Lotus Exige S Convertible

With the Elise slowly shuffling off this mortal coil, Lotus needs another slinky soft-top to fill out its lineup. In the run-up to the Geneva Motor Show, we assumed that would be a convertible version of the Evora, but we were wrong. This is the Lotus Exige S Convertible, which begs the question: What took 'em so long?

The only thing that separates the two models is ripping off the fixed roof on the Exige and replacing it with a removable cloth top or optional hard top. The same supercharged 3.5-liter V6 is mounted amidships, outputting 345 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Mated to the standard six-speed manual, 60 miles per hour comes and goes in 3.8 seconds, but Lotus will also offer the Roadster with its new Serial Precision Shift (SPS) automated manual gearbox, complete with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.

Sales are expected to begin throughout Europe later this year, but with the Elise and Exige twins already gone from the U.S., don't look for the Roadster to hit Stateside Lotus dealers anytime soon.