Lotus – Automobile Magazine http://www.automobilemag.com No Boring Cars! | Reviews, Auto Shows, Lifestyle Sat, 01 Oct 2016 10:10:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.4 Lotus Drops Two New Videos of the 3-Eleven on the Nurburgring http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-drops-two-new-videos-insane-3-eleven-nurburgring/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-drops-two-new-videos-insane-3-eleven-nurburgring/#respond Thu, 22 Sep 2016 17:26:27 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=993792 For the unfamiliar, here’s a look at what makes the 3-Eleven special. Weighing in at just 1,962 pounds in race spec and 2,039 pounds in street trim, the 3.5-liter supercharged V-6 engine sends a maximum of 460 hp to the rear wheels (410 in street spec) through either a six-speed manual or sequential transmission. This...

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For the unfamiliar, here’s a look at what makes the 3-Eleven special. Weighing in at just 1,962 pounds in race spec and 2,039 pounds in street trim, the 3.5-liter supercharged V-6 engine sends a maximum of 460 hp to the rear wheels (410 in street spec) through either a six-speed manual or sequential transmission. This means a 0-60 mph time at just under three seconds and a top speed north of 170 mph. To show off these impressive performance credentials, Lotus just released two new videos of the 3-Eleven running wild on the Nurburgring.

In the videos, Lotus hotshoe Marc Basseng attacks the ‘Ring with ferocity, ripping past an entire fleet of Porsches in the process. This isn’t a really a surprise, however, given the featherweight construction high power output. According to Lotus, the 3-Eleven’s aero package produces 330 pounds of downforce in street trim and 474 pounds in race spec, giving the 3-Eleven a slippery profile to match the tremendous speed.

Take a look at the Lotus 3-Eleven on the Nurburgring in the video above and below.

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-drops-two-new-videos-insane-3-eleven-nurburgring/feed/ 0 Lotus Drops Two New Videos of the Insane 3-Eleven on the Nurburgring | Automobile Magazine In two new videos, Lotus hotshoe Marc Bessng demonstrates the monstrous speed of the 3-Eleven super sports car. lotus
2017 Lotus Evora 400 First Drive http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-lotus-evora-400-first-drive/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-lotus-evora-400-first-drive/#respond Tue, 09 Aug 2016 10:00:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=976298 SOUTH HAVEN, Michigan – Gingerman Raceway is a 2.14-mile circuit that AUTOMOBILE magazine has used in the past for All Stars testing, so this reporter can tell you authoritatively that the tight, technical third-gear track separates Colin Chapman-style sports cars from the ones that are all ate up with motor. That is, even Ferraris and Porsche...

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SOUTH HAVEN, Michigan – Gingerman Raceway is a 2.14-mile circuit that AUTOMOBILE magazine has used in the past for All Stars testing, so this reporter can tell you authoritatively that the tight, technical third-gear track separates Colin Chapman-style sports cars from the ones that are all ate up with motor. That is, even Ferraris and Porsche 911s feel just a bit too oversized, whereas the cars that fit in between, say, the Miata and the Boxster/Cayman feel just about right. You can work all day trying to get to 6/10ths of the limits of the former and not have half the fun you’d have in the latter.

The news here, right now, is that Lotus is returning to the U.S. road car market with the Evora 400, a thorough update of its four-seat, mid-engine sports car. Already on sale in Europe for about a year, the updated model was designed from the beginning to meet our emissions and crash/safety standards. Lotus calls the Evora 400 “over two-thirds new.”

The model year 2017 Lotus Evora 400 “will meet all U.S. specification regulations,” says CEO Jean-Marc Gales. Our bumper-height regulations helped design the 400’s revised front-end, and there are now front side-impact airbags, built into the outside bolsters of the Sparco seats. The redesign also allowed Lotus to double downforce from 35 pounds to 71 pounds — 27 in the front and 44 pounds in the rear.

2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter in motion

The first of 250 pre-ordered cars, about half ordered with the six-speed manual (an exceptional three-pedal take rate, these days) and half with the six-speed automatic, will be delivered to U.S. customers by the end of August. Base price is $93,785 with destination and handling.

Owned by Malaysian-based Proton, Lotus plans to bring a new, U.S.-spec protected Elise back by the next decade, Gales says. The company has ruled out larger cars such as a sedan, though a Lotus sport/utility is being studied. There has been no decision on whether to go forward with such a project, he says.

What’s not news is that the 2017 Lotus Evora 400 is perfectly suited to Gingerman, or perhaps Gingerman is perfectly suited to it. The Southwestern Michigan circuit is similar to Lotus’ test track at its Hethel, England,assembly plant, where the 400 completes a lap a full seven-seconds quicker than the last Evora, the 276-horsepower version imported here through the 2014 model year (Lotus has sold only track-legal cars since).

2017 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarter turn

Around Gingerman, the Evora 400 feels perfectly natural, whether in “Track” or all-nannies-off mode. Race mode, in fact, is close to stability control-off, with just a bit of intervention at the raw edges – a point which Your Humble Servant thankfully did not reach. The car turns in quickly with some compliance, takes a set, and claws down on the pavement, but not so much that you can’t make certain adjustments with the wheel, throttle, and excellent brakes, if/when necessary.

The supercharged Toyota V-6, rated 400 horsepower and 302 pound-feet, provides plenty of forward momentum, though it isn’t that push-you-into-your-seat kind of kick that some competitors provide, often as a way to distract you from all the understeer managed by ridiculously wide, grippy tires. Through 19-inch front and 20-inch rear tires, this car transmits everything through the suspension, steering, and brakes, and understeer is minimal. The excellent power-to-weight ratio is only part of the system, not an end to a means. The revised engine, which employs a Roots-type Edelbrock water-to-air-cooled supercharger, has a wider torque band peaking at 3,500 rpm and hanging on all the way up to 6,500 rpm.

2017 Lotus Evora 400 front lip

The six-speed ‘manual, which I sampled only on the Gingerman circuit, is said to be improved for feel. And it is good, though not as slick as some, with throw-lengths best described as “medium.”

And this is a compliment, truly: The Lotus Evora 400 handles like a Miata hardtop for well-heeled adults. No surprise when you consider that the Mazda was designed from the get-go as an affordable and reliable Lotus Elan. One other notable connection between the Lotus Evora 400 and the Mazda MX-5 is that both get-in-and-drive cars – there is no driver-adjustable electronically controlled damper setting. The “Sport” and “Race” buttons on the dash do hike up the throttle response, but mostly they regulate the level of electronic stability control, which is its highest in the “Drive” (normal) mode. The car comes nicely dialed in from the factory.

“We don’t give you 25 settings to choose from. We give you the right one,” Gales says.

Before tracking the car, I had a few miles on the straight and crumbly country roads east of the racetrack. The Lotus Evora 400 is firm, but not at all harsh. It has the sort of ride-handling balance, without giving up cornering acumen, we used to attribute to the BMW 3 Series.

2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior view 02

The hydraulic power steering is heavy at slow speeds; at speed, however, it feels light and easy, without any loss of precision, feel, or feedback, whether on the track or the road. It’s the sort of steering that’s so good, you don’t think about it while you’re using it. The interior was expertly put-together, with supple optional leather (Alcantara also is available). It’s not quiet, especially when you squeeze the throttle pedal, but not too loud for this sort of car, either. Based on the two cars I drove, Porsche has nothing on Lotus in terms of quality, luxury, or style. My one complaint in the on road tester, with the six-speed automatic and paddle shifters, is that the gear indicator is hidden by the right side of the steering wheel rim, which makes it hard to keep track of your present gear. Swapping it with the small, equal-size tire pressure gauge on the other side, or better, putting a digital readout in the tachometer (the dial numbers/hashmarks are now white, not red) would have worked. On the plus side, the Evora redesign includes smaller doorsills, which are now 2.2-inches lower and 1.7-inches narrower. It is now a much easier car for anyone older than 18 to get in and out.

Gales says that the Evora 400’s bonded aluminum chassis’ stiffness is equal to that of a Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Body panels are composite, and the only addition to the U.S.-spec car versus the Euro-spec car is that we get side-impact bars in the new thinner (matching the sills), lighter doors. These add 29 pounds to the Euro car, for a mass of 3,153 pounds for the manual and 3,179 pounds with the automatic.

In the tradition of Colin Chapman (and Porsche), there are extra-cost options to add lightness. The Carbon Pack, featuring carbon-fiber roof panel, front splitter, rear wing center, rear diffuser finisher, front access panel and wing mirror caps sheds 11 pounds, while adding $10,000 to your Monroney. A titanium sport exhaust subtracts 22 pounds and adds $8,000, while a lithium-ion battery also loses 22 pounds while gaining $8,000 to the bottom line. Both rear-seat and air conditioning deletes are free.

2017 Lotus Evora 400 side profile

Weight-adding standard equipment upgrades mostly were for quality and reliability: A gearbox cooler to handle hotter climates and a Torsen-type limited-slip differential, which add nearly seven pounds.

Oh, and there’s a single rear cupholder, adding 1 kilogram, or about 2.2 pounds.

“We didn’t take the decision lightly,” Gales says.

Yes, the United States remains the biggest market for sports cars. Lotus’ next biggest markets are Japan, the U.K., Germany and France, while in China, it might sell three cars in a year. The world’s biggest auto market apparently hasn’t discovered sports cars unless they’re Ferraris or Lamborghinis.

If Lotus can quickly make the world’s largest sports car market its largest market, again, it will mark a quick turnaround from the travails of the past decade. It must overcome recent memories of the Dany Behar spending debacle, the ill-advised re-entry into Formula 1 and even into IndyCar, and the fight over the Lotus-F1 naming rights. Forget all that and drive the car. It is good, it is light, and it’s the sort of modern car that Colin Chapman (no angel, himself) would want to wear the Lotus badge. It’s a very good thing for enthusiasts that Lotus is back.

2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end

2017 Lotus Evora 400 Specifications

On Sale: Now
Price: $93,785/$97,185-$99,885 (base/as-tested manual-automatic)
Engine: 3.5 DOHC 24-valve V-6/400 hp @ 7,000 rpm, 302 lb-ft. @ 3,500-6,500 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic
Layout: 2-door, 4-passenger, mid-engine, RWD coupe
EPA Mileage: TBD
L x W x H: 172.6 x 72.6 x 48.4 in.
Wheelbase: 101.4 in.
Weight: 3,153-3,179 lbs. (mfr., manual-automatic)
0-60 MPH: 4.1 sec. (mfr)
Top Speed: 186 mph (manual, mfr)
2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarter 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end 02 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter in motion 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarters 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end 03 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarter turn 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end in motion on track 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter in motion 02 2017 Lotus Evora 400 side 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarter in motion on track 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front lip 2017 Lotus Evora 400 side profile 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear quarter panel 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear end 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior seats 2017 Lotus Evora 400 headlamp 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front wheels 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear taillight 2017 Lotus Evora 400 wheels 02 2017 Lotus Evora 400 center console 2017 Lotus Evora 400 front end lineup 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior door panel 02 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior door panel 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior driver side 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior seats 1 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior view 02 2017 Lotus Evora 400 interior 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear interior seats

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Of Course the Lotus Evora 400 Will Get a Gulf Livery http://www.automobilemag.com/news/of-course-lotus-evora-400-will-get-gulf-livery/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/of-course-lotus-evora-400-will-get-gulf-livery/#respond Mon, 11 Jul 2016 21:22:27 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=966455 To create a new special edition of the Evora 400, Lotus opened up the polls to its followers on social media. In the most predictable outcome ever, fans chose the iconic Gulf livery as the special edition scheme. Looking at the field of color scheme possibilities, Gulf was inevitable. Among those available, including the runner-up...

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To create a new special edition of the Evora 400, Lotus opened up the polls to its followers on social media. In the most predictable outcome ever, fans chose the iconic Gulf livery as the special edition scheme.

Looking at the field of color scheme possibilities, Gulf was inevitable. Among those available, including the runner-up yellow-on-black combo, none had the historical and aesthetic pull to overcome the wave of Gulf fans. The Martini Racing red/blue blend, the only other design that we think would stand a fighting chance, was conspicuously absent from the available options.

Lotus Evora 400 Blue Orange Edition 3

Lotus listened, and announced the very limited run of special edition Lotus Evora 400 would carry the popular color combo. This is a special edition limited to just 10 units, designed to commemorate Lotus’ 50 year anniversary occupying the Hethel airfield factory.

Essentially, the changes made to this special edition are simply skin deep. Underneath the fancy paint, the Evora packs the same 3.5-liter supercharged V-6 engine, pushing out 400 hp and 302 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels through either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. This prodigious power is enough to send the Lotus from a standstill to 60 mph in an impressive 4.1 seconds, onto a top speed of 186 mph.

Lotus Evora 400 Blue Orange Edition 2

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/of-course-lotus-evora-400-will-get-gulf-livery/feed/ 0 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear interior seats Lotus Evora 400 Blue Orange Edition 3 2017 Lotus Evora 400 rear interior seats Lotus Evora 400 Blue Orange Edition 2
Report: Lotus Evora May Return to U.S. Without Supercharger http://www.automobilemag.com/news/report-lotus-evora-may-return-u-s-without-supercharger/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/report-lotus-evora-may-return-u-s-without-supercharger/#respond Tue, 22 Mar 2016 14:26:32 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=906783 There’s good news and bad news for American fans of the Lotus Evora. On the positive side, the purist 2+2 sports car is still slated to return to the U.S. market this year. On the other hand, Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales told Automotive News the car may come here without its supercharger. Europe’s Lotus Evora...

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There’s good news and bad news for American fans of the Lotus Evora. On the positive side, the purist 2+2 sports car is still slated to return to the U.S. market this year. On the other hand, Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales told Automotive News the car may come here without its supercharger.

Europe’s Lotus Evora 400 uses a 3.5-liter V-6 engine supplemented by a supercharger, but Gales told Automotive News that deleting the blower could help Lotus easily meet U.S. emissions standards. Lotus reportedly thinks that’s a better solution than fitting a turbocharged four-cylinder engine. The Evora’s supercharged engine currently produces 400 hp and 302 lb-ft of torque.

2016 Lotus Evora 400 front three quarter motion 6 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter motion 1 2016 Lotus Evora 400 wheel 2016 Lotus Evora 400 steering wheel 2016 Lotus Evora 400 engine 2016 Lotus Evora 400 tail light 2016 Lotus Evora 400 side profile1 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01

“In the U.S. we have to show a 3 percent per year reduction in carbon dioxide emissions… One option is remove the supercharger,” he told AN. “I don’t believe a four-cylinder fits there.”

The 2017 Lotus Evora 400 coupe is expected to reach the U.S. by May. The car had to take a brief hiatus from the U.S. market while Lotus incorporated required features like smart airbags and side airbags. Lotus expects to sell about 400 cars per year in the U.S. and already has 250 orders for the new Evora, Gales told AN. The Lotus Evora 400 Roadster, which debuts overseas this fall, will reach the U.S. market in 2017.

There’s no word yet on pricing or timing for a detuned, non-supercharged version of the car.

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/report-lotus-evora-may-return-u-s-without-supercharger/feed/ 0 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01 2016 Lotus Evora 400 rear three quarter 01
The 1963 Lotus Super 7 Came with Disassembly Instructions http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-1963-lotus-super-7-came-with-disassembly-instructions/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-1963-lotus-super-7-came-with-disassembly-instructions/#respond Tue, 15 Mar 2016 20:01:16 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=902472 The Lotus Super 7 is not a car for the faint of heart. With a cabin that meets every bit of the word “barebones,” and a personality more suited to back roads than busy city streets, it’s not a ride for the casual enthusiast. This is partially what drew Lotus Super 7 owner Geoff Wise to...

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The Lotus Super 7 is not a car for the faint of heart. With a cabin that meets every bit of the word “barebones,” and a personality more suited to back roads than busy city streets, it’s not a ride for the casual enthusiast. This is partially what drew Lotus Super 7 owner Geoff Wise to his red Lotus, as seen in the newest episode of Petrolicious.

In what Petrolicious is billing as its first feature film on a kit car, the Lotus 7 exited the factory a jumble of parts and body panels, with assembly left up to the buyer. This was done primarily for tax reasons, as there was a heavy tax levied on assembled cars imported to the U.S. Even if Lotus shipped the parts with an assembly book, the tax would remain. To get around this, Geoff said each Lotus came with “disassembly” instructions, which could be followed in reverse to build the car.

Wise came to find the Lotus 7 while he was attempting to fulfill his childhood desire to own a race car that was drivable on the street. After bringing the Lotus back to his garage from Texas to California, he converted the car from full race-spec to something that is a bit more palatable on open roads.

Now, he enjoys the many looks and questions from bewildered onlookers. “People will just come up and talk to you,” he says.

Take a look at Geoff Wise’ 1963 Lotus Super 7 Series II in the newest episode of Petrolicious below.

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-1963-lotus-super-7-came-with-disassembly-instructions/feed/ 0 The 1963 Lotus Super 7 Came with Disassembly Instructions - Automobile With weight hovering around the 1,000 pound mark, the Lotus 7 is one of the most visceral cars available.  1963 lotus super 7
Lotus 3-Eleven Sets Production Lap Record at Hockenheimring http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-3-eleven-sets-production-lap-record-at-hockenheimring/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-3-eleven-sets-production-lap-record-at-hockenheimring/#respond Fri, 11 Mar 2016 15:58:13 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=900864 The new Lotus 3-Eleven has made quite the name for itself, packing an astounding level of performance in such a small package. This incredile capability is illustrated by Lotus’ announcement of the 3-Eleven breaking the production lap record at the famed Hockenheimring. Surprisingly, it wasn’t Lotus behind the lap record, but Christian Gebhardt, the lead...

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The new Lotus 3-Eleven has made quite the name for itself, packing an astounding level of performance in such a small package. This incredile capability is illustrated by Lotus’ announcement of the 3-Eleven breaking the production lap record at the famed Hockenheimring.

Surprisingly, it wasn’t Lotus behind the lap record, but Christian Gebhardt, the lead Road Test Editor for German publication Sport Auto. The record 1:06.2 lap was set in a Lotus 3-Eleven shod with standard road-spec tires, out-hustling even mighty hypercars in the process.

Lotus 3 Eleven apex

The list of cars beat by the Lotus 3-Eleven reads like a who’s-who in the supercar world, with the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series, Ferrari 488 GTB, 911 GT2 RS, Corvette ZR1, and Gumpert Apollo all falling behind the 3-Eleven’s time. The little Lotus even bloodied the nose of the insane Porsche 918 Spyder, edging by with a 0.1 second lead.

Looking at the spec sheet for the Lotus, things start to make a little more sense. Under the tight composite skin lies a 3.5-liter supercharged V-6 engine, pushing out 410 hp in road trim and 460 hp in the full-fat race specification. That prodigious power is sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed sequential transmission, allowing the 2,039 pound (dry) barchetta to punch to 60 mph in 3.3 seconds and hustle its way up to 174 mph.

Despite this astounding record and mouth-watering stats, the Lotus isn’t going to ever make it to our shores.

Take a look at the Hockenheimring’s new champion in the video and photo gallery below.

Lotus 3 Eleven font in motion 2 Lotus 3 Eleven apex Lotus 3 Eleven rear three quarters in motion Lotus 3 Eleven rear three quarters in motion 2 Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarters Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarters in motion Lotus 3 Eleven front in motion Lotus 3 Eleven front Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter1 Lotus 3 Eleven rear close Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter at Goodwood 2 Lotus 3 Eleven rear three quarter Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter Lotus 3 Eleven Road Front 3QTRS1 Lotus 3 Eleven fire extinguisher and battery switches Lotus 3 Eleven front Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter at Goodwood 1 Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter Lotus 3 Eleven front three quarter at Goodwood 2 Lotus 3 Eleven interior 2 Lotus 3 Eleven rear three quarter 2 Lotus 3 Eleven Race Front Detail Lotus 3 Eleven Road Front 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS1 Lotus 3 Eleven Road Side1 Lotus 3 Eleven Testing MB Lotus 3 Eleven Road Side Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-3-eleven-sets-production-lap-record-at-hockenheimring/feed/ 0 Lotus 3-Eleven Sets Production Lap Record at Hockenheimring At the hands of a German car publication, the Lotus 3-Eleven monsters the Hockenheimring lap record.  lotus 3-eleven hockenheimring Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven apex Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS Lotus 3 Eleven Road Rear 3QTRS
Lotus Evora Sport 410 Brings More Power, Less Weight, Better Handling http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-evora-sport-410-brings-more-power-less-weight-better-handling/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-evora-sport-410-brings-more-power-less-weight-better-handling/#respond Thu, 25 Feb 2016 16:36:38 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=889953 Three seconds faster than the Evora 400 around the Hethel test track.

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Not long after the rip-roaring Lotus Evora 400 reminded us just how good a Lotus can be, a new champ is at the top of the heap. Lotus today revealed the Evora Sport 410, a faster, lighter, and more powerful distillation of the Evora.

 

Combining the 410-hp supercharged V-6 engine from the track-carving Lotus 3-Eleven with 154 pounds of weight loss, the Lotus Evora Sport 410 sprints from 0-60 mph in just 3.9 seconds with a top speed of 186 mph. “The result is dynamically excellent and nothing short of superb,” said CEO Jean-Marc Gales in a statement.

 

Customers have the choice between a six-speed manual gearbox with a lightweight flywheel, or an available six-speed automatic gearbox paired with aluminum steering-wheel-mounted shifted paddles. And if the manual wasn’t already the no-brainer option, it’s the only way to get the 410’s Torsen limited-slip differential.

2016 Lotus Evora 410 rear three quarters

A standard carbon-fiber package helps cut down on mass, and includes a new carbon-fiber engine cover. It includes a louvered section consistent with the look of classic Lotus cars, and increases downforce by 15 percent without increasing drag. The weight-loss regime also includes a carbon-fiber roof panel, front access panel, and front splitter. Lightweight 10-spoke forged aluminum wheels wrapped in Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires complete the high-performance package.

 

Inside, the Lotus Evora Sport 410 adds standard carbon-fiber sport seats lined with Alcantara, which also lines the steering wheel and center console. (There is an optional leather seating package.) New one-piece door-trim panels are lighter than before, and the armrests and storage compartment have also been removed to keep weight down. You can even have the speakers removed if you order your Evora 410 without an infotainment system. This car is no pretender.

2016 Lotus Evora 410 interior

Because the weight reduction pushed the curb weight just under 3,000 pounds, Lotus was says it was able to adjust the Evora’s suspension for even greater agility. Revised damping, improved geometry, and a 0.2-inch lower ride height than the Evora 400 are said to yield better handling without compromising ride comfort. In Gales’ words, “The Evora chassis was already the best in the business – the Evora Sport 410 takes it to a whole new level.”

 

All of these improvements are visible in the Lotus Evora Sport 410’s performance around the historic Hethel test track. Thanks to its lower center of gravity and improved power-to-weight ratio, the Evora Sport 410 can make the rounds at Hethel three seconds faster than the Evora 400.

 

Total production is limited to 150 cars. While the Evora 400 represented a strong start for Lotus, a brand which has been looking to prove itself again after the disaster reign of former CEO Dany Bahar, the Lotus Evora Sport 410 might just be another return to form.

2016 Lotus Evora 410 wheel 2016 Lotus Evora 410 rear 2016 Lotus Evora 410 interior 2016 Lotus Evora 410 hood 2016 Lotus Evora 410 front clip

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Lotus Elise Cup 250 Brings Even More Lightness http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-elise-cup-250-brings-even-more-lightness-2/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-elise-cup-250-brings-even-more-lightness-2/#respond Tue, 16 Feb 2016 17:15:48 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=882561 A pocket-sized pipsqueak aimed at the track.

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Light Speed takes on a very different meaning when talking about Lotus. The company’s motto has always been to simplify and add lightness when engineering it calls cars. Yet in recent years, Lotus has been packing on the pounds. With that said, latest Lotus, the Elise Cup 250, harks back to the company’s featherweight foundation.

The Elise Cup 250 replaces the similarly hardcore Elise Cup 220. Wither a lighter lithium-ion battery, lighter carbon-fiber seats, and “ultra-lightweight” forged alloy wheels, the car weighs an impressive 46 lb less than the car it replaces. This shedding of weight furthermore allows the Elise Cup 250 to become the quickest road-going Lotus in the company’s history.

Lotus Elise Cup 250 rear side view

The Lotus Elise Cup 250 now sprints to 60 in just 3.9 seconds, and will continue on to a top speed of 154 mph. Remarkably, Lotus has tuned the car’s miniscule supercharged 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine to produce 243 hp, which just goes to prove that light can be might. For those wanting an even more track-focused Elise Cup 250, an optional Carbon Aero Pack (comprising a new front splitter, rear wing, rear diffuser, and side skirts made from the lightweight material) will be available that further reduces the car’s weight by staggering 22 lb.

Most other suspension and mechanical parts have been carried over from the previous Elise Cup 220. This includes the motor-sports derived adjustable suspension, the adjustable front anti-roll bar, Bilstein dampers, AP Racing twin-piston front brakes, and Brembo single-piston rear calipers.

Lotus Elise Cup 250 wheel

“The Lotus Elise has long set the benchmark in its class, yet we’ve been able to hone its straight-line performance and handling,” Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales said in a statement. “Yes, it is capable of amazing things on a track, but it also retains its road manners and is perfectly composed for day-to-day driving.”

The Lotus Elise Cup 250 additionally went through a host of aerodynamic changes that provides the car with 145 lb of downforce at 100 mph. That number increases to as much as 342 lb at the car’s top speed of 154 mph.

Lotus Elise Cup 250 inside

While only 200 examples of the Lotus Elise Cup 250 will be built each year, each of which is available in one of only 10 distinct colors, none will be brought to the United States. In recent years, The Elise was discontinued in the U.S. several years ago, leaving only the Evora in the U.S. market. That car, too, briefly left the U.S. market but will return thanks to several updates.

The new Lotus Elise Cup 250 will go on sale this April with the starting price equivalent to $65,209 in the U.K.

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Petrolicious Looks at Why the Lotus Esprit is an Unknown Supercar http://www.automobilemag.com/news/petrolicious-looks-at-why-the-lotus-esprit-is-an-unknown-supercar/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/petrolicious-looks-at-why-the-lotus-esprit-is-an-unknown-supercar/#respond Tue, 02 Feb 2016 20:32:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/petrolicious-looks-at-why-the-lotus-esprit-is-an-unknown-supercar/ Lotus’ sweet-spot.

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According to Spencer Canon, he was drawn to buy his 1989 Lotus Espirt because of how little knowledge exists about the car. “The Esprit is not a well-known car,” says Spencer Canon. “Car guys know what it is, but they don’t know much about it—it’s a mystery.” On the newest episode of Petrolicious, the team examines Lotus’ hidden gem.

After Lotus ceased production of the Esprit in the early 2000s, the lithe coupe was shoved to the wayside in the wake of supercar offerings from larger manufacturers like Ferrari and Lamborghini. Because of this, there aren’t many around, and a general lack of knowledge intimidates buyers before they can even sit behind the wheel.

Canon, who creates high-end carbon-fiber roadbikes under the Ritte Cycles company, was attracted to the Esprit for this exact reason. He acquired his Esprit in derelict shape. He spent months stripping the paint off the body, as the previous owner had slathered the coupe in sticky red paint. He repainted his Esprit in a unique powder-blue color that has proven to be slightly controversial with Esprit owners.

Since the Esprit was in such terrible condition, Canon decided to transform the Esprit into a representation of his imagination, or the physical manifestation of what he perceives to be the perfect car.

With a turbocharged 2.2-liter four-cylinder, Canon’s Lotus sounds about as fast as it looks, with an addictive turbo blow-off sound accentuating the four-cylinder growl.

Take a look at the newest episode of Petrolicious in the video below.

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Lotus Exclusive Program Adds Individualization to Lineup http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-exclusive-program-adds-individualization-to-lineup/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-exclusive-program-adds-individualization-to-lineup/#respond Fri, 08 Jan 2016 17:40:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-exclusive-program-adds-individualization-to-lineup/ Add the personal touch to your British sportscar.

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After nearly a year out of the limelight, it seems Lotus is making a large push to move back into public view, with a host of new models, special editions, and a slow return to the U.S. market. Now, Lotus released information on its new Lotus Exclusive customization program.

The new program allows Lotus owners to customize and modify their sports cars to their exacting tastes. Participants are offered a large range of colors, body decals, and interior trim to make their Lotus perfect.

The Exclusive program introduces a host of historic paint colors, including Essex Blue, a favorite of Lotus buyers in the 1980s, along with the ever-popular Motorsport Black. Along with historical colors, Exclusive offers custom color-matching services to create virtually any color imaginable in matte, gloss, metallic, or pearlescent.

The Exclusive program also offers new body decals available for application on areas like the side mirrors, sills, wings, and spoilers. Accents like stripes and flags can add extra individualization missing from the little sports cars.

While the outside of the cars carry the bulk of the optional customization, the interior is not left out of the Exclusive program. Five “suggested” leather colors can be installed, along with four different stitching colors.

In terms of model availability, the British automaker claims that Exclusive is available for “all Lotus cars,” including the Elise, Exige, and Evora models.

For the moment, Exclusive remains a Europe-only service, but Lotus has plans to expand it to other regions later this year.

Lotus Exige Sport 350 rear three quarter 02 Lotus Exige Sport 350 front three quarter in motion Lotus Exige Sport 350 wheel Lotus Exige Sport 350 shifter knob Lotus Exige Sport 350 rear three quarter 021 Lotus Exige Sport 350 rear wing Lotus Exige Sport 350 interior view Lotus Elise Sport 220 interior Lotus Elise Sport 220 front Lotus Elise Sport 220 side

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/lotus-exclusive-program-adds-individualization-to-lineup/feed/ 0 Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side Lotus Elise Sport 220 side