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2000 Lotus 340R

2000 Lotus 340R

A roofless, doorless, limited-production Lotus Elise

When you’re a company like Lotus, you can build things that are a little out of the ordinary from time to time. Take, for example, the Lotus 340R. It’s a special-edition model derived from the Lotus Elise. It shares the same underpinnings, but features a custom-built body shell with no roof or doors to speak of – that’s right, the only way to get into this bad boy is to jump over the edge. There’s more to it than its unique body style, though. Only 340 examples were built, all of which sold out prior to the car’s official debut, and it comes equipped with exclusive tires made by Yokohama.

The 340R is a mid-engined roadster, and all 340 examples were built with the same silver and black two-tone finish. It was built at the brand’s Hethel factory and was never slated for the U.S. market, so it’s not exactly road legal here in the states. It is, however, road-legal in the U.K. – the market it was originally built for. That said, there are a few that may have crossed the big drink to the U.S., but there is only one that is claimed to be road-legal in the states, and that is the one pictured here.

The car you see in our photo gallery was listed for sale on Ebay back in 2014, and, as of this writing, it’s now being sold by a local dealer in Hollywood, Florida, with just over 3,500 miles. So, let’s take a few minutes to go over this special-edition model and see what it brings to the table.

Continue reading to see what made the Lotus 340R so special.

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2013 - 2015 Lotus Exige S Roadster

2013 - 2015 Lotus Exige S Roadster

A few weeks before the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, Lotus announced they would "blow the top off" at the show. Back then, we all thought that we would see a Convertible version of the Evora, but we were so wrong. Lotus has decided to bring out the fastest roadster ever: the Exige S Roadster.

Based off the new Exige S, the roadster model will be powered by the same supercharged 3.5-liter V-6 engine that delivers a total of 345 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. This engine sprints the car from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds and to 100 mph in 8.5 seconds. Being that this is a Roadster, safety precautions deem it necessary to lower the top speed to 233 km/h (145 mph).

The Exige S Roadster weighs just 1,166 kg (2,570 pounds) and features the same design elements as the coupe, except of course for its factory-fitted soft top roof that makes the car look even more muscular than the coupe.

Now for the bad news: the new Lotus Exige S Roadster won’t make it to the U.S. market, as it will only be offered in markets like Europe and Asia.

UPDATE 5/22/2013: Lotus has just unveiled the official pricing for the Exige S Roadster and is now available for order. See more after the jump

Updated 10/24/2014: Lotus announced that the Exige S will also be offered with an automatic transmission. This new option will increase the car’s price by about $3k. Details after the jump.

Hit the jump to read more about the Lotus Exige S Roadster.

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Video: Hennessey Venom GT Spyder Delivered to Aerosmith Front Man

Video: Hennessey Venom GT Spyder Delivered to Aerosmith Front Man

Hennessey’s Venom GT coupe is a one of the baddest cars around and is limited to only five units and priced from an amazing $725,000. The Spyder, which was announced a few months after the coupe version, will be also limited to only five units and is a little bit more expensive at $1.1 million.

The first unit has been delivered to Steven Tyler — the lead singer of the Boston-based rock band Aerosmith, for those that live under a rock — and today Hennessey has unveiled a video from the delivery. We are not too sure if he only received the car, or if the Latvian model, Jula Lescova, was offered as a bonus, but still the video is a great watch! Of course, you’ll have to try pay attention to the car — it is after all the star of this video! The extracurricular scenery isn’t too bad either…

Let us know in the comments section bellow if you will prefer the car or the model!

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2013 Hennessey Venom GT Spyder

2013 Hennessey Venom GT Spyder

The sleek and sexy Hennessey Venom GT became a successful model in a very short time and Hennessey is hoping to repeat that success with an open top version of the same sports car. The new Hennessey Venom GT Spyder will be offered with a removable top and will only be produced in a limited run of five units, two of which have already been spoken for. Deliveries will begin in Summer 2012 and prices will start from $1.1 million, about $150,000 more than the Coupe’s top version.

The Venom GT Spyder will be powered by the same Chevrolet sourced V8 engine found in the Coupe with an output of 1,200 HP at 6,500 rpm and 1,155 lb-ft of torque at 4,200 rpm. Because of the added weight from the removable roof, performance numbers should be a tad bit slower than the Coupe, which sprints from 0-60 mph in 2.5 seconds and to 200 mph in 15.9 seconds, on its way up to a top speed of 275 mph. The engine will more than likely send its power to the rear wheels via a Ricardo 6-speed gearbox and handling will be facilitated by a KW variant three-adjustable coilover suspension.

As far as its design goes, the Venom GT Spyder will start off with the Lotus Elise base and will follow along the same extreme design lines as its Coupe sibling. We imagine it will also feature the same active aero system with adjustable rear wing that will deploy under varying conditions on both the road and racetrack.

"With the hardtop in place, the Venom GT offers a very visceral, raw, driving experience," said Hennessey CEO, Don Goldman. "With the hardtop removed, the wind and the growl of the twin turbo V8 will offer our clients an even greater driving sensation."

The 1,200 HP will make the Venom GT Spyder the most powerful convertible in the world. Will it also be the fastest? We believe it will, but Hennessey will have to keep that 275 mph top speed intact.

UPDATE 06/01/2012: Following the delivery of the first Venom GT Spyder to Steven Tyler, Hennessey has dropped a pretty impressive picture gallery for their Venom GT Spyder. Enjoy!

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2012 Lotus Evora R2R by Galpin Auto Sports

2012 Lotus Evora R2R by Galpin Auto Sports

We reckon Galpin Auto Sports needed a break from all those customized Ford vehicles they’re bringing to the 2011 SEMA Auto Show so they turned their attention towards a few sports cars from across the pond. One of these vehicles is a 2012 Lotus Evora, which GAS took the challenge of reinventing from a road-going sports car into a fully-dressed track-spec race car.

The result is the Evora R2R, a car that features plenty of aerodynamic upgrades, including a new front splitter, a new rear wing, new side skirts made from aluminum, black racing decals, racing seats dressed in fine Alcantara, and a new set of 19" (front) and 20" (rear) flat-back racing wheels.

To uphold its new race car identity, Galpin Auto Sports also added a new Flowmaster exhaust system, clearing way for the sports car’s 3.5-liter V6 engine to receive an increased output of 300 horsepower, up from the 280-horsepower output of the standard road-going roadster.

All told, Galpin Auto Sports accomplished what it always seems to do best. Impressive modifications all around are nothing new to these guys and they proved that yet again with the Lotus Evora R2R.

UPDATE 05/09/12: Galpin Auto Sports has released a new video of the Evora R2R, complete with a detailed look behind the history and development of the sports car. Galpin Lotus brand manager Stuart McIntosh narrates the whole thing so give it a watch!

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Lotus Seven prepares for a come-back

Lotus Seven prepares for a come-back

Everyone knows that Lotus has very big plans for the future. With a new Esprit and new generations for every existing model in the line-up the company seems to be pretty busy. But during a recent interview with AutoEvolution, Lotus CEO Dany Bahar has offered an even more exciting news: the legendary Seven prepares for a come-back.

During the interview, Bahar said: "I’ve seen some drawings [of the Seven revival] and they look very nice, we have to see. It’s always possible, it’s just a matter of timing." And that statement comes as a confirmation to lots of rumors about a possible Seven revival.

Apparently, a new Seven "would fit perfectly in the automaker’s new range, being the final element that would really allow it to offer something for every kind of speed enthusiasts."

The original Seven has been built by Lotus from 1957 to 1972 as a small, simple, lightweight two-seater open-top sports car. After Lotus ended production of the Seven, Caterham bought the rights to it.

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Lotus Elise investigated by NHTSA over oil leaks

Lotus Elise investigated by NHTSA over oil leaks

My father had a habit of pointing out "it’s always the one ya least suspect." If you asked the public what they thought the Lotus Elise’s reliability was, the answer was a resounding "very good." However, now this Rembrandt of the racetrack has a small smudge and is now under investigation for a possible mechanical deficiency concerning the oil cooler.

The 2005-2006 Lotus Elise is at the center of this investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(NHTSA). This problem centers on the right front oil cooler which can potentially come loose and spray inside the wheel well and the engine bay which can lead to a fire. This problem is described as" .. [Complaints centered on] an oil cooler line [that] had failed causing oil to spray within the engine compartment area, and/or near one of the wheel or brake assemblies." It is important to note that no one was hurt due to this malfunction although one person’s car did catch fire. That being said, the NHTSA has received 17 complaints and have calculated that around 4,400 Elises may be affected due to this malfunction.

An important distinction to note is that although this investigation is ongoing, a recall has not been issued for the Elise.

If you were considering a Lotus and now are suddenly running like Usain Bolt towards another sports car, think again because all of us here at TopSpeed would still love to have this pocket racer in our garage. Its combination of incredibly reliable Toyota innards and speed make the Lotus Elise a must have for any car enthusiast. Take this complaint for what it is; a small bump in the road for a great vehicle.

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Lotus will develop new Evora models; Convertible version in the works

Lotus will develop new Evora models; Convertible version in the works

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.

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2011 Lotus New 7 Concept

2011 Lotus New 7 Concept

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.

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Video: 2014 Lotus Elite convertible promo

Video: 2014 Lotus Elite convertible promo

We have already reported that Lotus is preparinga convertible version for the 2014 Elite sports car, but today we actually get to see every angle of the beautiful vehicle, including the clean hardtop as it tucks itself away neatly behind the rear seats, and the 2+2 coach cabin.

This is Lotus’ first promotional video for the vehicle set to take on models like the Ferrari California, Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster, andAston Martin DB9 Volante.

As with the coupe model, the future drop top Elite will be powered by a 5.0-liter V8 engine that produces around 542 HP with a 0-60 mph time of around 3.5 seconds and a top speed of 196 mph. An R version will develop an amazing 612 HP. The 2014 Lotus Elite convertible will also be offered with F1 inspired technologies like KERS as well as a twin-clutch transmission that help improve fuel consumption. The hybrid will offer emissions as low as 215 g/km.

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Lotus prepares to blow the roof off the Elite

Lotus prepares to blow the roof off the Elite

Now that Lotus has unveiled its new design direction at the Paris Auto Show, the British manufacturer is ready to dish out a serving of the buffet they have prepared.

The specific model that is to serve as an appetizer to whet our appetites is a drop top version of the Lotus Elite sports car set to compete with models like the Ferrari California, Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster, and Aston Martin DB9 Volante.

The car is a long way away from becoming a prototype, but it is already rumored that the roof will be made of a combination of metal and glass. This will allow lots of light to enter the cabin when the hood is in place, but will facilitate keeping the overall weight down. The top will be fully electric and will tuck into a space behind the rear passenger seats.

Like with the coupe version, the future roadster will be powered by a 5.0-liter V8 engine that produces around 542 HP with a 0-60 mph time of around 3.5 seconds and a top speed of 196 mph. An R version will develop an amazing 612 HP.

The new model will be priced at £115,000 ($180,000 at the current exchange rates) and should go on sale in 2014.

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Video: Lotus 2Eleven crashed at Nurburgring

With 252 HP under the hood and a weight of 1,477 lbs you would say that the Lotus 2-Eleven is not a difficult car to handle. However, on a race track like the Nurburgring, things are a little bit different.

While there are no details on what exactly happened, the video is more than explicit. Apparently, the driver was driving too fast and lost control while trying to take a corner. The car ended in a bulwark, but luckily, the driver was able to get out of the car on his own two feet, and with little injury. The car, on the other hand, saw the short end of this destructive stick.

The 2-Eleven makes the 0 to 60 mph sprint in just 3.6 seconds and can hit a top speed of 155 mph, so it’s apparent that the power under this hood is just too much for some of its owners!

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2010 Lotus Elise SC and Exige S RGB Special Editions

2010 Lotus Elise SC and Exige S RGB Special Editions

Lotus, in cooperation with Roger Becker (former Director of Vehicle Engineering for Lotus), unveiled the Lotus Elise SC and Exige S RGB Special Editions. Both models are the first in a series of special editions that will celebrate the final run of European specification 1.8 liter Elise and Exige sportscars.

The Elise SC RGB Special Edition is powered by a supercharged 1.8 liter engine that develops a total of 217 hp and rockets the car from 0 to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. The Lotus Exige S RGB Special Edition gets a supercharged and intercooled 1.8 liter engine with 257 HP and a sprint time of 4 seconds.

Both models will be offered with a choice of four colors: aspen white, starlight black, solar yellow, & carbon grey. The special editions will feature sports and touring packages as standard. They will be distinguished by a numbered interior plaque, Roger Becker’s signature on the side of the bodywork, and special monochrome Lotus nose badge.

“I am honoured that Lotus has named these two special editions after me, especially as it allows me to offer the customer my favourite specifications. The past 44 years have been an incredible journey and I’m looking forward to watching Lotus progress in the future, I have no doubt that the company will continue to go from strength to strength,”
said Roger Becker.

Press release and specifications after the jump.

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2011 Lotus Elise

2011 Lotus Elise

The English sports car builder Lotus has refreshed their lightweight Elise roadster with a new front end and have revealed the first details on the 2011 Elise facelift. The redesigned sports car is built on top of a new lightweight structure made up of extruded aluminum alloy bonded with epoxy as opposed to traditional welds that add additional mass featuring integral steel seat belt supports and lightweight rear subframe which serves as the centerpiece for the fully independent suspension that utilizes unequal length wishbones, mono tube gas dampers from Bilstein, coil springs from Eibach and a front anti roll bar.

The 2011 Elise will be powered by a 1.6 Liter naturally aspirated water cooled inline four cylinder engine that delivers a total of 134 HP and 118 lb-ft of torque and is mated to a six speed gearbox. The combination is good for a 0 to 60 MPH sprint time of 6.7 seconds and is capable of reaching a 124 MPH top speed. The new lightweight Lotus Elise sports car will go on sale this April in U.K. and will be priced at 26,550 GBP.

Updated 04/22/2010: A set of new high res images added to the picture gallery. Check it out!

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Lotus Elise Club Racer

2010 Lotus Elise Club Racer

Lotus Australia has just received an addition to their lineup fresh off the heels of delivering their first truly all new car in years, the Evora, and the release of a hard core track tuned Lotus Exige Cup, the lightweight English sports car builder has just revealed another version of their compact thrill machine. The Lotus Elise Club Racer is a very simple and straightforward sports car that borrows a few shades of paint from Colin Chapman’s personal pallet from the 1960s, colors like Elite Yellow, Carbon Grey, Sky Blue and Old English White.

According to the Director of Lotus Cars, Luke Bennett, "Special Editions of the award winning Elise have always proved popular with our customers around the world, and I expect the Elise Club Racer to be no different. We have taken colour schemes from our past, used on the Elite and Elan in the 1960s and cleverly brought them up to date with a modern feel to the interior. The whole design package is modern with a classic twist, which of course matches the peerless ride and handling of a Lotus and the convertible experience of the Elise perfectly."

Called the Elise Club Racer, the new lightweight English sports car is based on the 134 HP version of the Lotus Elise S and is scheduled to arrive in showrooms on September 15th and go on sale for around $40,000. The car makes use of silver and black highlights in the interior as well as an anthracite anodized gear knob and handbrake with the Club Racer "CR" logo embroidered everywhere. The Lotus engineers even saw fit to incorporate a smaller diameter steering wheel and a set of lightweight six spoke alloys for that extra sporty look and feel. The Elise Club Racer will make its official debut in February 2010 and will be priced at $72,990.

Press release after the jump.

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2008 Lotus "Entry Level" 2-Eleven

2008 Lotus "Entry Level" 2-Eleven

Lotus unveiled today the the entry level 2-Eleven and extensive range of Lotus Sport performance options. The new 2-Eleven is priced at 34,695 euro.

The new entry-level 2-Eleven weights only 720 kg and is powered by a naturally aspirated, high revving 189 hp engine from the Elise R. It makes the 0 to 60 mph sprint in just 3.8 seconds and can hit a top speed of 150 mph.

The addition of the Aero Pack gives the ability to change the high speed balance of the car through adjustment of the rear wing angle: with the wing set at maximum attack over 10 % of the vehicle’s weight is generated in downforce at 100 mph (160 kph). The Aero Pack consists of a race proven adjustable carbon fiber rear wing and to provide front to rear aerodynamic balance, a lengthened composite front splitter is incorporated. Even in SVA trim with the road legal aerodynamic aids the 2-Eleven produces 60 kg (132 lbs) of downforce at 100 mph (160 km/h)

The full Lotus paint palette including Lifestyle colours, Metallic colours and Premium colours is available to further customise the 2-Eleven. The Launch colour scheme along with the Red Scorpion, Orange Bobcat, Yellow Hornet and Green Dragon schemes are all available as a cost option.

Press release after jump.

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2007 Lotus 2-Eleven

2007 Lotus 2-Eleven

Lotus Sport, the race car performance arm of Lotus Cars Ltd, today unveiled the new Lotus 2-Eleven. Launched at the 77th annual Geneva International Motor Show, the Lotus 2-Eleven is aimed at the true track day enthusiast, taking Colin Chapman’s philosophy of ‘Performance Through Lightweight’ to its most extreme level yet.

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2006 Lotus Elise S

2006 Lotus Elise S

Lotus is back with an entry level Elise that is set to propel the Hethel based sports car manufacturer further up the sales charts. The loss of the K series engine had temporarily created a hole in Lotus’ portfolio and its disappearance from the range was not good news for
Pure sportscar lovers right across the globe.

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