With ten days ahead of the official unveiling at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, Lotus finally revealed us their big surprise, the so-called Esprit successor: behold the Elite! Set to redefine “modern classic", we have to admit that the car looks impressive, showing a compact yet chic body but also incorporating the latest technologies.
Although there are no photos showing it, this car will have a version with a slick retractable hard top, and what is more interesting is that the buyers can choose the optional use of hybrid technology with KERS technology borrowed from the F1.
The bad news is that the car is set to hit the dealerships in spring 2014, but honestly to tell you we’d wait this even for 6 years. Under the hood, we find a front-mid positioned 5.0-liter V8 engine delivering up to 620 PS (611 hp) and 720 Nm of torque, which means that the car can hit 100 km/h (62 mph) in approximately 3.5 to 3.7 seconds and has a top speed of 315 km/h or 195 mph.
The 2+2 seater is rear-wheel drive and its engine is mated to a hybrid gearbox. Regarding its price, according to Lexus, it will cost around £115,000 ($179,433 or €136,990).
Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar shared that it can no longer be denied that while the Elite is truly beautiful to look at, there is more to it than appearance. Over-all, it is a car that is capable of delivering in other aspects. It is a car that embodies perfect contradiction, Bahar adds.
Bahar cites a few examples like how it is a compact vehicle yet offers a lot of space. While it has low emissions, performance remains high. Finally, the Elite is solid but remains lightweight. Bahar related that the company is proud of the Elite and believes that it is indeed incomparable when it comes to performance and style.
Bahar said that there is a sure market for this model as it provides the best sports car feel in terms of space and comfort. Some critics have said that Lotus should just focus on small sports cars. Bahar argued that when the company designed the Elite, it was as result of months of research and planning.
This particular sector has been successful for its Lotues and the introduction of the Elite merely pushes up the standard, Bahar concludes.