Lotus, the name alone has a major pulling power for anyone with an interest in automotive engineering. The brand is this year, 2010, getting back into the heady world of Formula 1 racing with a brand new vehicle, but it is the road cars that are set to really excite the world of motoring. The latest in the long line of cars all starting with the letter E is the simply stunning Evora 2+2.
Yes, a Lotus with seats in the front for the lovers and for those with kids two smallish seats in the back. Sorry, I say that again, seats in the back for the kids in a Lotus? Surely not. Well, yes even Lotus has had to be realistic and produce a sports car that is environmental friendly and with space for the little darlings too.It’s the first step in a new and radical approach by the company to broaden the appeal of its products away from just the hard and fast petrol heads of the world and into pastures rarely trod by a ‘sports car manufacturer’. Dare I say it, safe, conventional, convenient and ordinary cars! Well that would be the case if it were not for the Lotus heritage and the magic of the badge.
This, however, has not stopped a stellar list of A listers to queue up outside the production facility at Hethel in the Norfolk Broads to test the Evora, including Jodie Kidd, George Clooney, Kevin Spacey, J-Lo and James Bond 007 himself Daniel Craig.
The Evora from the outside shows clear family lineage from the Espirit, Elan and Elise and everything has been kept in that needs to make it a Lotus in appearance. The car is also lightweight at just 1380kg, which is unsurprisingly heavier than the other contemporary vehicles in its class. Much of the extra weight is easily accounted for. In the Elise you got essentially a car, engine and only the essential parts that made it go, absolutely no luxuries. In the Evora, you feel as though you are looking at the other side of the coin. Air condition is standard across the range, leather bucket seats swallow you up in a warm and soft feeling and for those that could not live without being ‘connected’ wifi and mobile cell phone connectivity is also available as is a DVD player for the kids in the rear.
The Evora is also taller than other Lotus models, and men (and women for that matter) who have grown to 6 foot 5 inches tall can easily be accommodated inside the Evora, try that in a Elise! But it is the statistics that usually make petrol heads go weak at the knees with a 3,456cc VC6 engine producing 280 brake horse power. This is enough to give a top speed of 162 miles per hour and a 0 to 60 time of 4.9 seconds. Understandably fuel consumption is never going to impress a Greenpeace warrior at 32.5 miles per gallon but hey you are driving a £49,875 Lotus, who cares what the green fraternity thinks…you are having fun and allowing your kids some of the action too