The Hennessey Venom GT may not look the part of a Veyron-slayer, but we’ve always come to realize not to judge cars by their outward appearance.
This little monster is the perfect example of what we’re talking about.
The Lotus-derived, American-tuned supercar packs plenty of punch with its 6.2-liter LS9 V8 engine that produces an insane 800 horsepower. And if you just happen to be spending your time at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, you can get a chance to see the Venom in all its glory.
As a preview of the Hennessey madness that will befall all of us come Goodwood, the American tuning company has released a video featuring the Venom GT partaking some test runs to stretch its proverbial legs leading up to the Goodwood Hill Climb in just a few days.
In this video, the Venom GT is being driven by John Heinricy as he tries to corral a traction control-disabled 800-horsepower bullet on a wet track doing some cursory track time ahead of its Goodwood appearance. Enjoy the reel and make sure to mark your calendars for this weekend’s event!
In the midst of all the changes in Lotus ’ neck of the woods is the development of an in-house developed V8 engine with a total output of 562 HP. This engine is being created for the future Esprit , but is also working double time as inspiration for a new 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that will be used for the Elise replacement set to be launched in 2014.
Why the sudden rush for engine development when they’ve never done it before? It could be the fact that Lotus was announced as one of three engine providers for next year’s Indycar series where they will be supplying a 2.2-liter turbocharged V6 developed alongside Engine Devel opments. Another valid reason could be that Lotus heard the responses of an online survey where about $10,000 participants thought it would be better for the company to create their own engines instead of making their customers pay about $100K for vehicles housing Toyota engines. We don’t know what impresses us more; the fact that an online survey was taken or the fact that a big brand like Lotus paid heed to the suggestions made. Either way, Lotus is going full steam ahead on their engine development. Aside from the V8 and the four-cylinder engine, Lotus is also preparing a V6 engine that will be used for a production version of the Eterne .
As for the yo-yo vehicle, the Elan may end up making it to the production line after all, but not until late 2017 (talk about procrastination). Before that, Lotus plans on unveiling the "Ethos" city car in 2014.
There is always an automaker who is turning things upside down in order to spice up sales and get them moving in the right direction. In the past few weeks, it has been made clear that it’s Lotus’ turn to mix things up a bit. Fresh off of their delaying the Esprit supercar and announcing plans to build their own V6 and V8 engines, the British sports car manufacturer has now let loose plans to create more versions of the Evora sports car .
During the launch of the Evora S in San Jose, Lotus Cars USA PR boss, Kevin Smith, confirmed the company’s plans to bring about more version of the Evora beginning with the Evora IPS . This model will add an automatic transmission to the Evora’s list of goodies and will be launched by the end of 2011. Shortly after that, in late 2012, Lotus will produce the Evora S IPS, followed by the biggest announcement of the day: a convertible Evora.
Smith said that the company would like to add an open-top model to the Evora range, but the company is still not sure whether it will feature a targa top or if it will be a roadster. Either way they choose to go, the convertible Lotus Evora won’t find its way to the streets until 2013.
Lotus’ decision to halt plans for the Elan because it looked too much like the Evora model is kind of funny considering the Evora will be undergoing some aesthetic changes for its next generation as part of the "Lotus New Era " outline. All told, the Evora is scheduled to receive no less than 150 changes compared to the current model so we figured it would be appropriate to take a stab at what it would look like.
Expected to debut sometime in 2013, the Lotus Evora is getting a makeover to boost the aggressive factor and make it a viable competitor for Ferrari models. Lotus’ ex-Ferrari design boss, Donato Coco thinks the current Evora’s front end is "too weak" adding, “Even many economy cars look more aggressive.” The new design will hearken back to the Lotus 18 single-seater seen at the beginning of the 1960s.
Lotus was struggling with slow sales of the current Evora and although there was a boost when the Evora S debuted, the company needed to act fast to keep the momentum going. Their "Lotus New Era" outline, as well as plans to build their own V6 and V8 engines, will hopefully keep things going int he right direction.
Lotus is doing a bit of rearranging in their kitchen now that plans for the Elan sports car have been placed on the backburner. Apparently, the British manufacturer is using the money that had been set aside for the Elan to develop their very own lineup of engines.
During an interview, Project Boss Dany Bahar said: "This is a big [financial] hit because it’s expensive to do an engine," says Bahar. "But because the Elan is not happening now we have got capital expenditure headroom for engine development."
The first engine cooking is a V8 that will set up the competition for Ferrari’s V8 engine as seen in the 458 Italia . The new Lotus V8 will deliver between 550 - 570 HP and will undergo testing in July 2011. It will be dropped in the new Esprit model. After that, Lotus will go forth with a new V6 engine that will be used for a production version of the Eterne . Both of the new engines will be combined with an all-new aluminum platform that will be spectacularly light.
As for the Elan, Lotus says that the vehicle’s design was just too close to the Esprit so it would not be making its appearance on the lineup until the closer to the end of the company’s five year plan .
When Lotus announced that a production version Elan would never happen , they also announced that the next generation Evora would receive some aesthetic changes and new trim levels to align it with the rest of the "Lotus New Era" range. These things are typically better on paper then they are in practice, but a leaked image of the future model illustrates these exact predictions.
The new Evora is expected to debut in 2013 and it seems it will include no less than 150 changes compared to the current model. These changes were made in order to make the Evora a serious competitor for the Porsche models in existence. Lotus ’ ex-Ferrari design boss, Donato Coco, said that these changes were necessary to make up for the lack of aggression in the current model’s design. The next Evora will feature this added aggression, but will also continue the same design language that started with the Lotus 18 single-seater at the beginning of the 1960s.
We’ll keep our eyes and ears open for any more information on the future of the Evora so stay tuned!
FifthGear went to the Assen TT circuit in the Netherlands and put together two of the most incredible sports cars to date - the Lotus Evora S and the Porsche Carrera S - for a little one on one action.
The Lotus Evora S is powered by a supercharged Toyota-sourced 3.5-liter V6 engine that delivers a total of 350 HP and more than 300 lb-ft of torque. This means a sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds and a top speed in excess of 172mph. On the other hand, the Porsche Carrera S is powered by a 3.8-liter power with an output of 385 HP and a top speed of 186 mph.
At first glance, the Carrera S seems to have a slight advantage, but who will stand up and fight against all odds? Watch the video to find out!
At the 2010 Paris Auto Show, Lotus unveiled the impressive Elan concept with the full intention of bringing it back in production form by 2013. Be it blind passion or just a mere oversight, Lotus failed to notice that their new concept bared a strong resemblance to their Evora model, so the company is putting the concept on hold indefinitely.
This may sound a little familiar considering we had already heard that the Elan was headed back to the drawing board for looking too much like the Esprit Concept revealed at the same auto show. This begs the question as to whether or not the Esprit will also be delayed because of the same issue, but apparently that is not the case. The Esprit and the Elite will share many of the same components, including a V8 engine that is rumored to deliver around 550 horsepower. This engine will be mated to either a standard dual-clutch transmission or an optional manual.
However, before those puppies are born, Lotus will be working on updating the apparently inspiring Evora with some aesthetic changes and new trim levels to align it with the rest of the "Lotus New Era" range. The Elise and Exige will also be seeing the light of day, but will do so with newer versions "more usable for every day". The production Exige will finally be revealed at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show.
The original Lotus 7 was a no nonsense, no frills kind of car. It was the epitome of Lotus founder Colin Chapman’s design philosophy, “Simplify, then add lightness.” The original Lotus 7 was a tiny little bugger. The Lotus 7 was powered by a small Ford-produced Inline 4 and it ranged in power from a meager 49 HP to a more robust 135 HP. The best part about the Lotus 7 was the fact that it weighed as much as a flea and it was astonishingly quick for the time, hitting 60 MPH in less than 7 seconds.
In 1973, Lotus sold the rights for the 7 design to Caterham who has been building it ever since. While Lotus has continued to build a number of small, lightweight cars, - the Elan and Elise come to mind - they’ve sadly never really had a true successor to the original 7. Diseno-art.com thought that should change though and they’ve designed what they dub the 2011 Lotus New 7 Concept to fill that void.
What’s with automakers bringing out two concepts of the same car all of a sudden? First with the FT-86 and the FT-86 II and now Lotus with its Elan and the Esprit concepts. Both concept vehicles were presented at last year’s Paris Auto Show, so one would think that the next logical step would be production models for those vehicles. Not so.
It seems that Lotus is tossing the two models back and starting fresh from the drawing board because the two concepts just looked too similar. Now, it’s up to Head Designer, Donato Coco, to work on a more optical differentiation between the two sports cars, which makes darn good sense considering the Esprit supercar is powered by a 5.0-liter V8 engine and the Elan sports car only gets a 4.0L V6 engine.
The next generation Lotus Elise is also getting bad feedback due to its enormous weight gain. The current generation weighs only 876 kilos (1931 lbs), but the next generation model will weigh up to 1,100 kilos (2425 lbs). Lotus has yet to decide the fate of the Elise, but the Elan and Esprit will have to undergo some massive changes before getting launched onto the market in 2013.