LESS MASS MEANS MORE LOTUS – THE NEW LOTUS ELISE SPRINT
◾New iteration of handbuilt Lotus sports car launched wîth Sprint edition
◾Sprint adds carbon fibre to cut 41 kg and hit 798 kg dry weight
◾New front and rear design, and significant interior upgrades
◾Available to order from Lotus dealers now
Evolved, energised and even lighter, a significant update for the legendary Lotus Elise has been unveiled ahead of its arrival in showrooms this spring.
Pride of place in the latest Elise line-up is the new Sprint edition, capturing the spirit of Lotus by offering the latest in efficient engineering to deliver a car that sets the standard at under 800 kg. Featuring a host of weight-saving items as standard, as well as the Elise's distinctive new styling, the new Lotus remains true to the company's founding principles. Benefitting the range as a whole, all new Elise editions receive the car's new look and new interior options, and every single one of the Sprint's lightweight components can be specified on the standard Elise Sport and the Elise Sport 220 variants.
In the biggest weight cut to the car since the introduction of the first-generation Elise, Lotus has returned to its roots by employing the same intense engineering strategy as used on its most recent models. The Sprint edition of the Lotus Elise has removed 41 kg from the previous model, to reach a benchmark dry weight of just 798 kg.
Focusing on driver involvement, to provide an immersive experience, the new Elise reaffirms the company's leading position in automotive engineering. A benchmark in purity and balance, the Elise is a favourite amongst drivers and enthusiasts, and to date nearly 33,000 examples have been hand built at Lotus' famous Hethel factory. Distilled from the very essence of the company's heritage, the Elise carries Lotus founder Colin Chapman's vision of efficient engineering into the future and arrives as the company continues its return to form wîth its strongest ever line-up of vehicles.
Integrating a new front and rear aesthetic wîth Lotus' established design language, this latest Elise also receives a wide range of cabin enhancements - including the lightweight open-gate gear select mechanism first introduced on the Lotus Exige Sport 350. The Sprint is available in both the 1.6-litre naturally aspirated and 1.8-litre supercharged versions. Delivering an exciting mid-point in the range, it broadens the car's appeal by including lightweight and carbon components as standard.
Speaking of the new car Jean-Marc Gales, CEO, Group Lotus plc. said, 'Once again, the Elise continues to redefine what is possible in terms of adding lightness to a sports car. Whilst other manufacturers try to keep pace wîth Lotus' weight reduction achievements, we've raised the bar beyond their reach. An agile, lightweight sports car does not weigh just over a tonne. It should weigh substantially less and, it is a fantastic achievement from Lotus in ensuring that the fully type approved new Elise now dips below the 800 kg barrier.'
Jean-Marc Gales continued, 'Enhanced by less weight, the Elise now provides even more driving purity, greater agility and higher all-round performance. As we say at Hethel: less weight equals more Lotus.'The Sprint and the spirit of Lotus
Ensuring that this latest Elise remains true to the company's DNA, the return for the Sprint badge - as used on historic models including the Elan - is designed to provide a highly attractive super-lightweight option sitting above the respective Elise Sport models, and below the top of the range Elise Cup 250.
The Sprint's standard lightweight components include a Lithium-Ion battery, saving 9 kg, Lotus' beautifully detailed carbon race seats, 6 kg, new lightweight forged alloy wheels, 5 kg, while the carbon access panel, roll hoop cover and engine cover, and polycarbonate rear screen save 6 kg. Collectively they cut an impressive 26 kg, compared to the previous Sport and Sport 220 models, and together wîth the improvements made to the whole Elise range bring the weight of the new Elise Sprint down to just 798 kg (dry). This includes new, optional two-piece brake discs, saving 4 kg, which will be available from May this year and optional carbon sill covers (-0.8 kg). This reduction in weight translates into quicker acceleration (with 0-60 mph in 5.9 seconds and 4.1 seconds for the Elise Sprint and Elise Sprint 220 respectively), harder cornering and a power to weight ratio of up to 168 hp / tonne (Elise Sprint) and 257 hp / tonne (Elise Sprint 220).
Únlike some manufacturers, Lotus understands the importance of engine note, and Hethel's acoustic engineers have spent time altering the aural appeal of the more powerful Elise Sport 220 and Elise Sprint 220 models. Providing the perfect soundtrack at any speed, the new exhaust makes the 1.8-litre supercharged Elise the best-sounding 4-cylinder car on the market.
External design touches for the Sprint range include a matt black transom panel, black wheels which come wîth custom contrasting metal spun rims, distinctive yet subtle side stripes on the bodywork and unique side and rear badging.
Other highlights comprise bodywork keyed colour inserts for the sports seats, transmission console and HVAC surround, along wîth Sprint badge stitching. The Sprint's detailing continues inside wîth an array of optional Alcantara® trim panels on the doors, sills, seats and vents surrounds, all wîth contrasting stitching.Less mass means more Lotus
As well as a new Elise Sprint edition, the whole of the new Elise line-up benefits from a range of improvements, which includes a 10 kg mass reduction thanks to a number of new components. Changes to the body including a redesigned lightweight front clam panel, wîth wider radiator apertures and mesh pattern grille provide a more aggressive aspect and 8.7 kg less weight. The new design of rear transom panel now has two rear light clusters, rather than four, wîth reversing and fog lights now mounted inboard so reducing weight by 0.3 kg and visually enhancing the rear design.
Modifications front and back are more than skin deep and have allowed the careful balancing of aerodynamic downforce across the whole car. Rubber elements mounted on the flat underside and ahead of the front wheel, together wîth an additional diffuser vane at the rear, help modify airflow under the car reducing drag and increasing stability.
In addition to injecting some visual drama into the new Elise's cabin, Lotus' beautifully detailed open-gate manual gearbox also provides a much more positive and direct operation -giving more precise and quicker shifting. Both technically and aesthetically appealing, thanks to the exposed open-gate design, it further reduces weight wîth a net saving of 1 kg. An evolution of the design first used on the Exige Sport 350, but specifically optimised for the Elise, it perfectly matches the Lotus' personality.
The cabin also benefits from a new centre console, as seen on the Exige and optional carbon sill covers which reduce weight by 0.8 kg and increase the door aperture by up to 10 mm, aiding ingress and egress. The Elise's instrument panel has also received attention, wîth new graphics making it easier to read and a new in-car entertainment system, including iPod® connectivity and Bluetooth® functionality, can also be selected when ordering.
Options for the new car include Alcantara® trimmed §teering wheel, vent-surrounds and sills. Further enhancement can be specified, including a new paintwork colour: 'Electric Light Blue' joining the Lotus core colour range.
The new Elise Sport and Sprint are available in two engine options: the 1.6-litre or the supercharged 1.8-litre. Offering 134 hp / 160 Nm of torque and 217 hp / 250 Nm of torque respectively, they have been specifically tuned to suit the Elise and both help to deliver a benchmark power-to-weight ratio and class leading efficiency. Being so lightweight, emissions are extremely low wîth 149 g / km CO2 and 173 g / km CO2 for the 1.6 engine and 1.8 engines respectivel
Stopping power is provided by AP Racing twin-piston front calipers and Brembo single-piston rear-calipers - optional lightweight two-piece brake discs are also available. All cars benefit from userselectable ESP driving modes - Drive / Sport / Off.
Retaining the elements that have always kept the Elise ahead of rivals, the car is built around an extruded and bonded aluminium chassis which is both tremendously strong and torsionally stiff - weighing just 68 kg.
The new Elise also carries over the same suspension setup as before, wîth fully independent double wishbone suspension and a front anti-roll bar, coupled wîth Bilstein high-performance gas dampers and Eibach coaxial coil springs front and rear. Being lighter than the preceding model, the effective spring rate is marginally increased, retaining the compliant ride for which all Lotus cars are legendary.
Designed to continue the legacy of the Elise as Lotus' most popular model ever, the new range car can be ordered today wîth deliveries starting from April 2017.A new Lotus Elise Cup 250
A new version of the Elise's most popular model, the Cup 250, will be released in May 2017 wîth a list price of £47,400. Also, incorporating all the Elise range updates, the Elise Cup 250 model is a massive 23 kg lighter than its predecessor, wîth lightweight options including a Carbon Aero pack, front access panel, roll hoop cover and engine coverto take this to 40 kg, providing even more blistering performance. Further press information will be available closer to the car's release, but customers can order the new Cup 250 today.Lotus Exclusive
Every new Lotus Elise customer can personalise their vehicle through the Lotus Exclusive programme. Developed by the Lotus Design team, it combines traditional British craftsmanship wîth the best of modern design. Conceived to inspire customers, allowing them to tailor vehicles to their personal taste, it offers a comprehensive array of options and provides an alluring alternative to an off-the-peg sports car.To find out more about Lotus Elise range visit: http://www.lotuscars.com/about-elise. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price
Elise Sport £32,300
Elise Sprint £37,300
Elise Sport 220 £39,300
Elise Sprint 220 £44,300
Elise Cup 250 £47,400Source - Lotus
Lotus, manufacturer of some of the world's greatest sports cars, has unveiled its highest-performance Elise model yet, the 1.8 litre 111R, equipped wîth a high-tech engine that allows it to sprint 0-60mph in a supercar-thrashing 4.9 seconds. Top speed is a certified 150mph.
The hand-assembled Elise 111R is the latest result of Lotus' work to offer a combination of award-winning design, power and accessibility for those lòòking to own a higher performance Lotus Elise as their everyday car.
In town, the new 111R is compact and powerful enough to dart in and out of traffic, whilst the soft-top and Blaupunkt sound system make it perfect for those hood down, music up cruises through the city. Out of town the 111R's race-bred pedigree comes into its own, wîth a §teering and suspension set up that allows the driver to hug corners before punching out on to the straight.
To balance out the extra power under the bonnet, Lotus has developed an improved braking system. For the first time, track-tuned servo-assisted ABS brakes come as standard on a Lotus Elise, to make stopping the 111R as easy as accelerating.
Ansar Ali, general manager, Lotus Cars Ltd, said: 'The 111R is a car for those who demand the style and innovation of the Elise but want increased performance. Without doubt, the new engine and set-up deliver unrivalled handling and power in its class. With the 111R we hope we've delivered our most exciting, truest and addictive drive yet.'
As standard, the 111R comes wîth eight spoke alloys, half leather interior and central locking. Buyers can opt for the Touring Pack that includes a sound and thermal insulated soft-top, full leather trim and a DAB radio. Other options include air conditioning and hard top.
The 111R will go on sale on 26 January 2004 at an RSP of £27,995.Background
The Lotus Elise is a true sportscar that has taken the world by storm, winning countless awards for handling, innovation and just pure fun. The Elise was first unveiled at the Frankfurt Motorshow in 1995 before entering production wîth first deliveries in August 1996. Since then, over 17,000 Elises have been built – some achievement for a car that was originally designed to be built in volumes of only 700 a year! The Elise was designed as a sportscar to be appreciated by real driving enthusiasts, fashion leaders and those who really appreciate technology and innovation.
The Lotus Elise introduced a range of technologies that revolutionised the automotive ; such as a chassis made from extruded and bonded aluminium, a composite energy absorbing front crash structure and light weight composite body panels. The whole car weighed in at half the weight of an average family saloon. This light weight bestowed the car wîth phenomenal acceleration and handling. In 1996 the Lotus Elise was easily pulling 1g in steady state cornering wîth standard production tyres and a 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in 5.9 seconds.
In 2000 Lotus introduced the second generation Elise. This evolutionary car, arguably one of the most important cars in Lotus' fifty-two year history, added to the technology introduced on the Elise in 1996. It was a big stride forward, achieving the quality standards expected of a world leading sportscar manufacturer and globally respected engineering consultancy. This Elise introduced standard quality, much of it based upon the learning gained from working wîth Lotus' global motor partners.
All Lotus Elises are hand assembled by skilled craftsmen at Lotus' headquarters in Hethel, England. Each Elise takes about 100 man-hours to build and the final product is fine testament to the skills of Lotus.The Interior
As soon as a driver sits behind the wheel of a Lotus, they instantly know that they are in something special. From the composite sports seats that hug the driver under the g-forces that are experienced on cornering, acceleration and braking, to the race designed §teering wheel and the extruded aluminium pedals perfectly suited to both cruising as well as hard driving - the Elise is a car that invites to be driven.
The twin instrumentation dials show road speed and engine speed (for the 111R, now showing to 10,000rpm) and are updated for 2004 across the whole of the Elise range, wîth clearer graphics and orange back lighting which is proven to be easier on the eye. Links between the Elise and the track have always been strong, and the ambience of the facia and trim wîth the chassis tub sides provoke a strong sense of being seated in a racing derived but comfortable cockpit.
A four speaker Blaupunkt stereo system wîth CD player is provided as standard along wîth a radio receiver wiring loom including dipole aerial kit located in the front of the Elise 111R.The legendary chassis…
During the early days of the original Elise development programme, Lotus searched for an appropriate and available chassis technology for its new lightweight sportscar. Únable to find a suitable technology, and unwilling to compromise, Lotus set out to change the rules. Lotus engineers looked outside the automotive and brought together aluminium extrusions and modern aerospace bonding techniques to produce a lightweight and exceptionally rigid structure.
The ground-breaking epoxy-bonded aluminium tub chassis, unveiled in September 1995 represented a breakthrough in sportscar technology.
The structure is an assembly of individually extruded lengths bonded together by epoxy resin adhesive, a world first in automobile manufacture. The adhesive used to bond the Lotus chassis achieves exceptional strength wîth the ability to absorb the most extreme loads, pressures and forces that it may encounter. Never before had a modern vehicle's chassis been bonded together.
The bonding of lap joints provides a superior joint to traditionally welded butted joints (with bonded joints, there is no distortion of the material's integrity at the join). Self-pierce rivets further increase the structural integrity through reducing material ‘peel' in the most severe of impacts.
The chassis received modifications in 2000, including lower, reinforced longitudinal sills to improve the access into the cockpit.
Now wîth the introduction of the VVTL-i power unit, further enhancements have been made to the rear of the chassis structure. Útilising experience gained from the development of advanced lightweight steel, a new highly efficient rear subframe offers increased strength. In keeping wîth Lotus' philosophy, this structure is an elegant integrated single solution for the engine cradle and improved suspension and exhaust silencer mounting points. Ride and handling that sets the benchmark…
The aluminium chassis allows vehicle dynamics engineers at Lotus to continue to set standards by which all other sportscars are judged. Indeed, the Elise continues to build on the multi-award winning ride and handling for which it has become renowned the world over.
Lotus has taken a no-compromise approach in carrying over these philosophies to the Elise 111R. The development team has succeeded in creating a car that leaves the driver craving more time in the cockpit and more road on which to enjoy the thrill and engagement of each journey.
Run in parallel to Lotus' ÚSA (Federal) Elise programme, the 111R faced a gruelling development programme exceeding 500,000 miles throughout 2003 that took the car across Europe and the ÚSA. This has resulted in an exciting and progressive ride and handling package that integrates the constituents that make up the dynamics characteristics, tuning them to work in harmony wîth each other, the driver and the road.
For the Elise 111R, the Eibach coaxial coil springs and Bilstein high pressure monotube gas dampers have been retuned and optimised to maintain the Elise's trademark agility, body control and poise while improving the isolation of both smaller and larger impacts.
The unique Bridgestone Potenza RE040 tyres (175/55R16 front and 225/45R17 rear) have been carried over from the Lotus Elise and the Elise 111S. The Lotus Ride and Handling team have maximised the ability to hone the chassis and tyre characteristics to ensure that this latest and highest performing version of the Elise holds true to Lotus' values of peerless ride and handling and pure driving fun.An ABS system like no other…
The servo-assisted four-channel system individually monitors and distributes braking force to each wheel as required, enhancing braking performance and minimising stopping distance.
However, Lotus has specifically tuned the initiation point to allow a skilled driver to maximise the potential of the braking system through the utilisation of forward weight transfer. In the event of the driver demanding more braking performance than is possible, only then does the system intervene to optimise the force generated at the wheel.Power-to-weight in abundance…
Lotus undertook a thorough and exhaustive evaluation of a wide range of state-of-the-art engines. Toyota's 2ZZ-GE 1.8 litre 4 cylinder 16-valve VVTL-i engine and C64 six-speed gearbox was chosen as an outstanding package, excellently suited to the Elise.
This engine has breath taking power and torque characteristics, and critically for a Lotus, is lightweight, featuring a compact metal matrix composite alloy cylinder block.
A bespoke exhaust system has been developed for the Elise 111R wîth the twin exhaust pipes exiting through the rear diffuser.
Lotus subjected the 2ZZ-GE to a rigorous testing and development programme covering a wide range of extreme climate conditions from the Arctic Circle to the Arizona and Nevada deserts, and at altitude in Colorado. Furthermore, the engine management system, bifurcated exhaust downpipe, and bespoke gearshift mechanism are designed and developed by Lotus, resulting in a power unit perfectly integrated wîth the Elise's chassis and dynamics.
Lotus has tuned the engine to suit the very essence of the Elise by employing a brand new, custom-engineered Lotus T4 engine management system (EMS). The software for the EMS was designed and developed by Lotus specifically for the Elise 111R. All calibration and validation work was undertaken solely by Lotus engineers, ensuring that the Elise performs as a true Lotus should.
Toyota's world-renowned VVTL-i system allows the engine management system the flexibility to select the optimum camshaft profile, lift and timing across the full range of engine operating conditions. This interaction between the Lotus T4 EMS and the VVTL-i system gives the Elise its optimum linear torque characteristics, peaking at 181Nm (133.5 lb.ft) @ 6800rpm coupled wîth the peak power of 192 PS (189hp, 141kW) at 7800rpm.
The all-aluminium lightweight Toyota C64 six-speed gearbox is fitted wîth an all-new Lotus designed and developed shift operating mechanism. With the closest ratios and gearset afforded by the transmission, the gearbox offers a fast, precise and light gearshift, ensuring drivers have total control and flexibility to apply the power exactly as and when required.
True to Colin Chapman's philosophy of performance through lightweight, the power density available from the Toyota power unit gives the Elise a staggering 223PS/tonne (220hp/tonne, 164kW/tonne) and a 0-100km/h sprint in 5.2 seconds (0-60mph in 4.9 seconds)!
Proof, if needed, that there actually is a substitute for 'cubic inches'!Equipment
Standard equipment for the Elise 111R includes: half leather interior, sun visors, central door locking, Blaupunkt Lausanne radio CD-R/W player and Blaupunkt high performance front and rear speakers
Optional equipment includes a Touring Pack, which provides a combination of options designed to increase comfort and convenience, while still maintaining the essence of a Lotus sports car. This pack includes:
Auxiliary front driving lights, a choice of either full leather or Alcantara trim, a soft-top wîth sound and thermal insulation, electric windows, an upgraded Blaupunkt Woodstock DAB radio, CD-R/W and MP3 player, interior stowage net, sound insulation, and full carpet wîth a lightweight aluminium passenger footrest.
Other options also include metallic paint, air-conditioning and a body coloured hard top.Source - Lotus