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Lotus has plans to release their new next-generation Esprit at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show and more details were recently released on their next sports car. The base model Esprit will be a hybrid, sporting a 100-hp electric motor and a naturally aspirated V8 engine.
Other variants of the Lotus will be more race inspired, ditching the electric motor and hybrid tag for more weight savings and additional horsepower. More details on the other models weren’t released, but we can expect a more pure driver’s car and everything “unnecessary” will be removed from them, as well as an abundant use of carbon fiber. Unfortunately no specs were released on the naturally aspirated V8 powerplant either.
The new Lotus Esprit will go on sale in Europe starting in Summer of 2013 and will mark the beginning of Lotus’ five-year, five-model plan.
Keep an eye on Lotus over the next six years, they just won a bid for this round of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF).
Lotus CEO Danny Bahar said in a press release that the money will help the company refresh its line of sports cars with best in class performance and emissions.
The RGF is meant to support projects and programs in the UK that will support private sector growth. A long list of companies competed for a share in the discretionary fund worth about $2.25 billion. Lotus got official confirmation from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills that they are among the accepted.
Bahar said that “this is a very significant boost to local communities, and the Regional Growth Fund will help businesses like Lotus to drive local growth.”
The funding will help Lotus further development of its new line up sports cars, including a next-generation Elise and Exige, as well as the new Esprit (above).
GALLERY: New Lotus Esprit
According to the CEO Lotus, Dany Bahar, the new Lotus Esprit will offer a more “authentic” driving experience than its rivals, the Ferrari 458 Italia and McLaren MP4-12C. Bahar has also claimed that the Esprit will “have the character and emotion” that McLaren lacks.
The all-new Esprit will launch in the spring of 2013 and will pack a serious punch. Bahar revealed that Esprit prototypes will be operational, and tested by November. The Esprit will be powered by a V8 producing as much as 570-hp. Bahar said the Esprit will be 80kg lighter and 40 percent smaller than the V8 built by Toyota originally slotted for the Lotus. Formula 1 KERS-style technology will also come equipped on the vehicle further adding to the driving experience.
Gallery: 2012 Lotus Esprit
Oh Lotus, you think you’re just so clever don’t you? With rumors flying that the British sports car company will be unveiling the next generation Esprit at this year’s Paris Auto Show, Lotus has just released these photos of company CEO Dany Bahar’s personal Lotus Esprit.
Along with a thorough detailing, Bahar’s Esprit received a fresh coat of Ice White Pearl. And…. well, that’s it.
While nothing has been confirmed you can bet Lotus will show the all-new Esprit in Paris. They even went to far as to point out that Bahar’s Esprit is a V8 model – suggesting the new Esprit will also sport a V8 (possibly the 5.0-liter from the Lexus IS-F). In addition, look for the new Evora S, a V6-powered Exige and two front-engine models.
GALLERY: Dany Bahar’s Lotus Esprit
[Source: Zer Customs]
The upcoming Lotus Esprit may be powered by a 500hp Lexus V10 according to a report in the U.K.’s EVO magazine. Lotus has a long time partnership with Lexus parent company Toyota, using its Celica-sourced 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine for the Elise and Exige, as well as its the Camry-sourced 3.5-liter V6 for the Evora. According to EVO this relationship extends not just to the Toyota powertrain department but also to the Lexus division – and Lexus just so happens to be readying its LF-A exotic with a 500 horse V10. There is also the possibility that the IS-F’s 417hp 5.0-liter V8 could be an option, as well as an entry-level 300hp direct-injection V6 motor.
The new Evora platform, which is to be the basis for the Esprit’s chassis, is capable of holding engines in either a transverse or longitudinal layout – giving more credence to the possibility that several different engines could be made available to buyers.
Lotus doesn’t plan to bring the Esprit to market until 2012, but it is dedicated to delivering a true exotic capable of taking on the Lamborghinis and Ferraris of the world.
There is also a strong possibility that Lotus could offer the Esprit with an electric powertrain.
The design sketch, above, gives a hint at what the upcoming Lotus Esprit may look like.