Lotus pays homage with Evora S GP Edition

October 17th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

To honour the Lotus Renault Formula One Grand Prix team, Lotus has built an exclusive new special edition. Named the Lotus Evora S GP Edition, just three examples of the striking coupe will be produced.

Each of the vehicles will be highly specified, packing all the usual treats of the standard Evora S, plus the Premium Pack with SuedeTex trim.  Lotus’ Tech Pack is also part of the deal, along with a set of forged diamond cut design 19-inch wheels.

It’s the paint scheme that really makes this special edition stand out. Each version is elegantly uniformed in a gold-and-black paint scheme that pays homage to the Lotus Renault Formula One Grand Prix race livery. This livery itself is a tribute to the John Player Special Lotus of old. So in an odd way it’s a homage of a homage or two homages deep if you prefer. If you’re keen you’ll need to get together £69,950 (or $137,700 at current conversion rates) and head over to the UK, even then, they’ll probably be all gone already. Continue reading “Lotus pays homage with Evora S GP Edition” »

Lotus Evora GTE concept to debut at Pebble Beach

August 17th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The new Lotus Evora GTE Road Car Concept will be unveiled at the Pebble Beach Conours d’Elegance event in the USA today.

This road-read concept draws inspiration from the Lotus Evora GTE race car which was developed to be successful in the new global motorsport GTE category, which includes endurance races like the Le Mans 24 Hours.

This high-strung Evora GTE Road Car concept produces around 315kW from its race-developed engine, fed through a sequential AMT racing gearbox and put to the pavement through ultra-lightweight forged alloy wheels with center-lock hubs wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero Corsa tyres. Continue reading “Lotus Evora GTE concept to debut at Pebble Beach” »

New Lotus Esprit on track for 2013 but Elan is delayed

May 24th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Lotus sure came out swinging at last year’s Paris Motor Show, it revealed a gang of five different concept cars and spoke of grand ambitious for the coming years. The five concept vehicles that were revealed include the striking new Elan (pictured), Elise, Elite, Esprit and Eterne. Not much has been heard since until fresh news out of Lotus with updates on two of them.

Of all the concepts it is the new Esprit halo car which is receiving Lotus’ main attention. The new flagship model is still on track to arrive in production form by 2013. By comparison, the new Elan has been severely postponed and may not be seen before the end of 2016. Why? The fault may lay with the Lotus Evora.

Lotus had planned to shut down Evora production so that it could give way to the Elan but now, company management has decided that the Evora will receive a longer “traditional model cycle” with the possibility of a second-generation. If the Evora does continue into its next generation, it will put the Elan’s entire existence into question. Continue reading “New Lotus Esprit on track for 2013 but Elan is delayed” »

Lotus taking front-engine hybrids to Paris Motor Show

September 3rd, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Lotus is certainly working hard leading up to this year’s Paris Motor Show. The iconic marque will be releasing a new pair of Evoras and it will also be officially unveiling two front-engine hybrid vehicles. The new hybrids are in keeping with the automaker’s promise to offer more gasoline/electric sports cars. Apparently, one of these hybrid cars will be a four-door hatchback and the other will be a two-door coupe.

Lotus first debuted a hybrid concept earlier this year in the form of the Evora 414E Hybrid (pictured). However, unlike most of Lotus’ mid-engine vehicles the two new concepts will be front-engine models utilising a 47-horsepower 1.2-litre three-cylinder engine specifically designed to provide power to electric-drive hybrids.

More details will be revealed nearer to the Paris show later this month, so stay tuned.

Next Lotus Esprit could be Lexus V10 powered

August 31st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Lotus is ready to go big at the 2010 Paris Motor Show on next month.  The English automaker is set to reveal its new Esprit, the new Seven and two hybrid vehicles built on the modular chassis concept the automaker showed off in Geneva earlier this year.

The company is pushing on with its five-year plan to completely update its model range and with sales of the Evora strong it’s now all about the new models. While little is known about the replacement for the Seven the new Esprit has attracted much attention and speculation.

In terms of powertrains Lotus’ relationship with Toyota will come into play once more and could see Lexus-sourced engines fitted to the new Esprit. Apparently a choice of three Esprits will be available, including a 300hp version using Toyota’s direct injected V6, a 417hp model that would use the Lexus IS F’s 5.0-litre V8 and for the top range Esprit, a V10 500hp motor lifted from the Lexus LF-A supercar.

The partnership between Lotus and Toyota could also mean more eco-friendly motoring for Lotus fans. The English automaker has repeated said that lightweight platforms and fuel-efficient drivetrains are a top priority. With that in mind, an “Eco Esprit” could be available with a reworked version of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive.

The Evora will provide the basis for the next Esprit, and considering the quick turnaround for the Evora to shift from concept to production, Lotus has the ability to bring the new Esprit to market rapidly. If the Evora keeps selling well, then the new Esprit could be tearing up European roads by 2012, but it’s not going to come cheap.

Lotus to kill off the Europa

June 1st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham
Lotus has made the call to start winding down production of its Europa model. According to recent reports, Lotus dealers in Europe have already stopped taking orders for the car, which means Europa production will end later this year.

Now that Lotus has the Evora, launched last year, it can put an end to the Elise-based Europa which was always a bridge between the Elise and the Evora and never sold in massive numbers.

The Europa was introduced in 2006 and came with a 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder with 200 bhp (149 kW) and 270 Nm (200 lb-ft) of torque. The top-spec SE came in 2008 and featured 220 bhp with the same amount of torque.

Many believe the Europa was a temporary measure for Lotus, meant to fill a gap in the marketplace before the introduction of the Evora, while stimulating the Elise production line. Whatever the case, the Europa never generated a following from buyers and badge fans and failed to be a significant success.

Lotus sells special ‘Naomi for Haiti’ Evora

February 25th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Lotus has teamed up with quick-fisted British supermodel Naomi Campbell, to create eight specially made examples of its latest Evora sportscar to benefit the relief efforts in Haiti. Named the “Naomi for Haiti” edition, each Evora features a special paint scheme bearing the Haitian flag, a unique interior treatment and comes packed with the full option list.

Now, the first examples have gone to auction, held during London Fashion Week, and have achieved remarkable prices.

At GBP 320,000, the first example went to Campbell’s Russian high-roller boyfriend Vladimir Doronin, who was hellbent on securing the #1/8. The second special Evora also sold for over 300k pounds sterling, and the third at an undisclosed cheaper price. Five examples remain, and are up for auction now at www.naomiforhaiti.com until February 28.

Lotus Elise gets facelift for 2011 model

February 18th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

For the first time in more than seven years, the track-day warrior Lotus Elise is receiving a major facelift. And if you've noticing a few styling cues lifted from the Evora, your not wrong at all.

The striking new front fascia isn't there to help create a new-look uniformed range, it's actually mainly about efficiency. Thanks to the smoother, lower nose, restyled headlamps (complete with daytime running lights), larger grille and side ducting, new engine cover and reworked rear lines, the 2011 Elise's coefficient drag figure has been reduced by four percent.

The 1.8-litre engine remains, pumping out 192 hp in its naturally aspirated form and 217 hp when equipped with a supercharger. A new Toyota-sourced 1.6-liter engine will be made available for the first time with 134 hp (at 6,800 rpm) and 118 pound-feet of torque (at 4,400 rpm), which should result in a 0-100kph time of around six seconds. A six-speed manual remains standard on all models, and new lightweight forged wheels are available as an option, along with cruise control.

The 2011 Lotus Elise should be distributed globally from this April, expect sales to begin later this year.

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