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The current Lotus Exige is on the way out. Production has stopped for the European spec model since last December, because its current 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine does not meet current emission standards. And here at home, Lotus just announced a Final Edition model to bring the car’s run to a close.
So what is Lotus to do with the Exige now? Simple answer, make a V6 version with the engine out of the Evora. But it is no easy swap. The Toyota-sourced V6 engine is bigger, so Lotus has been running a test mule with a wider track and a longer wheelbase.
Don’t think the next Exige will be some Frankensteinien-like disfigured monster either, cobbled together hastily. The new car will be mostly new and its styling will be quite different. Lotus design boss Donato Coco thinks their current line-up looks “too weak” and wants to inject more style in their future models.
So expect the new Exige to have the new family look as previewed by Lotus at various auto shows over the last year. Their first completely new model will be the Esprit, which is due in 2013.
For the time-being, an updated Exige along with the current Evora should allow Lotus to bridge the gap between their current and their future cars.