Evora 400 Roadster Update - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 12:19 AM Thread Starter
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Evora 400 Roadster Update

Before you all get too excited....it's nothing super official but here's the email response I got back from a MotorCars of Georgia sales rep:

"Hey Istvan,

I enjoyed our conversation last week and look forward to helping you find another Lotus when the time is right. I did hear back from my rep and it looks like the car is on board to be a 2019 model released sometime in 2018. I can keep you in the loop as we find out more ourselves. Let me know what else I can help with."

I spent some time calling around to Lotus USA, MotorCars of Georgia and I've been hounding Wright Lotus of Pittsburg's Larry Sano who sold me my current S1 (great guy to deal with), and no one had any info on when the roadster might show up until I got this tidbit back from Blake down in GA.

Consider it a "FWIW" to those of you that are like me and awaiting the roadster version of the 400 to arrive.

Any other info that you guys out there might have would be greatly appreciated by more than just me I'm sure.

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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 03:14 AM
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Personally I wouldn't put too much faith in what a sales rep at a dealership told me. The light at the end of the tunnel though, is that with the majority interest of Lotus soon to be held by Geely, the injection of money into the brand will revitalize several projects that were mothballed by Proton. So, yes, the future looks bright.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 03:42 AM
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Even disregarding all the uncertainty (both good and bad) surrounding the Geely purchase, look at what dealers were saying when the 400 was "on its way". I heard a dealer say that it'd be here nearly a year before it actually got here, and then said dealer is now shuttered. Granted, Lotus stated that the delays came from the US dragging their feet with getting it certified, there's no telling.

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 04:52 AM
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It's certainly typical for a company to release the hardtop version before the convertible version of pretty much every car, and Lotus, being far from typical, and given their somewhat lackadaisical approach to model years, US regulations, etc. it's certainly not surprising that there would be a more than average delay. What I think is frustrating is there were repeated statements concerning the roadster and how easy it was going to be to produce it, the design having been engineered in from the beginning. The original Evora has been around since 2010. The roadster has been just around the corner for 3 years?. One of the things I saw in a Geely article was that the engineering for the top had been changed, and that was adding to the delay. Did they spend 3 years on panels and then decide it wasn't workable? Maybe a few less special editions (and I realize it's not very expensive to "engineer" new paint colors and wheel designs), and some of the funding could have been diverted to solving the top issues. Heck, even an Elise-type top might have worked (and yes, I know it's a wider car). A quick look at dealer inventory seems to suggest there are more than a few 400's for sale, and that's a shame, but many have posted they are waiting for the roadster version. If Geely is developing a new priority list, I hope they put a soft top for the Evora at the front. (Bucket list for today: Lotustalk rant - check!)
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 05:15 AM
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Delaying the roadster is likely delaying sales, many of us here have said we are waiting for it.

But maybe it can be worth it if they develop a nicer version. An Elige type soft top is a roadster I guess but something nicer would be great. I'd love to see something more like McLaren's.

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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simplife View Post
Personally I wouldn't put too much faith in what a sales rep at a dealership told me. The light at the end of the tunnel though, is that with the majority interest of Lotus soon to be held by Geely, the injection of money into the brand will revitalize several projects that were mothballed by Proton. So, yes, the future looks bright.
The same optimism was forecast for Lotus when DRB Hicom purchased controlling iterest in Proton.
They were supposed to bring the capital to get things upright and moving, but here we are again now hoping that Geely can do it.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 07:47 AM Thread Starter
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I know all about delays and what it means when Lotus states "soon". Hell, I'm the guy that had an Evora S on special order and eventually cancelled the order because of delays in production. So believe me that I take any timeline from them with huge grain of salt. That's why I wrote this as more of a FWIW.

It's not coming from a salesman's mouth per se, but from a Lotus rep's in England. Let's hope it's true. The damn thing was supposed to be here by now.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 06:22 PM
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while searching for something else, i found this thread.. made me laugh since the topic came back up..
https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f170...ertible-73785/
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-31-2017, 07:15 PM Thread Starter
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while searching for something else, i found this thread.. made me laugh since the topic came back up..
https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f170...ertible-73785/
Oh boy.......that is depressing, isn't it?
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 10:14 AM
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Lotus said earlier that the top would be removable panels that fit in the back seat. When I test drove the 400, I thought the interior of the roof showed the places where T-top cutouts would be. I hope Lotus has committed to something that can be stored in the car for those of us who live in areas where we get actual rain. It's difficult to justify a $100K car that can only be used on the 6 days per year with a zero chance of rain in the forecast.

Here's a rendering I came across on some blog post last year. I could live with a car that looks like this, with the roof panels in the back seat.


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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 11:20 AM
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When I spoke with the Lotus North American rep taking the prototype 400s around he confirmed that it will be a (or 2) removable panels. Didn't sound like "T" configuration. I pleaded the case for keeping the 2+2 back seats but he said the panels must be onboard stowable. So, no more 2+2.

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 11:20 AM
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That looks fantastic!

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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 11:28 AM
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Don't the modern high performance roadsters (McLaren 650, Ferrari 488, etc.) all have automatic folding roofs? I assume these are expensive plus heavy. But will buyers put up with a manual lift off T-top/targa roof in a ~$100k car?

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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
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Don't the modern high performance roadsters (McLaren 650, Ferrari 488, etc.) all have automatic folding roofs? I assume these are expensive plus heavy. But will buyers put up with a manual lift off T-top/targa roof in a ~$100k car?
If they do it like the Alfa Romeo 4c Spider, it's not bad at all. Rolls up and stows quickly. Not heavy and you won't drop it, break it, or damage the finish or paint.

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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-02-2017, 01:41 PM
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Quite Lotusy to get out and manually work the top.

Sorta like the rolling start. It works. Provides some "sense of occasion"

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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 05:00 AM
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As long as panels are not so heavy or cumbersome that they require 2 people, they will be fine. Therefore, I think/hope it will be two panels and not just one. I'm not sure that a single panel could fit in the back anyway.

Besides the weight and expense, adding an automatic folding roof would likely eliminate all the space in the back entirely. I think panels and a residual storage shelf are a lot more useful for anyone who wants to use this car as a daily driver, which seems to be Lotus's intention after revising the side sills and upgrading the interior.

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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 06:41 AM
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Two other takes

There were a lot of these floating around at one point
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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Everything I've been hearing and reading is to expect two carbon fiber roof panels that the driver manually takes out and stows behind the front seats. No auto fold mechanism fortunately.....add lightness, not weight! This configuration would suggest a T bar/top style as there needs to be some sort of supporting structure for the CF panels.

The pics of the full on Evora convertible rendering don't jive with the information that's floating around out there or with what's come out of Jean Marc Gale's mouth directly. Either way.......just get on with it already!

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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
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If they do it like the Alfa Romeo 4c Spider, it's not bad at all. Rolls up and stows quickly. Not heavy and you won't drop it, break it, or damage the finish or paint.
Except it won't be a roll up like the Elise (or the 4C judging by your comment). It will be two lightweight CF panels that a person can easily remove by themselves and stow behind the front seats. That was quoted straight from the CEO if I recall correctly. The rear seats will not be an option on the roadster.

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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-03-2017, 09:43 AM
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Seriously, when will someone with cajones and a saw just make this happen. Apparently waiting on lotus to do it takes the kind of patience that warrants sainthood.


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