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Offline AdminAG

  • All the news that fits to pixels

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Lotus hopes to completely reinvent itself by 2016 and the Elite is our first glimpse at what the brand's future holds.

Source: http://www.automobilemag.com/auto_shows/paris/2010/1009_lotus_elite_concept/index.html

If all goes according to plan, the production Elite will hit the streets in April of 2014 and Lotus will become profitable around the same time. New Lotus Group CEO Dany Bahar doesn't hide the fact that the little British brand hasn't made money in more than 15 years and that trend needs to be reversed immediately.

New models are needed to improve the appeal and profitability of Lotus and that necessitates taking steps to make the cars slightly more mainstream in approach. The Elite will use a front-mid-mounted V-8 engine connected to an epicyclic transmission with integrated electric motors and an optional KERS system. No manual transmission will be offered, though Lotus will allow the driver to select a gear manually via paddle shifters, and the car will be about 10 inches longer than the current Evora. While the concept is a 2+2 GT with a power retractable hardtop, the production car could also be available as a 2+2 coupe. Expect the 5.0-liter V-8, a heavily reworked version of the Lexus IS-F powerplant, to produce 542 hp thanks to the addition of an intercooled supercharger. A more potent R version will deliver 611 hp and a 0-62 mph sprint in 3.5 seconds, according to Lotus. Curb weight of the base car is expected to be just over 3700 pounds.

Design director Donato Coco is using the Elite to showcase the future of Lotus' styling, which is most apparent in the front end. Coco found the current Elise, Exige, and Evora to be a little too two-dimensional for his taste, so he put a lot of effort into giving the Elite's front fascia some depth. Using words like wide, low, and tensioned surfaces, Coco told us the Elite should be the "highest expression of English cars." In person the Elite almost looks like an Aston Martin, so we'd say Coco and his team have hit the mark.

The Elite's interior will be as upscale and tidy as the exterior. A proprietary Lotus human-machine interface will debut in the Elite, though it's too easy to say exactly what the capabilities of the system will be. The computer-generated images of the Elite's interior were much more luxurious than any current production Lotus, in order to command the expected 115,000 starting price for the car. Most importantly, Lotus has given lots of attention to ingress and egress in the Elite, so you won't have to slither in and out of the car like we're accustomed to with the Elise and Exige.

Elite is the first step in Lotus' plan to move away from a niche player to a healthy brand with a variety of products that range from track-only specials to premium grand touring cars. We'll have more details on the complete range of Lotus products once we get to the Paris motor show on September 30th. Be sure to check back with Automobilemag.com next week for all the updates from Paris.

Hello :)

Offline dkabab

Offline allanuber

  • Joined: Aug 2007

  • Location: Sydney
  • Name: Al
that looks fantastic

Really? I can't help but see Honda S2000 mated with a Mazda 6 from the side.
C'mon, do it!

Offline dkabab

Really? I can't help but see Honda S2000 mated with a Mazda 6 from the side.

everything looks like something else these days.... i like it anyway

Offline Mr Enzo

  • Joined: Feb 2010

  • Location: Melbourne
Wheels look the same as a porsche turbo 
Batti il ferro quando caldo.
Strike when the iron is hot.

Offline Marcus G

  • Joined: Jan 2010

  • Location: Perth
I officially declare that thing looks awesome! :lovies:

Offline ACP

  • Lives in a Metro Tangerine

  • Joined: Jun 2008

  • Drives: McLaren
  • Location: Sydney
Here are my thoughts:

1. Front does look a bit Honda S2000-ish.

2. Rear lights look a bit Maserati-ish

3. Wheels look a bit Aston Vantage V12-ish

4. Engine output at 611 bhp is pretty amazing as is the 3.5 sec to 100 kph.

5. Side mirrors are the new camera jobs which is interesting.

6. Gearbox sounds interesting. Is this new technology?

7. It's convertible but where does the roof fold into? It looks like rear screen is too long/large to fit in the boot?

8. The new Esprit (if that's released) must be packing some pretty amazing power/performance stats if this Elite concept is not the top range model.

9. Appears to be competing in the Ferrari California sector.

Overall a pretty exciting addition but will probably be $450k - $500k here.

Offline futurism

  • Joined: Jan 2009

  • Drives: Regretfully sold my GT3
  • Location: Adelaide
  • Name: David
I think it looks great, but I dont think it looks like a Lotus should
it looks very Japanese
If it were a new Toyota/Lexus/Mazda it would be awesome

performance figures are fantastic though

but not due until 2014? thats a long way off
3.5 years give or take is a long way out, the competition may well have new models on the road that we havent seen yet a 2 years before that

Lotus purists wont like it due to its weight, front engine, creature comforts etc. but people need to realise Lotus are going for a brand new market

it will however be a shame if they dont keep making a car of some kind that weighs next to nothing and can be bought new for as little as 70k in Australia
As theres really nothing competing with them in that range

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