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Lotus Shows First Big Look at Its 'New Era': The Elite

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On: Wed, Sep 22, 2010 at 9:44AM | By: Chris Weiss

Lotus Shows First Big Look at Its 'New Era': The Elite

Lotus has revealed its Elite 2 + 2 GT roadster concept that brings us the first example of the company's 'dawn of a new era.' A sexy, sporty two-door with plenty of power, the new concept gives a peek into what is sure to be an exciting future for Lotus sports cars.

It's been quite an exciting day for pre-Paris news. First, we read some credible information predicting that Lamborghini will be showing two brand-spanking-new super-vehicles, and now a look at the fetching Lotus Elite.

The Elite is powered by a front-mid supercharged 5.0-liter V8 engine from the Lexus IS-F. The engine will be connected to an epicyclic transmission with two electric motors and KERS. Final output is expected at 542 horsepower, but a 610-hp R variant is also expected.

Performance for the 610-hp Elite R will come in at 3.5 seconds to 62 mph, with a top speed around 195 mph.

In terms of styling, design director Donato Coco aimed to provide some more depth and dynamics over models like the Evora, Exige and Elise. This is most apparent in the aggressive, restyled front end. The concept model coming to Paris will feature a retractable hard-top, but a coupe and full convertible may also come down the line. Inside, Lotus says the car matches its "shark-like" exterior with an equally attractive, well-appointed interior.

Lotus CEO Dany Bahar, CEO gave his thoughts on the new model in a release: "There's no denying that the Elite is breathtakingly beautiful to look at but it's so much more than that, it's a car that over delivers in all other aspects as well. One could say it's a car of perfect contradictions, it's compact yet spacious, high performing yet low emitting, lightweight yet still reassuringly solid. It's a car that we are exceptionally proud of at Lotus and we truly believe that there is nothing else like it out there both in terms of styling and performance.

The Lotus Elite is being developed for a 2014 release. Pricing is being estimated at 115,000 pounds (about $180K). It's sure to bring Lotus back into the conversation with the Porsches, Ferraris, and Aston Martins out there. Look for more Lotus concepts in the days leading up to the Paris Motor Show.

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