Lotus is reportedly set to reveal a brand new sports car next year, the first one to come out since Geely bought the small British car company.
The new model will use a “heavily revised” version of the brand’s current aluminum architecture, and will reach the market before the next-generation Elise, Exige and Evora models, as confirmed to Autocar by the company’s new CEO Phil Popham.
The new Elise, Exige and Evora are expected to arrive in around three to four years’ time, around 2022 or 2023, as they’re going to be based on a brand new platform that’s still under development.
As for 2020’s new Lotus, it’s expected to retain the sharp handling character the company is known for but offer more practicality and usability for every day scenarios. The automaker will focus on making the getting in and out of the vehicle more comfortable, as well as improving the ergonomics and offering a proper infotainment system.
Currently the most “practical” model in the range is the Evora with its 2+2 configuration, meaning that the new model will most likely be based on it. Popham said that the new Lotus will act as a bridge to the new era for the British car maker. “There’s this one car, then the new platform,” he said.
According to the Popham, all future models will eventually use electrification, but to what extend is still under discussion. “The focus for now is on replacing the products we’ve got today – the sports cars,” he said. “In a long time, Lotus has not had sight of what is required. You need a long term plan, a product plan and a business plan locked down with investment. We have that plan locked in.”
As for the new architecture that will underpin the new Elise, Exige and Evora, the company is now in the early development phase. The platform might not necessarily retain the same principles with the current one, which uses a bonded and extruded aluminum tub, if a better option becomes available. The good news are that Lotus will design the new platform to meet the regulations in all global markets, including both China and the U.S., from the get-go.