• Jul 29, 2008
Lotus' limited resources were apparently tapped out by the fast-tracking of the new Evora, so the Esprit replacement has been delayed until 2011. According to Autocar, the new Esprit will be based off the same chassis as the Evora, but it will be widened and stretched to fit a longitudinal engine mounted amidships. But what kind of engine? Lotus boss Mike Kimberley says that he wants to offer "guilt-free, high performance motoring" and Autocar maintains that to reach that goal, the new Esprit could be fitted with a hybrid drivetrain based on a mix of Lotus and Toyota technology.
Lotus has its hands full with several other projects, including six different versions of the Evora -- ranging from a convertible to an automatic variant -- as well as developing S3 versions of the Elise and Exige and working on 340 different projects for 147 separate companies. For the first time in several years, Lotus posted a profit, and if the automaker continues its trajectory, more money and compelling products are on the way.


[Source: Autocar]


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  • 13 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      Hmmmm... Lotus, Toyota, high performance and hybrid.

      Thr 438-hp hybrid powerplant from the LSh seems to make the most sense. But you also have the 340-hp hybrid V-6 from the GSh. I am leaning towards the former.

      So given that the Evora weighs as much as a Cayman, this Espirit with the hybrig powertrain will weigh as much as, a 911 turbo? GT-R? Either way, not really the lightweight supercar that a lot of people expected.

      • 6 Years Ago
      If they're turning a profit, they obviously know more about their market than me. But, it looks like Lotus is moving toward heavier, more convential high-end sports cars - definitely not in keeping with their existing brand image. Hopefully they can at least maintain dual personalities and continue to develop the Elise/Exige line in keeping with expectations.

      The Evora is heavy at roughly 3000 lbs., and the Esprit will undoubtedly be heavier when the chassis is widened and lengthened, not to mention the possible hybrid engine (or at least probably a larger engine). At that point, we'll have just another of the dozens of 3500 lb. sports cars on the market. Won't it be sad when Nissan, Mazda, etc. start shaving weight off their models as planned, and Lotus becomes the fat kid on the block?
      • 6 Years Ago
      2011? Chevy bought them? Sorry, that was too easy, someone had to do it, might as well be me.
      • 6 Years Ago
      VW has had success with its 1.4 twin-charger 4 cyl: 170hp, and 32mpg from 1.4 liters ain't too shabby. Maybe they should be looking at this route instead.

      I'm sure Toyota could develop their own version for a 3.0l V6 or even a 2.8L V8. For those who think 2.8L is too small, remember the Ferrari 288 GTO. 400hp, and 366lbs ft... without modern computers, direct injection or other advancements that would improve economy.

      • 6 Years Ago
      Please no hybrid Lotus? I love hybrids to pieces, but a Lotus burdened with more than a few kilos of batteries and a drivetrain that makes the Space Shuttle look simple would easily put the Lotus above 1500kg.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm afraid that's too long, Lotus. The elise platform and its variants are becoming long in the tooth. The Europa fooled no one. I'm sure the Evora will meet the same fate.
      Lotus is pushing itself into greater irrelevance by their own stinginess.
      As the internet savants would say, "FAIL".
        • 6 Years Ago
        @Lee Gibson: I don't know about the chassis, but when it comes to the whole package, the Lotus Elise came in 5th place in a field of 6. I didn't expect it to beat the GT-R, but I didn't expect it to lose to the Evo X either.

        Source:
        http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Features/articleId=126453
        • 6 Years Ago
        "As the idiot savants would say, "FAIL"."

        Fixed it for you.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "It is just folded aluminum, inexpensive extrusions, fiberglass, rivets and glue. "

        Spoken like somebody who's never had to buy tooling for an industrial application.

        I wish I could have a car company as "irrelevant" as Lotus.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "long in the tooth"? What chassis outperforms the Elise?

        Hell, the Lotus Seven will still blow the doors off of a lot of cars, and it's, what? Fifty years old?
      • 6 Years Ago
      George, "The elise does not even meet US crash standards. The car was issued a waiver by the US gov't due to Lotus' "financial difficulties".

      George, the Elise met US crash standards from day one of US sales. The exemption was for non sealed headlights and bumpers that didn't meet the 2.5mph test. 2007 models onward no longer have those exemptions.

      When Lotus engineers performed the crash tests for the US government, US gov't engineers were stunned when the Lotus engineers drove the car away from the crash test area.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So they are developing a new supercar?

      Thats good, because i was wondering were the Evora fitted in the scheme of things
      • 6 Years Ago
      It seems Lotus is on the right track and will have a successful future.
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