Click above to view high-res image gallery of the Lotus Evora

We're apparently not the only ones in love with the Lotus formula, as celebrities are reportedly falling all over each other to get on the list for an Evora. We had a blissful visit with an Exige recently, but our main gripe was that we could only share the joy with one other person. When you've got a car that's such a delight, you want to pack the whole family in it, car seats and all. We're not sure if the 2+2 Evora will have LATCH anchors in the back seats, but that wouldn't stop us from trying to sign up for the upcoming four-place Lotus were we able to swing the payments. We'd be in good company, automotive celebrities Richard Hammond and James May are on "the list," along with TWO James Bonds. We wonder if the Evoras destined for Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig have been fitted with Q-approved submarine conversions, but even if they can't go swimming, it's clear that the Evora is the "it" car of the moment for a sizable list of celebrities, no Autoblog scribes included.

[Source: Lotus]

Craig, Clooney and Grohl on the waiting list for the new Lotus EVORA

The new Lotus Evora is everything a sports car should be; sculptural, stylish and fast; considerably faster than the famous Elise and more refined at speed than the track-focused Exige. Lotus promises its trademark exemplar performance credentials and suggests the Evora will achieve a maximum speed of 160 mph and a 0-60 time at less than 5 seconds!

High-end cars have long been integral to the one-upmanship among the glitterati, but rather than the traditional Bentleys and Bugattis, the A-lister must-have vehicles of the moment are small, environmentally friendly (225 grams of CO2 per kilometre) cars and must include seats for the children. But above all, an it-car must be exclusive, and nothing conveys extreme exclusivity better than the British, hand-built Lotus of which less than 2000 will be made a year for international distribution.

The versatility of the Evora has attracted a varied following, from speed seekers such as Jodie Kidd and Maxi Jazz, to those with an eye for style including Jennifer Lopez and Kelly Rowland.

Celebrity enthusiasts Patrick Dempsey and Jay Leno also made sure they too were first on the list for a test drive, followed closely by J-Lo and her husband Marc Anthony who are already huge Lotus fans and owners of a Lotus Elise. The celebrity couple enjoy the unrivalled driving experience of a Lotus, but are looking for more space for the children. The same goes for Gavin Henson and Charlotte Church, who are keen to have a car that accommodates their young family yet maintains a luxurious, yet sporty persona.

Mike Kimberley, CEO of Group Lotus plc, had this to say about the new model: "The Evora is the biggest milestone for Lotus since the Elise was born 13 years ago. We are currently working at broadening the appeal of the Lotus brand through an aggressive 5-year model plan of which this car represents the first exciting step."

Keeping with the Lotus tradition, the price tag is not out of reach for those who cannot be found on the internets 'movie database'. The Lotus Evora enters the sports car market at less than £50,000 making this car a real value proposition for those who like to work and play hard! This hand-built phenomenon will be available in early 2009.

The Lotus EVORA is the first of three new cars to be included in the new five year business plan. Celebrity fans waiting to drive the car include:

• Amanda Stretton – Driver and new face of F1
• Beyonce – International singer and actress (Destiny's Child)
• Boris Johnson – Mayor of London
• Daniel Craig – Actor
• Dave Grohl – Musician (Foo Fighters)
• Gavin Henson & Charlotte Church Welsh Rugby International/Singer, child prodigy, TV personality
• Gemma Arterton - Actress
• George Clooney - Actor
• James Martin – Celebrity chef, Daily Mail's Motoring reporter
• James May – TV personality and presenter of 'Top Gear'
• Jay Kay – Musician and Singer (Jamiroquai)
Jay Leno – TV personality and car enthusiast
• Jodie Kidd – Model,,TV personality and car enthusiast
• Jenifer Lopez and Marc Anthony – International singer and actress/International singer
• Kevin Spacey - Actor
• Mark Ronson – Musician and producer
• Maxi Jazz – Musician and car enthusiast (Faithless)
• Patrick Dempsey – Actor and car enthusiast
• Peter Andre - Singer
• Pierce Brosnan - Actor
• Richard Hammond - TV personality and presenter of 'Top Gear

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