It was a sad day here in the states when it was announced that the Lotus Elise and Exige would be banished from our shores because their smart-airbag exemption had expired. Lotus tried to lessen the sadness with a slew of special edition models, but that only did so much to quell the pain of losing some truly great driver’s cars. To make matters worse, Lotus continued to produce the Exige in Europe with the supercharged V-6 from the Evora S. Lament no more — according to the DuPont Registry, Lotus has confirmed that the Exige S will be returning to the United States as a track-only racer.
The most powerful Lotus Exige that we ever got in the U.S. was the Exige S260 Final Edition. Powered by the now-discontinued supercharged Toyota 1.8-liter I-4, the Exige S260 produced 257-hp and was capable of hitting 60 mph from a standstill in just 4.3 seconds. According to the DuPont Registry, our race-spec Exige S is expected to hit 60 mph in 3.8 seconds and top out at 170 mph, thanks to a 3.5-liter supercharged Toyota V-6 producing 345-hp.
While Lotus is sending the Exige S to our shores, it will differ slight from the Euro-spec model. DuPont reports that our track-dedicated Exige S will have a full roll cage, racing seats, five-point harness, electrical cut-out switch, and Lotus’ Dynamic Performance Management system with Touring, Sport, and stability control off settings to give drivers a bit of a safety net on the track. The Exige S is expected to cost between $85,000 and $90,000.
Source: DuPont Registry