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Lotus Eyeing Detuned Version Of Evora In The US Market

Lotus Eyeing Detuned Version Of Evora In The US Market

Automaker has to abide by America’s tough emissions rules

After a short hiatus from the U.S. market, the Lotus Evora is expected to make a nice comeback, albeit in a slightly different form from the ones being offered in Europe today. A report from Automotive News is pointing at a May 2016 return for the Evora 2+2. The only caveat is that it’s going to be a detuned, entry-level version of the V-6-powered Evora 400. Before anybody starts slamming their fists on the table, it’s important to know that the decision to bring a detuned version of the Evora hinged primarily on Lotus having to meet America’s emissions requirements.

So it’s not all bad. Lotus is just trying to follow the rules, even if it comes at the cost of offering an Evora with less power. The upside is that it’ll have better fuel economy. Just as important, the Evora has since been updated from the last iteration that was sold here to ensure that it complied with the stricter airbag regulations.

Now, about that engine. Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales intimated to Automotive News the company’s goal of dropping its carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S. by three percent per year over a five-year period. For Lotus to make that work, it would have to offer a detuned version of the Evora 400, which would entail dropping the sports car’s supercharger entirely. Doing so would reduce the V-6 engine’s power, but it would also improve fuel economy and in turn, help the company achieve that five-year emissions goal it placed on itself.

Granted, Gales admitted that the supercharger-less Evora is just one of the options he’s looking into. But it is a scenario that’s more realistic than removing the supercharged V-6 entirely and replacing it with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder. That door is less likely to be opened because the company doesn’t see the short- and long-term benefits it could have on the Evora.

For now, this news is a matter of taking the good with the bad. The good news is that the Evora’s vacation from the U.S. market is over. The bad news is that it’s really not going to be the Evora 400 that Europe and other markets currently have. But I’m sure American customers would learn to accept that, especially if the U.S.-spec Evora, especially if it comes at a much cheaper price than the $90,000 price tag of the Evora 400, and if it will also come with a roadster variant in 2017.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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Lotus Elise Will Return To US, But Not Before 2020

Lotus Elise Will Return To US, But Not Before 2020

There have been a lot of cool European cars that the U.S. has missed out on over the years. Sometimes it’s because the automakers assume we wouldn’t be interested, but sometimes it’s simply because the cars can’t meet our much more strict emissions and/or safety regulations. Such was the case with the Lotus Elise, which was such a low volume model that it received a number of exemptions from the NHTSA in order to be sold here. But those exemptions had time limits, and when they expired, Lotus had to pull the car out of the market.

Now it seems that the Elise will returning to American shores, but not for a little while. Lotus has decided that it would be too difficult and expensive to retrofit the necessary safety equipment, which would include smart airbags as well as side airbags. And not only that, it could add as much as 220 pounds to the car’s weight. So we’ll only be getting the Elise once Lotus brings out a new generation of the car, one that is designed from the outset to meet U.S. safety regulations. That means waiting until 2020, but at least it’ll still happen eventually.

Continue reading for the full story.

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A Caterham/Lotus Team Could Elevate Both Makes in the U.S.

A Caterham/Lotus Team Could Elevate Both Makes in the U.S.

It is not a new concept that Caterham remains one of the most popular boutique sports cars in all of Europe, despite the fact that it only builds about 500 models each year. It is also not a shocker to know that England’s former boutique powerhouse, Lotus, has taken a huge hit in recent years, but still has an international presence.

Caterham’s flagship car, the Seven, is built with extreme care to keep the power-to-wight ratio as high as possible. This has worked so far, but Caterham needs to expand into other places, like the U.S., which only sees about 50 Caterham Sevens per year. Caterham is careful, though, and that’s what has made it the success it is today, so expansion needs to be carefully plotted out.

One thing that could help Caterham expand is to join forces with a like-minded car company to produce high-quality, lightweight sports cars that the American market would enjoy. One possibility is Lotus, which is sinking fast, but already offers up its lightweight bodies and chassis to other companies, like Hennessey, to build into lightweight monsters, so why not Caterham?

Combining the two could result in sweet profits for both, as Lotus could provide its lightweight chassis technology and its recognized name, and Caterham could provide its high-revving performance engine technology. With the Lotus name and body, and Caterham technology heading to the U.S., Caterham gains a stronger foothold in the U.S. and Lotus gets a chance to regain its presence in the states, all while sharing the cost and profits.

What’s even more telling is the fact that both Caterham and Lotus have been linked to the Renault Alpine and they have teamed up in the past. So there is the possibility that there are already talks between the two companies. This could also spill over into the anticipated manufacture of the Nissan-built Infiniti Emerg-E.

For now, this is all just a bit of speculation, but the writing is on the wall and the benefits are certainly there for all parties.

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Video: Hennessey Venom GT blasts through British countryside

Video: Hennessey Venom GT blasts through British countryside

Where’s the best place to try and warm up the engine of a high-powered sportscar? Why, the countryside, of course!

Not a lot of car, not a lot of cops, and a lot of open pavement waiting at your disposal. Sounds like a good day to let loose Hennessey’s Venom GT.

In this video released by Hennessey Performance Engineering, we have yet again the Lotus Elise-based Venom GT doing some test runs, this time in a small town near the Silverstone race track in the UK.

Watching - and listening - to the video harks us back to the time when sports cars sounded this piercingly sharp. As the driver pushes the pedal to the ground, you can hear this sharp shriek that on any other thing would sound deplorably horrible; but on a sportscar, it’s music to our ears.

And the best part is, the model used in this video is just the base model of the Venom GT. Imagine what it would be like to have 1,200 horsepower underneath that hood.
Goosebumps.

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2010 Lotus Evora U.S. Pricing Announced

2010 Lotus Evora U.S. Pricing Announced

The lightweight English sports car maker Lotus has just announced pricing for the U.S. market version of their latest creation, the 2010 Evora, a mid engine, V6 powered, 2+2 that is set to go on sale sometime in the first quarter of 2010. New Lotus Evoras will start at $73,500 for the four seater Lotus. The piston pumper is a 3.5 Liter unit sourced from Toyota that makes an adequate 276 HP and 258 lb-ft of thrust. Aside from the brand new lines, owners will enjoy going from 0 to 60 MPH in 4.9 seconds and hitting a top speed of 162 MPH while getting a very green 30+ miles per gallon while doing it. Judging from what we saw at the Miami Auto Show they will also look very good while doing it.

Equipment list and prices after the jump.

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Lotus at the 2009 South Florida International Auto Show

Lotus at the 2009 South Florida International Auto Show

The lightweight English sports car manufacturer Lotus had two very special models on display at the 2009 Miami Auto Show. Sitting front and center is the all new Evora model that combines a carbon fiber closed cockpit two seater configuration with a transversely mounted 3.5 Liter Toyota VVT-i V6 that makes about 270 HP and is more than enough to give the new Lotus plenty of get up and go accelerating from 0 to 60 MPH in under 5 seconds. The other Lotus in the Collection’s booth is of the open air variety, the 60th anniversary Elise model comes complete with a pair of stripes running down the middle that match the color accented interior complete with 60th Anniversary embroidery.

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2010 Lotus Exige S240

2010 Lotus Exige S240

Back in 2008 the lightweight English sports car manufacturers from Lotus released a very fast version of their fixed roof Elise roadster, the Exige Sport 240. The special edition Exige offered owners a very street able sports car while on track the 240 was capable of some incredible things. For 2010, the Exige S240 has received a slightly restyled front end, a new rear wing and the same combination of exceptional performance and usability, all starting at $65,690.

The S240’s front bumper gets a larger set of air intakes in the front bumper as well as larger vents in the hood in order to flow more air across the sports car’s cooling elements like the twin oil coolers ahead of the front wheels. This reduces the operating temperature of the high revving Toyota sourced four cylinder engine and further enhances the engine’s efficiency. This aerodynamically improved small super car is exactly what you will need to be able to run lap after lap at your local racetrack whenever you decide to take your new toy out to stretch its legs.

Under the rear decklid of the mid engine Lotus Exige S240 is an intercooled and supercharged 1.8 Liter Toyota 2ZZ-GE with the automaker’s Variable Valve Timing with Inteligence and tuned by Lotus to produce a maximum output of 240 HP at a screaming 8,000 RPM and 170 lb-ft of torque from 5,500 RPM. Tipping the scales at just over 2,000 pounds, the Exige Sport 240 is able to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in a blistering 4.1 seconds and reach the 100 MPH mark just 10 seconds after takeoff. The S240 can reach a top speed of 150 MPH and thanks to the drag reducing front end is able to get an EPA estimated 20 MPG around town and as much as 26 MPG on the highway.

Press release after the jump.

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Lotus to offer Supercharger Kit for U.S. models

Lotus to offer Supercharger Kit for U.S. models

The American arm of the lightweight English sports car builder, Lotus USA, has announced that they will be offering a new Supercharger Kit for both naturally aspirated Lotus Elise and Exige models. The kit includes the same supercharger and cast intake manifold as the production Elise SC and allows owners who have decided that they rely did want that extra power after all by boosting their Toyota 2ZZ-GE engine.

The kit includes a new intake manifold, high-flow fuel injectors and a re-programmed engine management system that work together to increase the engine’s power up to 218 HP from the stock 189 HP rating. It may not seem like all that much, but the 2ZZ is tuned to work as efficiently as possible as it comes from the factory. The main advantage of the kit is much more power down low in the RPM band and because the supercharger is always spinning, instantaneous throttle response.

Press release after the jump.

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Lotus Evora: U.S. specs

Lotus Evora: U.S. specs

Although you may have forgotten about the newest 2+2 offering from the English sports car builder, the Lotus Evora, due to all the news about a V10 powered Esprit. Well here is something that might get you thinking about the model that we saw at the L.A. Auto Show last year, because we have gotten a hold of some specs about the upcoming Evora.

Always important with the English automaker is weight; the Lous Evora will weigh in at less than 1.5 tons at 3,046.8 pounds. The 2+2 will be powered by a Toyota-sourced 3.5 Liter V6 making 276 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque when it hits showrooms later this year. The mid engine layout will not only help with handling, but will allow the 2009 Evora to sprint from 0 to 60 MPH in just 4.9 seconds and hit a top speed of 162 MPH. However, power is nothing without control, so careful attention to the vehicle’s braking means that the Evora will be able to grind to a halt from 60 MPH in just 110.2 feet.

The Evora will not only use its lightness for performance, the attribute will allow the next Lotus to be efficient as well. The British engineers figure that the Evora will be good for 32.5 MPG, although they haven’t disclosed whether that is on the highway or combined, but either way, sub 5 second 0 to 60 MPH times, exotic styling and a mid-engine layout definitely make the Evora a sports car. Future sports cars will not only need to be fun to drive, but they will also have to be environmentally friendly while doing it.

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