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https://www.edp24.co.uk/business/lotus-boss-reveals-more-details-about-new-car-to-be-built-at-hethel-1-6402471

Article #400 in a series: Lotus reveals no details of a car they will not build. It will cost between $0 and $1M, It will definitely not be, but it might be, an SUV. It will be the most practical car Lotus has ever built, but also the lightest, fastest, and truest to Mr. Chapman's original ethos. Production will rise to 10,000 units, while maintaining the level of exclusivity that has somehow eluded every other brand, from Gucci to Porsche, who has tried to do the same, as their products became available everywhere.

Engine size will be between .3 and 5.0 liters, weight between 1800 and 4000 lbs. It will have at least 1 but not more than 6 seats. Production begins sometime between now and 2026. A convertible version will follow within at least 15 years of initial production.

The chassis will be bonded, hydroformed, riveted and welded, and consist of an as-yet-to-be-discovered alloy of tin, carbon fiber, high-strength steel, aluminum, titantium, and carbonite. Body-in-white will weigh -350 lbs. to offset the expected upgrade to wipers that make less noise.
 

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Actually, there is clarification in a clear negative statement:

We have not confirmed we are making an SUV, none of the articles originated from me, our focus is on sports cars and to re-establish ourselves as a premium sports car manufacturer with a range of prices, building on what we were in the past, and we have confirmed the new car is the next volume sports car. We will move into other segments when the brand is strong enough to support it.
So they're not walking away from trying to compete in the sports car market first and foremost and at a 'volume' level. Now 'volume' may just mean 1000 cars/year instead of ~100 (as with the Evija) but the discussion about money going into Hethel with the intent of pushing the facility to its eventual capacity limit suggests that they're thinking in the neighborhood of 3000+ units/year fairly quickly. Back in the early S2 Elise days I think they claimed a capacity of around 10,000 units/year for the Hethel site at that time.

As for the C8 throwing a wrench into things, I doubt it. The C8 has been a well-understood thing for at least a year, and I would be surprised if a large PRC-based multinational company didn't know a lot more about that car a lot sooner than the automotive press did, for instance. PRC megacorps didn't exactly invent industrial espionage, but they're generally very good at it.
 

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Again as stated elsewhere, Stelvio Quad stole their potential thunder! Too late to the party for Lotus and SUV. Hot hatch....?????
 

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Actually I think he's telling fibs about the right way of doing an SUV is not to sticking a Lotus badge on it.
I think that is exactly the right way of doing it. Take some Volvo or whatever, subtlety restyle it. Stick a badge on it.
A lightweight, driver focused, great handling SUV is the car no one asked for ever. It doesn't make any sense at all.
But an impractical, form over function design, badge snob appealing, expensive, (poor taste demonstrating) fashion statement is exactly what SUV buyers want. Easy.
The only thing is Lotus needs more premium cachet for its brand before its brand is desirable to that type of consumer. Perhaps the Evija will deliver that though.
 
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