The Sprint makes a comeback and is more featherweight than ever. Well, that’s because the Norfolk engineers apparently have thought of a better idea. Due to its relentless desire to lose more weight, the new Lotus Elise Sprint had taken massive amounts of carbon fiber diet.
Shedding at least ninety pounds (or equivalent to 41 kilograms), the Sprint turned out to be the most impressive of the three Elise line-up---- with a total dry weight of only 1,759 pounds. That’s 798 kilograms to be exact. Very light indeed.
To achieve this 41kg weight loss, the new Elise Sprint has undergone quite a serious makeover. Case in point; the sports car now comes with a new lithium ion battery that weighs 9kg lighter. Also, there is the new set of lightweight forged alloy wheels weighing 5kg less. To save as much as 6kg at once, the rear screen is made with polycarbonate material while the door panels, hood, roll hoop cover and seats are all made with carbon fiber.
Living up to the Sprint’s historic legacy, the front and rear fascia of the new roadster have been slightly modified as well--- not only to give it a completely new look but also to enhance its aerodynamics. Offering further weight loss is the optionally available carbon fiber sill cover that promises to cut down as much as 1.7 pounds. The Exige-style center console meanwhile is among its latest features while the newly designed open-gate manual gearbox offers a 1kg additional weight reduction.
Interested buyers can avail the new Lotus Elise Sprint either in 217hp 1.8-liter supercharged engine or the 134hp 1.6-liter naturally aspirated engine. The supercharger manages to go from 0-60 miles per hour under 4.1 seconds while the smaller engine accelerates from zero to 60mph in 5.9 seconds. According to Lotus, the supercharged Elise Sprint comes with the new exhaust system, making it the “best sounding” four-cylinder model in the industry. That we have to wait and see.
Other than launching the new Sprint edition model, Lotus has also updated other members of the Elise family. Both Lotus Elise Cup 250 and Sport range have also shaved off some weight. Aside from weighing 10kg lighter, the two other model ranges received some fresh new styling tweaks including the newly updated cabin design.
In the UK, the Elise Sport can be had for £32,300 while the Elise Cup 250 can be bought at a starting price of £47,400. Since the newly launched Sprint edition stands between the two model ranges, the naturally aspirated variant comes with a starting price of £37,300 while the supercharged Sprint is priced at £44,300.