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More Powerful Lotus Evora, Heading To Frankfurt Motor Show

Lotus Evora GT

It seems that the engineers over at Lotus are working hard on a more powerful version of the Evora, which will be revealed this September during the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Norfolk-based manufactured got their inspiration from the GT racer you see in this picture and promises to be more powerful than the current top-spec S version that churns 345 hp.

We don’t have any confirmed details but we can tell you that the new version will be extreme, featuring a stripped-out interior cabin and an updated V6 supercharged 3.5-liter engine that will develop about 400 hp. Dany Bahar, who is the company’s boss, said to Auto Express that the company is also working on a convertible while in 2013 we should expect to see a plug-in hybrid model.

In the mean time, the regular V6 Evora will receive “147 improvements”, including a sharper gearbox, a sportier exhaust note and better materials for the cabin.

This October, Lotus will show the running version of the plug-in hybrid which will have a 3-cylinder 1.2-liter engine and twin-electric motor that will provide a combined output of 1,000 Nm of torque, which should be enough for a 0-62 mph sprint time of 4.4 seconds and CO2 emissions of only 55 g/km. As we said before, the production version might make it into the market in about two years but it will most likely cost “double” in comparison to the regular V6 Evora. In other words, expect a price tag of around 100,000 pounds.

Source: Lotus via AutoExpress.co.uk


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Lotus Prolongs Evora’s Life Until 2017

2011 Lotus Evora S

A couple of days ago, Dany Bahar, who is the Group Lotus boss, revealed that the all-new Elan won’t be out until 2017 so until then Lotus will have to stick to the current Evora, which isn’t that bad at all if you ask me.

In this 5-year period until the new Elan is out, the British automaker will develop its own V8 4.8-liter that produces 570 hp. This engine will be produced at Hethel and will power the Esprit model which should be out sometime in 2013.

Bahar also said that the Lotus-Proton city car will go into a limited series production wearing the “Ethos” designation and in Europe it will wear the Lotus badge whereas in the Asian markets it will be a Proton. The one wearing the Lotus name will be more of a luxury car while the Proton is going to have a more affordable price tag. He didn’t say if it is going to be a hybrid or a pure battery vehicle. However, he did confirm the fact that it is going to be “one of the two”.

The aforementioned new V8 engine is going to be conceived by the Lotus Engineering division and it will be put to its first initial tests this August. The power unit has a curb weight of only 170 kg, which is 80 kg lighter than the Toyota engine that Lotus has been using in the last few years. Wolf Zimmerman, the chief engineer at Lotus says that this new engine is “40% smaller” in comparison to the Japanese unit.

Zimmerman also mentioned something about the possibility to create a 4-cylinder engine comprising one bank of the 8-cylinder unit. This engine might output 250 hp and power the Lotus Elise replacement model which will hit the market in 2015 or so.

Source: Lotus via Autocar.co.uk


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Lotus Elan Delayed Until 2016, At Least

Lotus Elan Concept

It seems that we have some bad news for those of you who were waiting for the revival of the Lotus Elan. A spokesperson for the company told our colleagues from Car and Driver the other day that the 2-seat, mid-engine coupe will not be out until 2016, at least. The car that we saw last year at the Paris Motor Show was supposed to be out sometime in 2013 or 2014, replacing the Evora.

Lotus says that its Evora model, which was introduced in 2009, will be “allowed to have a more traditional life cycle”. In other words, it means that the British company will continue to produce the model for at least 5-6 years. There are good chances for a second generation of the Evora, but nothing is certain at the moment. If there won’t be a second-gen Evora, Lotus will roll out the Elan, but we don’t know if the company is considering two distinct cars, one Elan and one Evora II.

We do know that more variants of the Evora will be launched in the following years. This year, Lotus will roll out the Evora S with a 345-hp engine and the Evora IPS which will feature an automatic gearbox. Although this is good news, these two new variants will not pay the company’s bills and the executives over at Lotus know this so more tweaked Evoras will certainly be launched in the future. If you didn’t know, the car was developed from start to accommodate an open-roof model and we will probably see one in 2-3 years or so. It shouldn’t come as a surprise if we’ll see a more lighter and track-oriented Evora, following the same recipe of just about every model ever made by Lotus.

The Lotus Esprit is set to arrive in dealerships in 2013 which means that until then the Evora will be the only model produced by the company, taking into consideration that starting with this summer; the company will discontinue the production of its legendary Elise and Exige models.

As a reminder, back in September last year at the Paris Motor Show, the British automaker said that they are developing six new different models. It seemed a little bit too much ambitious at that time and now we have the confirmation that they can’t live up to their promises. We believe that other scheduled introductions will also be delayed. Let’s hope we’re wrong about this one.

Source: Lotus via Car And Driver

F1 Team Lotus Buys Caterham


A few days ago, the Formula One Team Lotus owners have announced the acquisition of Caterham, a lightweight sports car manufacturer, but they didn’t say how much money they had to pay for finalizing the transaction.

The England-based Caterham company became popular for rolling out the Seven model, which is a 2-seater lightweight sports car that was designed by Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus, who sold the rights of the vehicle to Caterham back in 1973.

Team Lotus announced that there aren’t going to be any changes as far as Caterham’s management is concerned.

For celebrating this transaction, Caterham is going to build a limited-run series of Team Lotus Special Edition Sevens. They will offer only 50 upgrade packages (25 for UK and 25 for the rest of the world) that can be applied on the Superlight R500, the range-topping model that produces 263 hp and can hit a top speed of 150 mph.

[youtube width="470" height="344"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGERIVg7ATE[/youtube]

The price for this package is going to be 3,000 pounds and it includes a special Lotus livery, in the company’s traditional green and yellow colors; a plaque that features the signatures of Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen, who are the drivers of the Team Lotus F1; along with an invitation to a tour of the Team Lotus F1 factory, located in Hingham, Norfolk.

Source: Team Lotus via Carscoop

Lotus Renault 2011 F1 Car Launched


The 2011 season of F1 is approaching and the teams have started launching their cars. Last week we’ve seen Ferrari roll out their new F150 and now the Lotus Renault F1 team launched their R31 2011 F1 car. The presentation of the car was done at the Ricardo Tormo race track and the team is hoping that it will conquer the top spots in the F1 manufacturer’s championship.

Apart from the launch of their new car, the team announced that they obtained the services of Bruno Senna who will be the third driver for the Lotus Renault team this upcoming season. He will be the team’s test driver and he will take part in the development of the car. As you know, the car’s in F1 are in the development process even after the second half of the season, it is a continuous process and attempt to make the cars faster and more competitive on the track.

The car will be driven this season by Robert Kubica and Vitaly Petrov, who had the pleasure of unveiling it yesterday, along with the team’s technical director James Allison, team principal Eric Boullier and chairman Gerard Lopez. Allison declared that the R31 is a step forward from its predecessor, the R30, a car that allowed the team to grab the 5th place in 2010 in the constructors’ standings.

2011 Lotus Evora Police Car

2011 Lotus Evora Police Car

If you live in West Midlands, UK, don’t try to outrun the police on the highway as they are driving this 2011 Lotus Evora, a car presented at the Autosport International Show and donated by the British automaker to the United Kingdom police force.

For those of you with criminal intentions you should know that this Lotus Evora packs 280 hp under its beautiful bonnet and the car will stuck to your rear view mirror like the ones in the Need For Speed Hot Pursuit video game. This Lotus Evora police car will be given a 2-week trial run on a long stretch along the highway that covers approximately 450 miles, along with a couple of important routes, like the M2, M5 and M6 motorways.

From the outside, this 2011 Lotus Evora looks just about the same as the standard production model, except of course for a few obvious additions. The car now features a very cool looking police livery and packs the standard and obligatory police lights on the roof, grille and a modified interior cockpit.

Regarding the cabin, there aren’t any information about what changes this car has but most likely it will have a heavy dose of law-enforcement paraphernalia, like an on-board computer, a radar gun and a couple of gun holsters.

2011 Lotus Evora Police Car

This beautiful Lotus Evora police car is probably the fastest law enforcement car in the entire United Kingdom. Packing a powerful 3.5-liter V6 unit that churns 280 hp, it has a top speed of 168 mph. The Evora needs less than five seconds to reach 60 mph. The engine under the hood is the exact same one that you will find in the standard version of the car.

Although it is not one of the most intimidating cars in the world, it definitely makes up for in terms of raw power and speed, something very rare for a UK police car.

Lotus – A Racing Legend

Ayrton Senna's 1985 Lotus JPS

The question: “Who is Lotus?” has several answers of equal importance. Lotus is without any doubt one of the most famous sports cars manufacturers in the world and also a successful Formula 1 team that managed to win 73 races in its history with famous drivers like Mario Andretti and Jim Clark.

The origins of the company go back to 1952 when the late Colin Chapman opened a company named “Lotus Engineering Ltd”. In its first years, Lotus competed in sports car categories and by 1958 the company diversified and entered the F1 championship. Team Lotus was created as a separate company from Lotus engineering and went on to dominate the championship. Chapman became famous as an innovator, both in the car design and business as he was the one that introduced the concept of aerodynamics and sponsorship to the sport. Team Lotus won seven constructor’s championships, six drivers’ titles, 73 GP wins as well as over 100 pole-positions.

After the death of Chapman, the Lotus Company during the 80s and 90s wasn’t very successful but the team still was responsible for introducing some of the best drivers, like Nigel Mansell and Mika Hakkinen, both future world champions. In 1985, Team Lotus provided legend Ayrton Senna with his very first racing winning car. All of these successes were not enough for the company which eventually folded in 1994 due to the high debts that new owner David Hunt wasn’t able to pay off.

The Lotus name in Formula One was revived by Tony Fernandez who formed a team named 1Malaysia Racing which he wanted to race in the 2010 F1 championship. He wanted to attract some big names and asked Lotus to use the name for the team. Dany Bahar, Lotus Car boss agreed to Tony’s request as he always wanted on returning the Lotus name to F1. He was a formed brand manager for Ferrari and he immediately recognized the marketing potential of the sport and was hoping to market Lotus just like Ferrari. This method would involve Lotus purchasing a team and rely on television and press coverage to advertise the Lotus Company to the entire world, something Bahar thinks to be more effective than traditional poster and television campaigns.

Tony’s tactic paid off as he managed to attract respected designers like Mark Smith and Mike Gasgoyne plus racing winning drivers like Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen. This team went on becoming the best of the newcomers in 2010 and allowed Fernandez to think about a more promising 2011. With the support of Red Bull’s hydraulic package and gearbox, 2011 looks like a very interesting year for Lotus in F1.

Fans of Lotus think that the strong performances of Fernandez’s team are the continuation of Chapman’s team established 50 years ago. In order to emphasize this connection, Fernandez organized several events, including the 50th anniversary of the company’s first F1 success. At the event, many of the members of the old team Lotus participated to celebrate the anniversary. Fernandez also tried to acquire the rights of the “Team Lotus” name for the next year from David Hunt. This name was the original one of the team which Hunt still owned and he claims that because “Lotus Cars” and “Team Lotus” had always operated as separate firms, Fernandez would not need the permission of Lotus Cars to call his team “Lotus” and as a consequence, wouldn’t be a subject to the Bahar’s demands.


However, Dany didn’t agree to this as he believes that his firm owns the “Group Lotus” and claims that the “Team Lotus” is equally a part as “Lotus Cars”. To sustain his opinion, he took legal actions against Tony Fernandez in order to stop him using the “Team Lotus” name. At the same time, Bahar still was wishing for F1 participation and purchased a stake in the ART Racing group. ART has teams in both GP2 and GP3 competitions and plans on entering F1 somewhere in the upcoming future. Due to lack of funding, the company wasn’t able to participate in the 2010 season but with the help of Bahar, it will most likely enter F1 in 2013 as Lotus ART. 2013 will be the year when there will be massive regulation changes, giving them enough time to prepare for the new restrictions and regulations.

It wasn’t long before Bahar started to doubt regarding if his legal actions will be a success or not and started searching for a possibility to enter Lotus Cars in F1 in 2011. Bahar was aware of the fact that Fernandez doesn’t have any options to stop him naming another team Lotus and he hoped that Fernandez will then realize that it wouldn’t be beneficial for either of the parties to have two teams wearing the same name and as a consequence would sell eventually the “Team Lotus” name to Bahar.

The latter was lucky because Renault was looking at altering the company’s strategy and planned selling 25% of its share in the Formula 1 team and instead begin supplying engines to a couple of teams. It is stated that Bahar wanted to buy Renault’s stake of the F1 team and supply majority shareholder Genni Capital with extra $30 million annually to run the team, using the Lotus Renault name.

This provided Bahar with access to the negotiations and sources say that he requested that Renault stipulate in the contract that Fernandez could only get Renault power units if he agreed to drop the Lotus name. The latter gave up on the Lotus name and Renault announced that it will be supplying engines to 1Malaysia Racing Team.

Fernandez did not give up and he announced that he will be using a black & gold livery on the Lotus cars for the 2011 season. Without any doubt, there will be a Lotus team in F1, but we don’t know if it will be the old Renault team or Fernandez’s team. Either way, it will be more competitive.

Source: FOFF.com

Quick Look – 2012 Lotus Evora

2012 Lotus Evora

The Lotus Evora is one of the most beautiful cars in the world, at least in my opinion. In the years to come, the company will roll out the revival of the legendary Elise model along with the iconic Esprit. Next year, Lotus will also offer an updated version of their gorgeous Evora. Outside, there won’t be any important changes because let’s face it, the car looks almost perfect. Inside, the cabin will be completely redesigned and an updated version for the new S trim level that will be available. The cabin of the Evora will be created by CSI, a German company that created cabins for the Mercedes SLS, Audi R8 and Porsche Panamera.

The only exterior changes that will be made for the 2012 model will be on the headlamps and the front fascia, but nothing significant, except maybe for the new set of rims. The engine will remain the same, a V6 3.5-liter plant that churns 280 hp @ 6,400 rpm and 342 Nm @ 4,700 rpm. With this power plant, the car will be able to do the 0-60 mph sprint in 5 seconds, onto a top speed of 172 mph.

Sales of the 2012 Lotus Evora will commence sometime in the beginning of next year and its most important rivals will continue to be the Nissan GT-R, Audi TT-S (another great looking car) and the Porsche Cayman.

The Audi has a 2.0-liter TFSI engine under the hood that just received a more generous turbocharger that allows it to output 272 hp which is 7 hp more than the first version. With this engine, the TT-S will do the 0-60 mph sprint in 5.2 second and is capable of reaching a top speed of 155 mph (limited). The Cayman is another worthy adversary for the 2012 Evora, with its 2.9-liter 6-cylinder boxer engine that produces 265 hp. The Porsche can reach 60 mph from start in 4.9 seconds. The Nissan is the most powerful of these cars with its V6 3.8-liter that offers 485 hp @ 6,400 rpm. Top speed is rated at 193 mph.

2012 Lotus Evora

We are glad that Lotus will be coming back in the next following years because lately, except for the Evora, the company didn’t brought anything interesting to the table. The 2015 Elise will probably be the most important car in the last decade for Lotus.

History Lesson – 1961 Elite S1

1961 Elite S1

Today we are talking about the beautiful Lotus Elite, manufactured from 1958-1963. The car you see in these pictures was acquired as a basket case, dissembled and incomplete by its current owners back in 1983. Over more than 17 years, this Elite was brought back to life and it has been fully restored to current racing configuration. In 2004 the car participated in its first Historic race and has also run in other vintage races since then. The car was also present for three years at the Wine Country Classic and in 2007 made its very first appearance at the Monterey Historic Automobile Races.

The Lotus Elite was the first road-worthy, real production closed automobile developed by Colin Chapman. The racing program was funded with the money earned by the company from their road cars which were a huge hit during those times. This racing Elite features a glassfibre monocoque that is comprised of eight box sections. For that decade, the car was both strong and light and it featured a 4-cylinder aluminum 1216 cc power unit thanks to Coventry Climax. The car was capable of doing the 0-60 mph sprint in about 12 seconds, onto a top speed of 115 mph, pretty impressive for the early 60s. The engine was linked to a 4-speed manual transmission and disc brakes were used for all four wheels for proper braking. The suspension of this Elite S1 was independent, a rarity in comparison to other cars back then.

1961 Elite S1

The first prototype was launched a year earlier than the production model at the Earls Court Auto Show. During its production years the Lotus Elite was manufactured in 1050 units and then it was replaced by another hit, the Elan model. Without any doubt, the Elise was a road worthy vehicle, but it also managed to grab a couple of class wins at the very demanding 24 Hours of LeMans, making it a suitable car for both road and racing environments.

The Lotus Elite is considered to be the first modern car from the British automaker with a curb weight of only about 1,300 lbs thanks to its fiberglass unit-body construction. The Elite’s entire structure was composed of fibrous material in comparison to the more popular fiberglass body-on-steel frame design of those days. The engine of the Elite was also something impressive. Manufactured by Coventry Climax, it was capable of outputting between 75 and 105 hp, depending on the tune. Although it was a very common single overhead cam conventional four cylinder power unit, it was capable of reaching very high horsepower levels in reference to its size. The 4-speed gearbox we mentioned before was made by both ZF and MG during the car’s lifespan.

The car was known for its very good handling capabilities thanks to its very modern suspension configuration, aside from the low curb weight. It had wishbones and coil springs in the front while at the back it sported a MacPherson-like strut, also known as the “Chapman strut”.

1961 Elite S1

Aside from all of these technical figures which are very impressive for a car made in the late 50s / early 60s, the Lotus Elite is even now considered to be a very beautiful car. With its long nose and the short tail lent made the tiny Elite look more like much bigger grand touring cars. The cabin of the car was very comfortable and airy and it sported pretty good materials along with the simple yet very intuitive switches. The very nice 3-spoke steering wheel had a light wood rim contrasting the simple dashboard.

Without any doubt it will remain in the history of automotive as being one of the best road cars of its period, combining great looks with high-performance engineering, all wrapped in a lightweight package that made the car very fast back then. Also impressive is the Elite’s 0.29 coefficient of drag which is a very impressive figure even in 2011, regardless to say that in 1957 it was unheard of.

Source: ConceptCarz.com

2015 Lotus Elise Preview

2015 Lotus Elise

One of the most important releases at the 2010 Paris Auto Show was the revival of the Lotus Elise, set to go on sale starting with 2015 at a basic price of approximately $35,000. The next generation of the legendary Elise will have just like the older models a mid-engine rear-drive layout, but with a new configured chassis – adapted from the Evora. Lotus’ CEO Dany Bahar when asked to characterize the car, he said that it is “young, strong, confident, verging on ruthless”.

Having a closer look at the car we can strongly affirm that it is very different in comparison to the previous generation and has a very bold design which fits it very well. Many people affirmed that the design of the new generation is inspired by Toyota’s latest model. It doesn’t really matter where the car received its design at it looks very beautiful in our opinion.

Speaking of Toyota, the engine that powers the Lotus Elise is a 2.0-liter DOHC 16-valve four-cylinder, made entirely by the Japanese manufacturer. Similar with other current Lotus models, Toyota is the supplier of the power units. As standard, the car is equipped with a 6-speed manual gearbox and for extra money; customer will have the possibility to get the Elise with a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, developed entirely by Lotus.

2015 Lotus Elise

The engine management programming was done by Lotus and although they did not specify if the power unit is supercharged or turbo, it will most likely have around 300 hp and a 243 lb-ft of torque. The weight of the 2015 Lotus Elise is 2414 pounds and it will do 0-62 mph in 4.3 seconds. The top speed will be 170 mph.

The people at Lotus described the powertrain of the 2015 Elise to be a “mild hybrid”, taking into consideration the fact that the power unit features a stop/start function which shuts down the engine at the stoplight and once the driver touches the throttle, the engine lights up.

Unfortunately we will have to wait about 4 years until the Elise goes into production.

Lotus might bring two front-engine hybrids to Paris

As the Paris Motor Show is fast approaching, Lotussurprises are being rumored all around the web.

We already heard about the two new Evora models that will be presented, the Evora S and the Evora IPS. We’ve also heard some talk about a revived Esprit supercar, possibly with the V10 engine from the Lexus LFA.

Now, it seems that the British sportscar manufacturer is also preparing two hybrid models for a Paris debut.

Unlike the Lotus Evora 414E Hybrid we saw in Geneva, these new hybrids will have a front-mounted engine. Don’t expect a V8 or something like that, as rumors say that power will come from a 47 HP 1.2-liter gasoline three-cylinder, specifically designed to charge up the batteries that will power the electric motor.

Nothing else is known at this moment, but at the end of the month, when the Paris convention opens its doors, all will be clear.



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Revived Lotus Esprit to get Lexus LFA’s V10 and IS-F’s V8

Up until now, rumors about the upcoming revival of the Lotus Esprit were pretty dry, limiting to saying that the new Esprit will be more upmarket, in order to rival models from Ferrari or Aston Martin.

Now, courtesy of InsideLine, things have gotten a lot more interesting. It seems that Lotus will be using two very special Lexus engines for the new Esprit. How special? Rumors say that the Lexus LFA‘s massive 552 HP V10 will be available for the top spec, while the Lexus IS-F’s 416 HP V8 will be powering a cheaper version of the new Elise.

Rumors about Lotus using these performance engines from Toyota have been floating around for some time, but it seems that this time it might just come true. Lotus is under a new leadership, set to take the sportscar company to profit, and in order to do so, more upmarket models are needed.

We’ll know more as the Paris Motor Show gets underway, so stay tuned for more Lotus details.


Lotus Evora S and Evora IPS officially revealed before Paris debut

Lotus accidentally let it slip a few days ago that it will launch a special performance Evora S and an Evora automatic at the Paris Motor Show.

Now, the British sportcar manufacturer decided to officially detail these new models, the supercharged Evora S and the automatic-equipped Evora IPS (Intelligent Precision Shift).

First off, the Evora S uses a supercharger to squeeze more power out of the Toyota 3.5-liter V6. Output is now rated at 345 HP and 295 lb-ft of torque. This translates in a 0 to 62 mph time of 4.8 seconds and a top speed of 172 mph. More importantly, however, is that there’s a new Sport button in the Evora S. When pushed, it sharpens up the throttle response, opens an exhaust valve bypass as well as increase the rev limiter and change stability control settings. Simply put, Sport does what it says.

Next up, for those not looking for extreme performance, Lotus will offer the Evora IPS. Basically it is just a regular Evora with the new six-speed automatic transmission fitted. More importantly is that this hasn’t impacted the weight of the car, and it has both an automatic and a manual mode, which is enabled through the paddle shifters behind the wheel.

Expect more details when the Paris Motor Show will open its doors at the end of September.


Lotus accidentally confirms Evora S and Evora automatic for Paris debut

Lotus accidentally confirms Evora S and Evora automatic for Paris debut

The Paris Motor Show is shaping up to be one of the most important chapters in Lotus‘ history, as a lot of new models, concepts and revivals are rumored to be unveiled.

Among them, we now know that there will be a performance oriented Lotus Evora S, as well as an automatic gearbox-equipped Evora. How do we know that? It seems that someone at Lotus was a bit too eager and sent an e-mail to press outlets confirming the two models.

No other details were revealed, but you can clearly see that the British sportscar manufacturer is betting big on the popularity of the Evora.

Expect more details to be revealed in the following weeks, ahead of the Paris Motor Show’s start on October 2.


New Lotus Esprit to be revealed in Paris

British sportscar manufacturer Lotus is seemingly getting ready to move into a new direction, leaving behind lightweight, track-ready models for new, more upmarket cars, in order to rival luxury manufacturers like Ferrari or Lamborghini.

The company has now confirmed that at the upcoming Paris Motor Show, it will reveal a new concept, previewing an luxury supercar. The new model will take the Esprit heritage and name much further than previous iterations, at least according to Autocar’s inside sources.

Rumors also revealed that the British company, owned by Malaysia’s Proton, will unveil a lot of other concepts in the French capital, all emblematic of Lotus’ new direction.

Not much else is know though, so fans of the company should be patient until the Paris show starts this September.


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