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.


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  • 17 Comments
      ELG
      • 2 Years Ago
      The exige never had a fixed roof. :) Installing the softtop supports and using the elise softtop is a popular mod. (i did it myself on mine)
      kaneda
      • 2 Years Ago
      Lotus continues to baffle me. I would LOVE to own a Lotus, but the company makes it impossible for me to do so. For starters, we can't even get this car over here. If it were available, it would be around 80K. Ever stand next to a Lotus Exige/Elise? They are TINY cars and because of this (and the fact that the materials/quality of build are sub-par) there is no way they are worth a penny over 50k. I also agree that Lotus appeals to the track day warrior...this new Exige looks like they are trying to create a Porsche-like interior. But Lotus buyers don't want more leather and weight, they want them lighter and faster. Also, buying a Lotus new is a waste of money. So many used models are available with less than 5,000 miles. Why? Because people buy them, realize how hard they are to get in and out of and how impractical they are, and they dump them. I just wish Lotus would offer a competitive car at a competitive price. That wish will never come true.
      zanarditypes
      • 2 Years Ago
      What's up with the ridiculously lumpy steering wheel?
        Elmo
        • 2 Years Ago
        @zanarditypes
        It's a racing style steering wheel...
      ERNSTEVERYTHING
      • 2 Years Ago
      oh dear.. looks like the exige has been putting on the pounds.. what is it supposed to be ..? I don't get it..? a boxster/ cayman rival..? what happened, to the less is more approach..? Lotus, done this before, you're falling into the same marketing nonsense again.. trying to make the brand more luxurious for the US... Look at the Evora's limited sell through.. ! I give up.. the blind leading the blind.. fools.. I'll stick to my caterham..
        imag
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ERNSTEVERYTHING
        They frickin *tried* the less is less approach. No one bought them. No one bought the 260 Cup, which weighed under 2000 lbs. Heaven's sake. Now Lotus have a car that weighs 500 lbs. *less* than a GT3 and everyone is giving them hell about it. It's such BS. If any other car company brought this out, you'd be incredibly impressed. The way I see it, we *need* more sports cars under 3000 lbs., and this is well under that mark. I swear, there is just no pleasing people. If you actually have a Caterham, good on you. Most people just whine about Lotus weight and then go next door to drool on the Porsches or Ferraris that weigh a quarter of a ton more.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Elmo
      • 2 Years Ago
      Um I thought the Exige S was supposed to be the stripped out track monster. The interior in this looks far from being stripped out. Where's the strap that was referred to as a cup holder? Automatic windows and chrome door handles?
        ELG
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Elmo
        auto windows are actually lighter than windups
          Elmo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @ELG
          Yeah, but didn't the previous Exige have a strap attached to the window instead of either an automatic or windup?
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Michael Meta
      • 2 Years Ago
      The Exige, or at least the last generation Exige, actually DID have a removable roof, it was just highly recommended to NOT take it off. This didn't stop some guys I was at a track meet with a few years ago, though...
        Michael Meta
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Michael Meta
        Forgot to add, it bolted on the same way as the Elise hardtop. I don't know if this has changed on the new models though, haven't sat in one.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Christopher
      • 2 Years Ago
      From the initial pic I was ready to dismiss it and say, time to ring in the new designs, however this is kinda hot.
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