Emira? What is that thing again?
Like the Elise, the Lotus Emira has been given a maiden name. It means something like ‘one worthy of being called a princess’. Anyway: the new sports coupé from Hethel in Northern England is a beauty in our opinion. He (or is it a ‘she’?) replaces both the veteran but still great Elise, and the always somewhat misunderstood Evora. For the time being, Lotus will only build the Emira as a closed coupé, but it would not surprise us at all that there will also be a version with a removable roof panel.
Would you like to explain one more time what makes Lotus so special?
First of all, it’s a miracle that the brand still exists! The estate of the genius engineer Colin Chapman has had countless owners. Lotus became champion in Formula 1 no fewer than seven times, but has been saved from destruction even more times. Currently, the Chinese concern Geely is a major shareholder of Lotus Cars – you know, the owner of Volvo, Polestar and Lynk & Co. Lotus does not only build lightning-fast sports cars, but is also regularly hired by other car groups to perfect the fine-tuning of future models.
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Lotus always built those lightweight sports cars, right?
That is absolutely correct. Colin Chapman thought it was nonsense to give a heavy car a shot of extra power for a higher top speed. Because all that weight eventually had to bend. That is why he aimed for the lowest possible weight. After Chapman passed away in 1982, this has always remained Lotus’ philosophy – the Elise, for example, weighed only 700 kilos. Over the years, however, more and more mass was added. Lotus buyers actually liked a bit of comfort and luxury. The legislation also stipulated that the safety equipment of the Elise also had to be completed.
And now the Emira. Is that still an old school Lotus?
Looking purely at the weight: no. The scale does not want to go below 1400 kilos. Lotus says that with the Emira an era ends – and a new era begins. Compared to the Elise, the Emira has become a lot bigger. The car has been developed with daily use in mind, if necessary as the only car. In other words: the critical buyer is not short of anything, and that brings extra kilos with it. Compared to the Porsche 718 Cayman, the Emira is slightly longer and wider.
What Lotus does continue to do is buy the engines. The Emira offers the choice of a two-liter four-cylinder with turbo, from the shelves of Mercedes-AMG. In addition, there is a 3.5-liter V6 with mechanical compressor, which is supplied by Toyota. Lotus has not yet disclosed the specs for both engine variants in detail, but the power levels will fluctuate between 360 and 400 hp. Good for a 100th sprint of less than 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 290 km/h. For such performance, you need at least the Cayman GTS 4.0 at Porsche!
Say, haven’t I actually seen the Lotus Emira before?
It is not at all strange that the Emira looks familiar to you. It looks exactly like the Evija, Lotus’ electric hypercar, which has a power of no less than 2000 hp. Like the Evija, the Emira has put a lot of time and energy into the aerodynamics of the body. Lotus did not want to mar the design with all kinds of bulging spoilers and wings. Lotus also does not use actively moving air guides. To generate the necessary downforce, the Emira has subtle cooling slots in the nose and – of course – an ingenious diffuser at the rear.
Okay, enough said! When can I test drive?
Just a little patience, please! The Lotus Emira will not go into production until 2022. We could be a year further before the first copies are delivered. Enough time to perfect the composition of your Emira with the configurator on Lotus’ website.