Tech

2022 Lotus Emira, the brand’s first and last new petrol sports car in a decade, is launched

British sports car expert Lotus has disclosed the long-awaited successor to its active Elise, Exige, and Evora models: the 2022 Lotus Emira. Riding on an all-new ‘Elemental’ sports car platform, the Emira will serve as the indirect successor to the active Elise, Exige, and Evora models as well as will be the final new Lotus model launched with a combustion engine, as all new models from here on will employ electric power only.

A decision of two petrol engines will be offered for duty behind the Emira’s cockpit: one familiar to the Lotus brand, and one not really recognizable.

It’s Lotus’ last vehicle fitted with a combustion engine, with all new models to follow set to use electric propulsion only.

The drive comes from the current Toyota-derived 3.5-liter supercharged V6 already fitted to the Exige and Evora, or the alternative of a smaller 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder acquired from the Mercedes-AMG A45, CLA45, and GLA45.

The previous will be offered with a manual or traditional torque-converter automatic, while the latter will be exclusively paired to an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission.

The first cars to carry out of the Lotus manufacturing plant next autumn (March to May) will be restricted run ‘First Edition’ models, powered by the 3.5-liter supercharged Toyota-derived V6 that saw use in the Exige and Evora.

Mid-2022 will see the presentation of Mercedes-AMG’s 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine – as utilized in the A45, CLA45, and GLA45 models – which profits by new air intake and exhaust systems to fit the Emira’s mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive layout.

While particulars stay thin on the ground, Lotus guarantees power outputs “across the Emira range” of somewhere in the range of 269kW and 298kW, with the most extreme torque in the fastest variants fixed at 430Nm.

Purchasers will have a choice of manual, torque-converter automatic, and dual-clutch automatic gearboxes – with the AMG four-cylinder matched to the German brand’s eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, and the supercharged V6 comprehended to employ the manual and ‘regular’ auto alternatives.

The British carmaker guarantees the Emira range will be equipped for a 0-100km/h run time under 4.5 seconds, towards a top speed of over 290km/h. CO2 emissions will begin below 180g/km, to help follow progressively stringent European emissions rules.

Those figures put the new car generally on par (if somewhat behind) the final Evora variant to be offered, the GT410, which separated 306kW/410Nm from the 3.5-liter V6, pushing it to 100km/h from zero in 4.2 seconds, a top speed of 300km/h (with a manual), and a CO2 emissions claim of 235g/km.

In its lightest form, the Emira weighs in at 1405kg (DIN kerb) – up to 44kg heavier than the active Evora GT410 in its lightest Sport manual guise,

Supporting the new Lotus is an all-new platform, however, it actually employs the brand’s fortified expelled aluminum technology first pioneered on the Elise in the late 1990s.

Goodyear Eagle F1 Supersport tires, hydraulic steering, and the ‘Tour’ suspension tune are standard-fit, with an optional Lotus Drivers Pack adding stickier Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, launch control, and a stiffer ‘Sports’ suspension tune.

On the styling front, the Emira draws signals from the bigger, all-electric Evija hypercar – obvious upfront in the smaller car’s twin-blade vertical LED headlights (standard across the range) and adjacent cooling vents both propelled by its bigger brother.

A set of 20-inch alloy wheels fill the arches, while a sculpted cut into the side doors assists flow air into a pair of cooling intakes for the mid-mounted petrol engine.

‘LOTUS’ branding extends across the rear end, flanked by C-shaped LED tail-lights and air exit vents behind the wheel arches. Double exhaust tips and an enormous diffuser likewise feature.

There’s no active aerodynamics to speak of, in contrast to its bigger sibling, as Lotus says the Emira is the “only model in its class” to make passive downforce that is balanced between the front and back axles at all speeds.

The model measures in at 4412mm long, 1895mm wide (with mirrors folded), and 1225mm high, riding on a 2575mm wheelbase – 37mm longer, 50mm wider, and 15mm lower than the Evora, with an indistinguishable wheelbase (however Lotus guarantees the two cars are unrelated).

Inside, the Emira mixes Lotus’ famed stripped-out, driver-focused cabins of old with the technology expected of a modern sports car.

Front travelers sit in unique sport bucket seats – offered with four-way or 12-way electric adjustment – while the driver grips a flat-bottomed (and flat-topped) steering wheel managed in Alcantara on First Edition models, as imagined all through.

They’re joined by heritage-focused subtleties including manual shift lever positioning said to be motivated by the notorious Esprit, semi-exposed manual gear linkages in the center console (from the Elise and Exige), and a red cover over the start/stop button not unlike that found in a modern Lamborghini.

A 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and satellite navigation includes instead of the Evora’s eminently aftermarket like 7.0-inch touchscreen, while a configurable 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster behind the steering wheel – with the software for the two units of Lotus’ own design.

A spotlight has been placed on cabin storage, with two cup holders between the occupants, a phone storage slot, door bins capable of holding 500ml bottles, a glovebox, 12-volt and USB ports, and a console net.

There are 208 liters of space on proposal behind the seats, or an extra 151 liters behind the engine – professed to be sufficient for a carry-on suitcase or set of golf clubs.

A premium sound system planned by the UK’s KEF is accessible, alongside an array of convenience touches keyless entry, rain-sensing wipers, power-folding door mirrors, front and rear parking sensors, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, stolen vehicle tracker, and curtain airbags.

A range of active safety systems is accessible for the first time, including versatile cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, lane-departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, traffic-sign recognition, driver fatigue detection, and a speed limiter.

Six exterior colors are accessible at launch – Hethel Yellow, Shadow Gray, Magma Red, Nimbus Gray, Dark Verdant, and Seneca Blue – in addition to seven interior colors, five wheel options, and four brake caliper hues.

First deliveries of the new 2022 Lotus Emira will initiate in the northern spring of 2022 (March to May), with production to happen at a new manufacturing facility in Lotus’ hometown of Hethel, UK.

Australian pricing will be declared nearer to the vehicle’s local appearance, however, UK costs are scheduled to start from under £60,000 (AU$110,000) – somewhat less than an active Exige Sport 390 Final Edition, which costs £64,000 (AU$118,000) in the UK, or $149,950 before on-road costs Down Under.

European deliveries of the 2022 Lotus Emira are guaranteed between March and May this year. Australian pricing is yet to be affirmed, nonetheless, in the UK an entry-level figure of approximately £60,000 (AU$110,000) is expected.

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