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Proton unveils prototype Hybrid Car Developed In Collaboration With Lotus

April 16, 2007 Malaysia’s National auto manufacturer Proton has unveiled its first Hybrid prototype, designed in collaboration with Lotus Engineering. It is just over two decades since the company bolted together its first cars from Mitsubishi parts imported from Japan, but as the company has grown in strength, it has acquired considerable engineering design, development and manufacturing expertise, pulling off a major coup with its acquisition of Lotus in 1996. The 'EVE Hybrid' (Efficient, Viable, Environmental) research and development project was a collaboration of Proton and Lotus and EVE sports some impressive vital statistics. EVE has a 1.6litre petrol engine, which uses a 'micro-hybrid' start-stop system, a full parallel hybrid drive and a continuously variable transmission to achieve fuel economy of 5.6 litres/100km. maximum torque of whopping 233Nm at 1500rpm and maximum power of 105kW at 5500rpm enabling the car to accelerate from 0-100km/h in 9.0 seconds with a top speed of 188.8 km/h.  Read More

Lotus Exige Police Car

February 16, 2007 Lotus Cars Australia has donated a special new recruit to the NSW Police Bankstown Local Area Command with the arrival of a high performance Lotus Exige. The lightweight, high performance Lotus Exige sports car will be used by Bankstown Local Area Command for a number of community policing roles over the next six months, including most importantly, helping to build better relations between police and local performance car enthusiasts and youth. The precedent for this co-operation with the police was set in the UK where Lotus forged a similar relationship with the Norfolk Constabulary lending the force a Lotus Elise to achieve similar goals. “Following the success of the co-operation with Norfolk Police we saw the chance to link up with NSW Police to help it achieve similar goals,” said Lotus’ Jon Stretton. “The Norfolk Police had similar challenges to Bankstown Local Area Command with performance car enthusiasts and in establishing stronger relations to help prevent unacceptable behaviour.”  Read More

British Racing (Very) Green Lotus

August 24, 2006 Lotus has always danced to a different drum. When the rest of the world was building muscle cars in the sixties and seventies, it went the other way. Light weight, superb handling, miniscule frontal areas and svelte aerodynamic efficiency became the hallmarks of Lotus roadsters which always did more with less. Now the Lotus brand is further extending its values towards the responsible use of resources with the Lotus Exige 265E which runs on environmentally friendly bio-ethanol E85 - 85% ethanol alcohol and 15% petrol! As the Exige uses a supercharged and intercooled engine, Lotus engineers saw the opportunity to prove the point that green sportscars can offer high performance by exploiting the performance characteristics of ethanol. Ethanol has a high octane rating, which allows an optimum timing for engine ignition and has a fast flame speed in the combustion chamber, so the fuel burns faster, increasing the efficiency of the engine. Ethanol has less stored energy per unit volume than gasoline so the fuel economy is less, however as E85 ethanol is 85% sourced from renewable bio matter, there is a net reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2). The beauty of using ethanol though, is its ability to produce more power in the engine than with conventional petrol and the Exige 265E is the most powerful road Exige ever. The Exige 265E now produces 264 bhp at 8000 rpm (up 21% over the petrol Exige S), and 184 lbft of torque at 5500 rpm (up 16%). The performance figures are pretty healthy for a green machine: 0-60 mph in 3.88 seconds, 0-100 mph in 9.2 seconds and a top speed of 158 mph!  Read More

The Lotus Type 119c soapbox racer

The rise in popularity of gravity (aka soapbox) racing has been spectacular in recent years, and one of the most successful teams has been the Lotus team from the famous motorsport constructor and design studio. Now the team is heading for a showdown at the Brooklands Museum Soapbox Derby on 16 July, 2006. The Lotus Type 119c soapbox racer is the reigning Goodwood Festival of Speed Gravity Racing champion and record holder, beating Bentley and B.A.R in the final event held in 2004. Following the omission of the downhill event from the crowded Goodwood Festival of Speed line-up, attention has turned to the Extreme Gravity Racing (XGR) Series in the USA, and the UK-based Brooklands Soapbox Derby which ran for the first time last year, being won by the gravity racer of another famous motorsport group – Lola. Accordingly, two unbeaten cars will face off for the Brooklands title. The closed-cockpit Lotus Type 119c "streamliner" features an aerodynamically-efficient ultra-light carbon-fibre monocoque, remaining true to the "performance through light weight" philosophy of Lotus founder Colin Chapman. It will be lining up once again against familiar automotive constructors such as Lola, Vauxhall and Ford as well as entries from schools, colleges and privateers. Excellent image library with this story. We have previously covered several extreme gravity racing stories such as Motorsport without the motor, the design of the Volvo Extreme Gravity Car and The billycart goes (WAY) upmarket!  Read More

Lotus rebirths GT-inspired two-seater Europa

February 24, 2006 Lotus is preparing to launch its new Grand Tourer, the Lotus Europa S (bottom right), at next week’s Geneva Motor Show. Code-named Sepang during its development, the new GT signals the re-birth of the Europa model name, last used by Lotus in the early 1970s (top right). No longer will the outrageous fun and exhilaration of driving a true Lotus require Lotus customers to make such significant compromises when it comes to the practicality of living with their 'pride and joy' on a daily basis. The purity and simplicity of the Lotus Elise and Exige ranges is now perfectly complemented with the arrival of the new Europa S - a car which stays true to the Lotus philosophy of 'Performance through light weight', but recognises that for some, the Elise and Exige experience may sometimes prove just a little too 'extreme'!".  Read More

The Type 1 Lotus Watch

February 2, 2006 The Type 1 Lotus Watch is the first wrist watch to be created by Lotus Design, the design studio responsible for all Lotus current and future products, as well as numerous client programmes. The bespoke timepiece which is infused with Lotus core values through its appearance which is highly technical, yet clean, stylish and elegant. However, the Type 1 Lotus watch is not a mere branding exercise; it was designed by Lotus Design, and boasts beautifully crafted components. These include an orange anodised aluminium crown guard mounted on a black dial with the Lotus roundel, taking inspiration from precision automotive and race parts used in the modern day Lotus sports car.  Read More

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