Lotus Shows Off Its Racing Past and Future
Lotus provided some excitement for its fans at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Chinese company Geely purchased a majority stake in Lotus in 2017, and it recently announced plans to include the storied British brand's wares among the 150,000 cars it will produce annually in China at a plant in Wuhan City. While gaining production capacity is good news for Lotus, there's an obvious concern that its products might lose what makes them special. To that end, as the brand prepares to reinvigorate itself with its first all-new car in a decade—a hypercar, no less—it's also being careful to both preserve its heritage and return to its roots in racing. Indeed, Lotus recently showcased its past and future at the Goodwood Festival of Speed—here are three cars that stood out above the rest:
Lotus Evora GT4 Concept Race Car
The Lotus Evora GT4 concept car is leading the way with the company's renewed focus on motorsports. The GT4 registered some very fast times on the Goodwood hill climb course with the company's Director of Vehicle Attributes Gavin Kershaw behind the wheel.
Lotus 72 (Chassis 5)
In 1972, Emerson Fittipaldi clinched the Formula 1 Driver's and Constructor's World Championships by dominating five out of 11 races in what many consider to be among the—if not the single—greatest Formula 1 cars of all time, the Lotus 72. Fittipaldi was reunited with his championship-winning car at Goodwood for the first time since 1973, a truly great moment for any racing fan to witness.
Lotus 49 (Chassis R10)
Another Goodwood highlight was Graham Hill's grandson Josh Hill driving his grandfather's Lotus 49. The racing legend was killed in a plane accident along with five other members of the Embassy Hill Racing Team in 1975, but prior to that achieved victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Indianapolis 500, and the Monaco Grand Prix, making him the only driver to do so.