A tumultuous 2012 has seen Lotus stumble to the brink of being irrelevant. However, the Malaysian-owned British automaker is determined to make amends in 2013, and to their credit, they’re off to a fast start with the upcoming debut of the Exige V6 CupR — a race-spec sports car that’s ready to ply its craft in numerous racing series this year.
The Exige V6 CupR is set to be unveiled at the 2013 Autosport International Show in Birmingham, England. Lotus is bringing the car to the show in an attempt to attract potential entrants to the newly-announced SRO GT4 European Trophy.
As far as we’re concerned, if we had a racing team and we were looking for new race cars, we’d take a real good look at the Exige V6 CupR and see how it’s going to stack up once you get to know more about it.
Speaking of getting to know more about, you can find out more details about the Exige V6 CupR after the jump.
The combination of aesthetic and aerodynamic enhancements wasn’t lost on Lotus and how they designed the Exige V6 CupR. You’ll notice a slew of these aesthetic stylings that carry no weight on how the car performs, including the prevalent use of satin on the car. The roof, front-lower bumper and front access panel, have all been dressed in this fancy material. A V6 CupR decal was also added on top of the windshield, as well as Exige decals on the back, just in case people forget what this baby is all about. Additionally, a Lotus decal and a Union Jack decal were added on the enormous carbon fiber rear wing.
As far as useful components are concerned, an array of items have been added, including an aerodynamically optimized front splitter, a rear diffuser and wing, canards, a tow hook and external switches. The tow hook is especially important in case the car stalls or something else happens that requires use of a tow truck.
At the back end, that enormous carbon fiber rear wing is pretty hard to ignore, both for its size and its use in improving the car’s downforce. Aluminum uprights have also been mounted directly onto the chassis while the louvered lightweight tailgate, the mesh grille on the rear transom panel, and the rain lamp, all play roles in ensuring that the car not only competes in tip-top form when it’s on the track, but does so with the sheer fury and handling of a bonafide racing beast.
Finally, the car has been fitted with a choice of either 17- or 18-inch satin-black or diamond-cut wheels. Both wheel types are then wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero Trofeo tires measuring 205/45R17 on the front and 265/45R18 on the rear with AP-Racing four-piston calipers on the front and rear with ventilated and cross-drilled two-piece discs pulling stopping duty.
As a full-fledged race car, the Exige V6 CupR carries pretty much every race-spec component you can fit on the inside. The roll cage and the fire extinguishers are FIA-approved. The steering wheel is removable, allowing the driver to adjust himself relative to his seating position before going out on the track. The driver’s seat and the six-point race harness are both HANS compliant.
Lotus also made use of some fancy material, fitting the interior with the likes of red Alcantara, Atom Textile, Suedex, and even Kevlar. If you wanted to ever dress up the interior of a full-spec race car with the kind of posh aggression it deserves, you might want to take some hints from the Exige V6 CupR. That’s how you fancy up a racing beast.
As expected, the Lotus Exige V6 CupR is powered by a doozy of a powertrain in the form of a mid- transverse-mounted 3.5-liter DOHC V-6 VVT-i engine that comes equipped with a Harrop HTV 1320 supercharger that utilizes Eaton TVS Technology and mated to a six-speed, close-ratio gearbox with a with paddle shift coming as an added option.
The Exige CupR can produce 361 horsepower at 7,200 rpm and 295 pound-feet of torque at 5,000 rpm. While final figures on the car’s capabilities have yet to be announced, Lotus has estimated that the car can hit 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 170 mph.
To ensure that the handling of this car isn’t a problem, a double-wishbone suspension with anti-roll bars on the front and rear play an important role in making the car as sturdy as possible.
| Performance Specs || |
| 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) || 3.8 seconds |
| 0-160 km/h (0-99 mph)|| 7.9 seconds |
| Max Speed || 170 mph |
| Max Power || 361 Horsepower @ 7,200 rpm |
| Max Torque || 295 pound-feet @ 5,000 rpm |
| Unladen Vehicle Mass || 1,040 kg (2,293 pounds) |
The competition-ready Exige V6 CupR is ready to ply its craft in a number of racing competitions in Europe, including the newly announced SRO GT4 European Trophy. Look for the car to be competing in and around Europe this season because it’s too awesome to be sitting on the shelves.
For sheer looks alone, the Lotus Exige V6 CupR is certifiably an eye-catcher. But what can be lost in all of its looks are its capabilities, which, quite frankly, are about as impressive as it gets for a race-tuned Exige. It’s a little curious that Lotus didn’t release the official performance numbers. Could it be that they’re still trying to make some last-minute adjustments?
Looks the part of a true speedster
How much is it?
Is it as powerful as suggested?