Lotus has built its reputation on producing lightweight, fast, and stunning performance vehicles in recent history. The new Lotus Elite adds to that narrative. Unveiled just ahead of the Paris Auto Show, the Lotus Elite is a look into the future of the car company.
Packing a 612-horsepower 5.0-liter V-8 under the hood, the Lotus Elite can rocket from 0 to 60 in just 3.5 seconds. The engine also produces a very respectable 531 pound-feet of torque. This is a bit more power than the four-cylinders found in the Lotus Elise and Lotus Exige models currently offered.
But is it too much?
More power always equates into more dollar signs and the Lotus Elite is no different. Pricing is expected to be around $180,000, costing well more than the current models.
It appears the Lotus Elite is going to be all about surprises.
First up, the Elite will offer a retractable hardtop roof, adding significant weight to the automobile. It may weigh in at 3,600 pounds. This is a far step from Lotus’ usual super-light vehicles mentality. The Elite has a 2+2 seating configuration and is directly aimed at the competing with the Ferrari 612.
Lotus appears to have carefully planned this new model.
Lotus CEO Dany Bahar said, “Make no mistake, there’s a definite market requirement for the Elite. It’s the ultimate sports car feel with comfort and space. There will always be those who believe that Lotus should stick to small sports cars but we didn’t take the decision to design something like the Elite lightly, it’s based on months of careful research and planning. It’s worth noting this sector has been very successful for us in the past and now the Elite raises the benchmark higher still.”
Lotus has even hinted at a possible hybrid system being available, but you will have to wait though to get your hands on the Lotus Elite. It is expect for sale sometime in 2014.