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Lotus has just announced that a of October 1st, former Ferrari executive Dany Bahar will take over at the helm of Group Lotus plc. Bahar moves into the position after former Lotus CEO Mike Kimberly retired in July due to health reasons.

At Ferrari Bahar worked as Senior VP of Commercial and Brand, where he oversaw not only the important job of road car sales, but also the lucrative merchandising aspect of the Italian automaker. Previous to to the position at Ferrari, he worked for Red Bull and helped organize the partnership between Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Toro Rosso with Ferrari, as well as the energy drink company's NASCAR efforts.

"Lotus has a worldwide reputation for innovative engineering and superb sports cars that lead the world in efficiency, design and dynamics," Bahar said in a statement. "With the recent launch of the award-winning Evora, there is proof that Lotus is better placed than many to capitalize on the rapidly changing automotive market. I can't wait to get my plans underway in October."

One has to wonder if Bahar's appoitment will usher in an era where Lotus returns its full efforts to the field of motorsports.

More: Report: Lotus Names ex-Ferrari Exec as New CEO on AutoGuide.com
 

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...i wasn't aware of his history with red bull prior to moving to ferrari - this could get really interesting...
 

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Get ready for Lotus toilet seat covers, Lotus slippers, Lotus underwear, etc. Part of the appeal of Lotus is its relative obscurity.
 

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Dont forget lotus branded femanin Hygene products............
 

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1. Cost to own a Lotus just went up
2. Ok with #1 if quality goes up also
3. Free Lotus from Proton (I can dream can't I)
4. Removal of all stickers and graphics :up:
5. Has enough ambition to take on Ferrari head to head and do it for less $$$
6. We get more classy Lotus merchandise :up::up:

Have to wait and see, but I hope Mr. Bahar gets Lotus out of ER. I'm cautiously optimistic. A start would be to survey every single Lotus owner for opinions - 25% response should be enough to get a good sampling. Certainly might clean out some of the "abrasive" Lotus reps/management.

Rob.
 

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I think it's an exciting move. :clap:

I'm optimistic about this for both Lotus and us as well

Time will tell ...
 

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I'm nervously optimistic, I guess.

His experience suggests that he knows the niche car market. But there is a fine line between exotic, niche, and mainstream sports cars. I mean, a $50,000 Lotus with quality and reliability could easily turn into a $200,000+ Ferrari. Great for those who can afford it, but I can't. At the other end of the spectrum, if they try to increase sales, they would have to start adding paddle-shift automatics, stability control, heated seats, and turn it into a Boxster. It'd be a great car, but I'm not sure that what I want. Of course, the best of both worlds is for Lotus to sell all of the above cars, and become a complete sports car company. And that take a LOT of resources.

I guess we'll find out which way the Lotus road turns.
 

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But they now have the Evora for the comfy/reliability lovers -- at least we "think" it's reliable. I think he could easily move the Evora into the Porsche market, not the BMW nor Audi market, but certainly at Porsche.

Still not sure how the Evora gained 1000 lbs over the Elise/Exige -- can't believe engine, slightly larger chassis, and insulation weighed in at +1000 lbs.

I've been somewhat successful at making my Exige S rattle/squeek free for A LOT less than +1000 lbs. But anyway - if they improve support/warranty I can see two distinct directions -- the main stream Evora and the Exotics direction like GT3 and ... ???

Lotus needs a true exotic, sorta a rights of passage car -- something with a BIG price tag and the balls to back it up. Don't need to make many, just enough to say "lets play" - heck, drop a 625 HP GM motor in (cheap), keep the car relatively light for it's class 2700-3300 lbs, $200,000-$400,000. Don't plan to sell many, it's not a car designed to turn a huge profit, it's a car to make a marketing stamp!

Then you build lots of Evora's and GT3's with all kinds of options that you can charge a fortune for (like Porsche). But ya gotta have that "staple" exotic to make the other models desirable -- it helps generate interest and demand in the cheaper models.

Dany is only 37 -- might be good or might be bad or he might just be along for the golden ride.

It can be done, but Lotus will probably need to "borrow" some cash and look 5 years down the road to see some good revenue -- I'm just not sure that is doable in this economy.

Rob.
 

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But they now have the Evora for the comfy/reliability lovers -- at least we "think" it's reliable. I think he could easily move the Evora into the Porsche market, not the BMW nor Audi market, but certainly at Porsche.

Still not sure how the Evora gained 1000 lbs over the Elise/Exige -- can't believe engine, slightly larger chassis, and insulation weighed in at +1000 lbs.

I've been somewhat successful at making my Exige S rattle/squeek free for A LOT less than +1000 lbs. But anyway - if they improve support/warranty I can see two distinct directions -- the main stream Evora and the Exotics direction like GT3 and ... ???

Lotus needs a true exotic, sorta a rights of passage car -- something with a BIG price tag and the balls to back it up. Don't need to make many, just enough to say "lets play" - heck, drop a 625 HP GM motor in (cheap), keep the car relatively light for it's class 2700-3300 lbs, $200,000-$400,000. Don't plan to sell many, it's not a car designed to turn a huge profit, it's a car to make a marketing stamp!

Then you build lots of Evora's and GT3's with all kinds of options that you can charge a fortune for (like Porsche). But ya gotta have that "staple" exotic to make the other models desirable -- it helps generate interest and demand in the cheaper models.

Dany is only 37 -- might be good or might be bad or he might just be along for the golden ride.

It can be done, but Lotus will probably need to "borrow" some cash and look 5 years down the road to see some good revenue -- I'm just not sure that is doable in this economy.

Rob.
I agree with this almost entirely... :up: Right now Lotus comes across as a niche car manufacturer... people think they only make little toy cars. They need a high-end flagship model if they want to ever capture mindshare as a prestigious brand. That model would allow other models such as the Evora to truly compete with Porsche (although they should probably put more effort into the details and refinement, based on my in-person impressions of the Evora)
 

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Oh, well this is kind of upsetting to me, seeing as how Ferrari is jinxed whenever I make an effort with some of their merchandise...

1st Ferrari Hat - Stolen
2nd Ferrari Hat- Flew into the Ocean after a sub ride
Ferrari Diecast car - Broken door
3 Ferrari R/Cs - All broken steering. (Not my fault)

So yeah...
 
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