It’s not even hit showrooms in the UK yet (except for a brief stint at Lotus Park Lane) but it is becoming clear that Lotus has every intention of using the new Evora to spawn further models (it’s managed to get at least a decade out of the Elise and its siblings).
Top of the list, at least in terms of sports car interest, is a blown version of the Evora. Apparently, Lotus was clever enough to build enough space in the Evora’s engine bay to accommodate a supercharger between the cylinder banks without the need for any re-jigging. That means we will see an Evora SC, probably in late 2010, with a nice boost in power to 350bhp, which should drop the 0-60 by about a second and put the top speed up to around 175mph.
But sooner than the Evora SC, we will see a first from Lotus for a long time – an auto ‘box. They’ve done it before, and frankly it is probably a must for our American friends, who seem to have a problem engaging their left foot when driving. But if the ‘box is good ( as in Porsche PDK or Ferrari F1) then it won’t be as appalling as it sounds, but at this price it’s much more likely to be a slush-box. We’ll have to wait and see.
Finally on the list is a roadster. And Lotus claim it will have a folding tin-top. But where on earth they are going to find the room to stow such a thing in a 2+2 mid-engined car is beyond me. Sounds like they’ll need a bit of TARDIS technology for that.
As a still profitable car company (a real rarity for car makers today) Lotus has a very cost-efficient business model with the way in which they develop and grow a single car in to a whole range. Good on them.