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Discussion Starter #1
Any subscription holders here that can give us the jist of the article?
 

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I've got it, not had chance to read it properly. General jist was that its the best Elise yet and goes like stink.

Overall they were impressed - I'll try and post later with more details if anyone hasn't done it by then.

Rich
 

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_JD_ said:
Also, the new Autocar has a 111R vs. VX220
And a 200mph Espirit rumor!
 

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Speaking of autocar, I found a little article on their website about taking AMG to toyota. Here's a clip:

"Among the kits going on sale before the end of the year is a supercharger for the 1.8-litre Corolla. Running a Roots-style blower from Japanese firm Ogura, it bumps power from 192bhp
to a Honda Integra Type-R-beating 228bhp at 7800rpm. Torque increases from 133lb ft to 184lb ft at 3900rpm."

Seems like good news to me. I just thought I'd share.
 

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The pic of the "Esprit" on the front of Autocar has good and bad with it. First, we should all pay attention because it is well known in Lotus circles that a new Esprit is in the works so this could be quite legit (at some level). Second, It's nice to see the wedge still intact. Part of the cars spirit has been it's devotion to the wedge shape and loosing touch with that would be dissappointing. If Lotus were to move away from the wedge, than it sould also move away from the Esprit name. The only the thing troubling me, and this is from what amounts to a 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" pic on this thread, the Esprit seems to have taken front end design cues from the last generation Chevy Camaro. I'd like to see more Elise/ M250 in the front end.
 

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wallabyguy said:
... the Esprit seems to have taken front end design cues from the last generation Chevy Camaro...
I agree, but we all know pictures - especially spyshots/renderings never really describe a car in 3D. I think if they have kept the wedge intact (another good observation, wallaby!) the car will look very different from a Camaro.

A recent example is the 'similar' front end of the new Ferrari 612 and Infinity G35. When you see the 612 in person it is far sexier than the G35 could ever hope to be. Pictures do not do the 612 justice.

I think the next Esprit will be low and wide with plenty of sex appeal. :)
 

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This car is not due out until 2008. A lot can change between now and then. The finished product may look nothing like the old car for all we know.
 

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Derek,

You bring up some good points with your comment. Alot can change between the intial renderings and the final product. Also, if my intel is correct, the sucessor to the M250 should hit the streets by mid 2005 to early 2006. this would come before a new Esprit and you would think that we would see a glimpse of that car prior to the Esprit. We all must keep in mind that Lotus is not GM or Ford. Lotus can produce a new model wth very few individuals involved and get it to the point of pre production before anything hits the street (word that is). Lotus kept the revisions to the Elise in 2000 very quiet up until launch and the M250 also caught us all flat footed. We could see a mid range car (production ready) hit the show circuit maybe at Geneva and maybe this Esprit as a "concept" at the same time. It would certainly bring Lotus to the forefront of the automotive press with the fed/111R Elise hitting the streets at the same time and generate some real interest in the brand.

All of this begs the question, acknowledging Lotus' relationship with Toyota regarding powertrains, how will the new models, if at all, utilize this relationship? If they do, prehaps we can garner some clues as to possible specs from upcoming Toyota models like the new LS (2006) and on again/ off again rumors of a new Supra/ Lexus supercar. A mid level car would certainly use a lower engine in the Toyota house such as a 3.3 from the ES and RX families. All of this on the basis that the 3.5 Twin Turbo unit will be phased out with the last Stevens Esprits (a good chance based on cost).
 

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It's time to retire the Esprit name.

The new car will be based on the Elise's chassis and will be fundamentally different enough that it deserves it's own name.
IMHO
 

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Robert Puertas said:
It's time to retire the Esprit name.
I'm not sure if that would be smart. The Esprit has strong name recognition amongst enthusiasts. Though the current car has sorely needed an update, discarding the name would be foolish. Consider it's brand strength. Lotus does not have the marketing dollars to build a new brand name with such recognition. Plus this name provides them a direct connection the old Lotus 'spirit'.

The Ford GT (40) is one such example.
 

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shinoo said:
I'm not sure if that would be smart. The Esprit has strong name recognition amongst enthusiasts. Though the current car has sorely needed an update, discarding the name would be foolish. Consider it's brand strength. Lotus does not have the marketing dollars to build a new brand name with such recognition. Plus this name provides them a direct connection the old Lotus 'spirit'.

The Ford GT (40) is one such example.
werd
 

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Robert- talked to one of the Lotus designer at the LA show. He said the new modular chassis they were working on wouldn't be use for the Elise. Sounds like it's for a mid-level car & the Esprit . My guess that image is a computer rendering, as Derek noted alot can change in the meantime.
 

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shinoo said:
I'm not sure if that would be smart. The Esprit has strong name recognition amongst enthusiasts. Though the current car has sorely needed an update, discarding the name would be foolish. Consider it's brand strength. Lotus does not have the marketing dollars to build a new brand name with such recognition. Plus this name provides them a direct connection the old Lotus 'spirit'.

The Ford GT (40) is one such example.
I agree it's like Porsche retiring the 911.
 

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Larry,

When he said wouldn't be used for the Elise, did he mean the 111R or the 2007 Elise? My guess is that the same platform may be used for the 2007 along with the mid range and Esprit. The current platform will likely die with the 111R.
 

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Robert- Going in was thinking along your lines. Asked about the next gen Elise, was told nothing was happening. Then asked about the modular chassis, said they were in the early stages and it would not be used for the Elise. This has me guessing a couple of thing, the complaint version they talked about in the waivers will be based on the current platform or the talk of one may be window dressing & they'll ask for another waiver (with new models coming out, not likely). Think they mention cost so most likely they've done the design work already & may come back to the Elise in a year or so, when they've got the mid-level & Esprit further along. Suppose it may be a problem trying to scale one platform across such a large range of sizes. My guess is the current platform will be around a while as they roll out two new models.
 
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