First-Ever Lotus SUV Test Mule Spotted Near Company’s HQ

We’ve known to expect a Lotus-badged SUV for years now, especially after possible patent drawings were leaked back in 2017. Then, last year we had the company’s CEO all but confirm the vehicle, followed by multiple reports regarding its underpinnings.

Now, we have our first ever look at a prototype, albeit in test mule form, as it is wearing an old Lynk & Co 01 body in an attempt to hide its large wheels and low, aggressive stance.

Also, the fact that it was spotted hear Lotus’ headquarters in Hethel, Norfolk, is kind of a dead giveaway.

In case you’re wondering why the automaker would choose a Lynk & Co shell to hide the vehicle’s underpinnings, keep in mind that Lotus is now owned by the same company that owns both Volvo and Lynk & Co, namely Geely – who holds a controlling 51% share in the British sports carmaker.

Also read: Lotus Suggests Access To Geely Platforms Could Help It Build An SUV

Looking at the test mule, there are a few things we should touch on, like the general fit of those large wheels underneath the wheel arches. The Lynk & Co body was clearly modified to accommodate the wheels as well as what appears to be a wider track.

What’s even more interesting though is that high voltage sticker in the corner of the windshield, which together with the taped up fuel cap and absence of any visible exhaust tips, could indicate that the upcoming Lotus SUV will either be fully electric or partially electrified (plug-in hybrid).

Once ready, the Lotus SUV will “go round bends like nothing else in its segment,” said the automaker’s chief executive, Jean Marc Gales. The sporty people hauler will also share many components with the Volvo XC90 and XC60, among them numerous tech bits such as the Swedish brand’s touchscreen infotainment system.

As for performance, even if the Lotus ends up using a four-cylinder unit (courtesy of Volvo’s SPA platform), we know how good they are at extracting a great deal of power from small capacity engines. In other words, we’d be surprised if this SUV would put down less than 400 HP.

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Photo Credits: CarPix for CarScoops

  • Rocket

    I understand that survival today often means utility vehicles where you historically wouldn’t find them, but I’m particularly saddened by this one. And frankly, I’m not sure it’s going to work anyway. The finished product will need to be darn good.

  • 2PacOfCarscoop

    that an’t a lotus… (Lots of trouble, usually serious…) But some chinese knock off..

  • yonceous

    ma’am that’s a Lynk and co…

    • 2PacOfCarscoop

      FYI… It’s not Ma’am! Sir.

    • McFly

      *Creates a Powerpoint explaining the word “mule”*

  • Bash

    What a testing mule!! I’m actually liking it. I wonder at what time BMW will use Benz bodies as a mule and vice versa.

  • Willzyx

    This looks pretty damn good.


    • Mike anonymous

      The point is that the company needs (or wants, depending on your view) to make money, and SUVs’ are a quick and easy ‘sure-fire’ way to make that. Opposed to building a sports sedan (or any of the vehicle they originally debuted in 2010) an SUV would be a way to make money.

      To Make a long story short,.. the main point & reason is to ‘make money‘.

  • Kaido Alex

    Lotus has lost their heritage, and this is all thanks to the Chinese.

    • Ben

      No, poor business management did that.

    • Sovereignty

      Multiple owners with no money to invest ruined the heritage. General Motors being one of them!

    • pxsupply

      No it’s not. The Chinese will revive Lotus, just like they have with Volvo (Geely). Lotus have been in trouble financially for many decades and have had many different owners throughout the years incl GM. I am willing to bet that Geely will turnaround Lotus as they have done with Volvo.

      • KareKakk

        I hope and believe you will be right, but some chinese also… revived …the MG-brand…

  • HongKongFluey

    I give you the 2021 Dodge Magnum.

  • Sad, but if it will keep Lotus afloat… why not.

  • helloWorld

    looks like a dodge durango

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