A few years ago, Lotus tried to take on Porsche. They had a five-car plan to go against competitors like Ferrari and Aston Martin. Though it did not go well, Lotus is still around anyway. After releasing the Elise Cup 250, the Elise Sprint and the Elise Sport 220, Lotus has something newer and more unique.
Lotus has been releasing a number of special edition models. And one of their newest projects would be the ultra-exclusive Elise Cup 260. The automaker will only build 30 examples of this in the world. It is a race-inspired car that was made with fancy aerodynamics to give the car extra downforce - that is 396 pounds (180 kilograms) at 151 miles per hour (243 kilometers per hour).
To keep its weight down, Lotus built the car with a number of carbon fiber parts throughout its body. In fact, even the seats were made of lightweight material, while the engine battery has also been given a lightweight lithium-ion unit.
Unlike the Elise Cup 250, this model has been equipped with a racing chassis developed by Lotus’ motorsport division. The engine, a supercharged 1.8 liter unit, has been tweaked with new air intakes and has been calibrated so that it could produce 250 horsepower (186 kilowatts) and 188 pound-feet (254 Newton-metres) of torque. The car weighs in at 1,988 pounds (902 kilograms) which is quite an impressive number.
The tweaked 1.8 liter engine works with a six-speed manual gearbox. In just 4.2 seconds, it can sprint from 0 to 62 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour). The 260 rides on 16-inch front wheels and 17-inch forged alloy wheels at the rear. These tires are wrapped in tires that are 10 millimeters wider than that of the previous 250 model for extra grip.
In the cabin, there are a number of Alcantara and carbon fiber touches, and there is also an open-gated shifter that’s not what people are used to seeing.
At £59,500 ($78,460), you could get the standard Elise Cup on the road. This comes with a puncture repair kit. If customers would like to modify this, there are more options such as titanium exhaust for reduced weight (15 kilograms less) that costs £4,000 ($5,275). Air conditioning will cost another £1,250 ($1,650), mud flaps for £150 ($200), and sound insulation for £350 ($460).
It has been almost 70 years since Colin Chapman started his engineering legacy, and Lotus CEO Jean Marc Gales thinks that it is just right that they build the best cars as special editions - and the Elise Cup 260 is definitely one of those.