The Lotus Elan Could Come Back, and It’ll Take the Porsche 718 Boxster Head On
The iconic Lotus Elan could return to the market after nearly three decades. The British company is reportedly considering a revival of the nameplate for a brand-new drop-top sports car that will slot above the Elise in the lineup. The revival won’t happen until 2021 though, as that is when Lotus will have the proper platform for such a car.
Lotus’ Experience With AWD Stretches Back 50 Years, So They Know What They’re Doing On The Evija
Lotus, the legendary race car manufacturer turned sports car maker, unveiled the Evija earlier this year, its first all-electric car and, at the same time, its first hypercar and first AWD road-going model. The luscious beast features four electric motors, one behind each wheel, combining for a mind-boggling (and Pininfarina-beating) output of 1,971 horsepower, making it the fastest British hypercar. While a first in many aspects, it’s actually not the first Lotus where the power reaches all four wheels.
When the Evija was unveiled, showcasing Chinese giant Geely’s clear intention to revive the brand and make it more profitable than ever, most of the automotive world took a step back in awe but not everybody was as impressed by the $2.3 million car that will be built in a limited run of 130 units. We were among the skeptics, questioning whether or not the Evija is a clever way for Lotus to increase its revenue by building something it has never built before. We’ve also questioned the sudden move from ICE-powered cars to EVs without prior introduction of any hybrid model. But one area where Lotus does have some past experience is that of four-wheel-driven cars.
Back in the ’60s, when teams were racing on track to win races and off-track to build the cars capable to win those races, Lotus thought it could come up with a more maneuverable car than everybody else and that’s when the idea of having a system that would dispatch power to all four wheels instead of just two emerged. Sure, it’s nothing like the AWD technology on the Evija but, at least, Lotus can say it did build such cars in its storied past.
The List of Predecessors to the Lotus Evija That You Didn’t Know Existed
Lotus just took a big step into the future by launching the Evija, its first-ever hypercar and first fully electric vehicle. Also likely to become the world most powerful production car, the Evija is a rather unusual car for an automaker known for affordable and lightweight sports cars. But as surprising as the Evija might seem, the truth is Lotus has been working with electrified drivetrains since the late 2000s. That’s a full decade of EVs and hybrids that haven’t received the attention they deserved. Granted, they’re all concept cars that never made it into production, but their existence signalled Lotus’ intentions. Also, several automakers based a handful of electrified vehicles on Lotus platforms. Let’s have a closer look at them.
Lotus Isn’t Planning Another Hypercar But a New Sports Car Is Coming in 2020 - Will It Be Electric, Though?
Lotus’ first real hypercar, the all-electric Evija stunned enthusiasts and pundits alike last week and is a sign of things to come for the Geely-owned British sports car specialist. But, in the meantime, Lotus is also preparing to rejuvenate its otherwise dated lineup of more affordable sports cars. The new model, that will become its bread and butter in the following years, should arrive next year and pop up in showrooms by 2021. The big question, however, is this: will it be electric as we’ve heard in the past few months?
Taking a look through Lotus’ current catalog is akin to taking a trip down memory lane as you see old friends such as the Elise, the Exige, and, lastly, the Evora - the only one still available Stateside - soldiering on. It’s not uncommon for a low-volume manufacturer to push the envelope when it comes to keeping a model on life support before there’s an influx of capital that allows it to create something new but there’s no denying that the entire Lotus lineup is very much long in the tooth by now and in dire need of an update.
Here’s Why the Evija Supercar Will Save Lotus
Lotus just unveiled the Evija, and it set some serious benchmark for itself. Its first-ever supercar, the Evija is also the first all-electric production vehicle powered by electricity alone. On top of that, Lotus claims that it will become the world’s most powerful production car with an output of 2,000 PS, which converts to an unbelievable 1,972 horsepower. Lotus also promises a 250-mile range and charging times of only nine minutes. Many claim that Lotus made a mistake with this car, but the Evija could be the vehicle that saves the British brand financially.
The Lotus Evija isn’t quick enough for a near-2,000 horsepower EV hypercar
Lotus has shown its most powerful and most extreme car ever, the Evija all-electric hypercar. In fact, according to the specs published by the U.K.-based sports car maker (now owned by Chinese giant Geely), it will be the most powerful production car ever made, just nudging ahead of the likes of thePininfarina Battista.
It’s a truly gorgeous looking thing, with typical Lotus design but rendered in a more futuristic manner that not only makes the car stand out, but at the same time it makes it look far more exclusive than anything the automaker has previously sold. However, while I love the way it looks, there’s something a bit peculiar about its claimed performance - to me, the amount of power and torque and the declared benchmark sprint time just don’t add up. I think it should be faster than they say it is, so keep on reading as I try to elaborate as to why.
Opinion: The Lotus Evija is a Big Mistake for the Brand
The Lotus Evija, a £1.7 million ($2.1 million at current exchange rates) all-electric hypercar, has just been announced, and I’m already wondering just WTF Lotus is thinking. Sure, it probably has a lot to do with Geely backing the brand now – Lotus actually has some money to play with – but we’re talking about a brand that has been selling $50,000 - $120,000 cars for years. We’re talking about a company that posted its first self-proclaimed profit in years back in August of 2017. And, we’re talking about a company that hasn’t presented an all-new car in more than a decade (hello Lotus Evora) and has managed to soldier on by building random and slightly more potent versions of existing cars. Yet, here we are looking at a $2 million Lotus. This just doesn’t seem like the right move, and I have good reason why.
Did Lotus Just Rewrite The Book on All-Electric Supercars with the 2020 Evija?
Lotus hasn’t released a truly new car since it launched the Evora back 2008. Since then, it’s made continuous improvements to it, the Elise, and Exige, but the new 2020 Lotus Evija is the first new Lotus in over a decade. I might be saying this a little early, but I say it with confidence: Boy was it worth the wait. The basics of this car are simple – it’s all-electric, delivers close to 2,000 horsepower, and has a claimed range of 250 miles on the WLTP scale. That’s not bad. Lotus says it’ll get to 60 mph in under three seconds which isn’t all that radical when you look at other supercars or even the Tesla Model S P100D, but what it does beyond 60 is damn near-mythical and outrageous at the same time.
Lotus Confirms Evija Name For its 1,000-Horsepower Hypercar; What Does the Teaser Video Tell Us?
Lotus’ highly anticipated hypercar is ready to emerge from the shadows. The 1,000-horsepower maniac will be unveiled on July 16 in London. Lotus also plans to hold a sneak peek of the model at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this week. But before any of that, we finally have confirmation on what has become a point of intense scrutiny about this model. Finally, the Lotus hypercar codenamed “Type 130” has a name. It’s called the Lotus Evija (“Ee-vi-ya”- meaning "the first in existence” or ’the living one,") and it’s ready to take the hypercar world by storm.
Lotus Wants to Raise the Roof at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed
Lotus is coming to the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed with a massive amount of cars. Not only it will display its current range of Elise, Exige, and Evora models, but it will also show the new Evora GT4 Concept race car and a vintage Type 25 Formula One car. On top of that, it will send eight different cars up the Goodwood hill climb.
The Lotus Type 130 Electric Hypercar Will Have an Interesting Name; Will Offer More Room than a Ford GT
Lotus’ long-awaited entry into the fast and nutty world of exotic cars is finally taking shape. The first order of business? Finding a name for said exotic. Well, it looks like Lotus can cross that off its list. The model that we know today as the “Type 130” will eventually be called the “Evija.” The name revelation comes by way of Auto Express, which discovered a trademark filed by Lotus earlier this month pertaining to the supposed name. A quick look at the U.K.’s Intellectual Property Office reveals that the Evija trademark covered a number of classes, including “land vehicles, parts and fittings for land vehicles included in Class 12,” “Repair and maintenance of vehicles, custom built construction of vehicles” (Class 37), and “Engineering services, vehicle, and engine design services” (Class 42). If that doesn’t scream like a trademark for a future vehicle, I don’t know what does. Group Lotus Limited filed the trademark on June 18, 2019.
2020 Lotus SUV
The idea of a Lotus crossover might make some fans of the British sports carmaker a little squeamish, but if Lotus is going to stick around, it’s going to need a higher-volume model with more mass-market appeal. Lotus revealed that it’s developing a compact crossover in 2017, but we still don’t know much about its underpinnings and design. However, a batch of patent images that surfaced the Web provided some hints as to what the British crossover will look like, and our designer created a rendering of the vehicle.
So what do we actually know about this crossover so far? First, it will be built in China and launched exclusively in that market before expanding to Europe and Japan. No word on U.S. availability just yet, but it’s very likely that North America will get it too. Second, Lotus aims to win SUV enthusiasts with one of the lightest and most dynamic vehicles on the market. "The SUV market changes as well – it’s not just cars that are six feet high and wide now, it’s a huge market that’s becoming more segmented. There is a niche within that for a Lotus crossover that is light and aerodynamic and handles like nothing else," former Lotus CEO, Jean-Marc Gales told Autocar in October 2017. Lotus began testing the crossover in 2019, but the prototype is just an old Lynk & Co 01 model. As a reminder, Lynk & Co is owned by Geely, the same Chinese company that owns Lotus (and Volvo for that matter).
Updated 06/24/2019: Our spy photographers caught the very first mules for the upcoming Lotus SUV out for the first testing session.
The 2019 Lotus Evora GT410 Brings Redefined Performance to China
The Lotus Evora is already ten years old as of 2019, but it’s still going strong. Although Lotus is working on a successor, the current Evora is still being used as a base for special-edition sports cars. The latest model is called the GT410 and was unveiled in China, at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. This isn’t the first Evora to sport a "GT410" badge — a one-off was built for the Jim Clark Trust Foundation in 2018 — but it’s the first production run to feature the nameplate.
The 2020 Lotus Evora GT4 Concept Previews The Official 2020 Race Car
The Lotus Evora has been around for a fair few years, hasn’t it? It was introduced a decade ago and, since then, not much has changed about what was Evo Magazine’s Car of the Year in 2009. Now, however, Lotus tries to remind us that the Evora is yet to kick the bucket by introducing a revised GT4-spec racing version. The Evora GT4 Concept is also a way for Lotus to announce that it’s launching the Lotus Driving Academy in China and will go on a tour with its new Chinese works drivers to showcase the car’s prowess.
For starters, let me tell you this isn’t really a concept - not like, say, the Volkswagen I.D. Roomzz is a concept. I mean just look at it, for all intents and purposes it looks ready to race. It doesn’t have cartoonishly large wheels or anything that could be considered out of order on a racing car. What it is, is the updated version of the Evora Cup GT4. The Cup GT4 model was based on the 2009 Lotus Evora Type 124 Prototype that previewed Lotus’ambitions to return to GT-based endurance racing. Now, the Evora looks meaner than ever, and we may see it race Stateside too, as well as in Europe.
Lotus Flexes its Chinese Backing With a New Hypercar
Lotus made its presence felt at Auto Shanghai 2019 in the cheekiest of ways, revealing a teaser sketch of the Type 130, the automaker’s first-ever fully electric hypercar. You would have thought that Lotus would drop a bombshell in Shanghai by revealing the actual Type 130, but the British automaker is saving that for a rainy day. The actual date of the Type 130’s unveiling has yet to be finalized, but Lotus has indicated that it will take place in London “later this year.” It seems like a waste of a good auto show reveal, but we trust that Lotus has something special planned for the début of its first-ever hypercar. Expect that debut to be a spectacle, not only because of the Type 130’s stature as an EV hypercar but, just as important, its place as the first all-new Lotus model since 2008.
The Lotus Exige isn’t exactly a spring chicken, is it? With being on the market since 2000, Lotus has had to do a lot to keep this baby relevant on a market that chews up non-conformers and spits them out like rotten sausage on a hot day. The Exige is currently in its third generation (that’s the third series in Lotus language) and has been offered in more forms than you can count on one hand. The Lotus Exige Sport 410 is the latest in the Series 3 lineup, and it serves as a replacement for the Sport 380 gap-filler that sat between the Exige Cup 430 and the Exige Sport 350. And, despite all of its Cup 430 DNA, the 410 has been tuned to be more road-friendly. The front and rear spoilers create some 331 pounds of downforce at speed, and there’s plenty of carbon fiber to help keep the weight in check. More importantly, the 3.5-liter V-6 under the hood has been sourced directly from the Exige Cup 430. It is tuned down to 410 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque, but with a dry weight of just 2,324 pounds, the Sport 410 can soar to 60 mph in 3.3 seconds on the way to a top speed of 180 mph – that’s as fast as the meaner Cup 430. We felt that this Lotus masterpiece didn’t get enough love after its debut, so we’ve decided to make it our wallpaper of the day. We’ve picked out our favorite and posted it below.
The new Lotus Hypercar will be Built in Partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering
Strategic alliance is the best way to go forward these days. We recently heard about Ford and Volkswagen collaborating, and this time, it is Lotus and Williams Advanced Engineering. The two companies will work hand-in-hand to share “research and development into advanced propulsion technologies.” The newly-wed companies have not provided any details on their forthcoming projects yet, but rumors suggest they could be working on the upcoming Lotus all-electric hypercar.
You’ll be Shocked When You Find out Who Geely-Owned Lotus will Soon Compete Against
Geely is one of China’s automotive giants, an industrial colossus that owns Volvo, Proton, Lynk & Co, the London Taxi Company and as of 2017 sports car manufacturer Lotus, as well. Its most recent acquisition was made with the intent to turn it into one of the world’s leading maker of sports cars, to rival the likes of Porsche, maybe even Aston Martin and McLaren.
Jay Leno’s Garage Gives Some Love to the 1966 Lotus (Ford) Cortina
The Lotus Cortina, or Ford Cortina Lotus as it has also become known, is the street-going version of the Group 2 touring car that became one of the most famous and successful models of its kind in the ’60s, routinely hitting above its weight and beating Mustangs, Falcons and even the odd Ford Galaxie in the British Saloon Car Championship, the European Touring Car Championship and beyond. Originally, only 1,000 Cortinas were built to meet homologation needs, and the car in the video is a genuine one.
The original Lotus Cortina, based on the Mark 1 Consul Cortina, was launched in 1963 and received comprehensive modifications by Lotus with its beating heart being a 1.5-liter twin-cam four-cylinder engine designed by Harry Mundy. The example shown in this episode of Jay Leno’s Garage has been painstakingly restored to better-than-new condition by Jim Hall, Leno’s chief fabricator, after spending three decades neglected at the mercy of the elements.