Lotus Sports Cars Will Continue Production In UK But SUV Could Be Built Elsewhere

Lotus boss Jean-Marc Gales says that production of the sports car models will stay put in Norfolk, UK but a future crossover model could end being built outside their home country.

Since getting acquired by Geely, Lotus has finally the means to develop a new generation of models with the first one to hit the market by 2021.

The new range of Lotus models includes an SUV which, according to Gales, can find a new niche in the market.

“We will always have sports cars, but we’re looking at other segments,” he said to Autocar. “The SUV market changes as well – it’s not just cars that are six feet high and wide now, it’s a huge market that’s becoming more segmented. There is a niche within that for a Lotus crossover that is light and aerodynamic and handles like nothing else. We’re working on it. The new board needs to pass it, but the future is very bright.”

Gales also said that Lotus will keep making sports cars at its Norfolk facility in the UK but other models could be developed or made elsewhere. “We stay in the UK for sports cars, what we do for other cars needs defining,” he said.

The Lotus boss wants to launch the next-generation of the Elise, Exige and Evora models on a common platform, targeting a market launch from 2021.

“We are still looking at the next generation,” Gales said. “There is an open book, which is good. We have a world-class automotive manufacturer behind us. I see it as a new chapter. One has closed and we can start afresh. It’s good news for us, good news for the region. There’s loads to do and I’m here to stay.”

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  • LWOAP

    2021 is kind of a ways off though, isn’t it? I’m hoping Lotus can keep the Elise, Exige, and Evora fresh until then. Last thing I would want to see a dated car still being produced with no improvements made.

    *Cough* Maserati Granturismo *Cough*

    • Shobin Drogan

      Lotus can actually keep making refinements and performance improvements to the Exige/Elise just like how land rover and Mercedes does to their defenders or g class. There is always a group of track enthusiast that would be happy to throw their money toward the elise. But they have to keep making refinements every few years and also bring in other products. I agree their current lineup is ageing.

  • Six Thousand Times

    Build the SUV in China – keep it there.

  • John Mansfield

    Lotus have had a previous SUV approved by the Proton board. It was also slated for production in China. I imagine the new Board will be shown this, and Geely will add their technology and parts bin to the mix, along with a manufacturing assembly facility.
    I’m not an insider, just my opinion.

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