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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

An Entry-Level Lotus Evora is Coming to the USA


Copyright © 2016 Bold Ride LLC.

Ever since its earliest days in the 1950s, Lotus Cars has consistently produced high performance sports cars that deliver on founder Colin Chapman’s famous mantra, “simplify then add lightness.” The results have yielded such icons as the Seven, the Elan, and the famed Esprit.
However, the British automaker hasn’t had an easy run on US soil in recent years. The popular Elise left the market in 2011 due to compliance with federal road safety standards and the flagship Evora skipped a 2015 model year to receive updates for similar reasons.

Now however, the Evora is back for 2016 (in new Evora 400 guise) and it’s bringing an even more affordable sibling, according to a new report from Automotive News.


According to an interview with company CEO Jean-Marc Gales, a detuned entry-level Evora will soon be bound for US shores. The main reason? To increase fuel economy.

“Over a five-year period in the U.S. we have to show a three percent per year reduction in carbon dioxide emissions,” Gales told Automotive News. “One option is remove the supercharger.”

The current Lotus Evora readies a supercharged 3.5-liter Toyota V6. Gales told the paper removing the supercharger would be a much better option than replacing the V6 for a downsized four-cylinder. “We’ll do what McLaren does with the 570S by fitting an engine that already fits into the car,” Gales notes. A hybrid variant is said to be off the table.


Further, the addition of an entry-level Lotus Evora could put the company in a much more competitive market space in the US. Whereas the supercharged Evora 400 asks $89,900 for entry, a naturally aspirated version would undercut that price point and perhaps better align with sports car rivals like the $84,600 Porsche Cayman GT4 and $79,400 Chevrolet Corvette Z06.

Best of all, a next-generation Elise is said to be headed to US shores by 2020. It all points to a positive direction for Lotus in the US, and the British outfit will certainly be one to watch over the next few years.