Lotus Cars is a manufacturer of automobiles based in Hethel in Norwich (Norfolk ), UK, which was founded by Colin Chapman. Connected to the vehicle manufacturer was the former racing team Team Lotus. 1996 Lotus Cars was acquired by the Malaysian company Proton. 2012 sold this Lotus also to the Malaysian company DRB - HICOM.
- 2.1 In Production
- 2.2 Former
- 2.3 Timeline
- 2.4 Cooperation with other carmakers
Colin Chapman began his business career in 1947 with custom based on the technology of the Austin 7 1952, he founded the company Lotus Engineering, which he divided into Lotus Components and Lotus Cars 1959. Unlike other companies in the Lotus Group Lotus Cars operation never even racing, but supported at best his customers.
The first successful production model of Lotus, the Lotus 6, was sold as a kit. Despite the small number of about 100 cars won the Lotus 6 numerous successes, even in uphill races. The subsequent and developed by Frank Costin Lotus 8 was not only the foundation for his successor Mk 9 and Mk 10, was oriented to him also the Mk 11, a race car in its class and the 24 - hour race at Le Mans won.
1957 Lotus produced its first all imaginary racing car. With the Mk 12 began a successful racing career, during which Lotus won several times the world title of the designers. Title and first prizes reached Colin Chapman not primarily due to performance increase, but through lightweight and novel manufacturing processes. Not infrequently, so he threw competitors before he disobeyed elementary safety rules in favor of advanced technology and used, among other things " under-sized " components, for example, very delicate suspension. Should be noted, however, remains that Chapman has contributed significantly to the development of the Grand Prix car. A example is the Lotus 25 from 1962, until then the slimmest and lowest F1 race car. During Lotus 25 Chapman had replaced the tube frame of just a few weeks ago brought out Lotus 24 by a known airplane- monocoque ( shell ) construction. This could reduces the weight by about 20 kg, which is important for road holding and handling Torsion be increased. Meanwhile (1957 ) was the elite with an aerodynamic body made of fiberglass on the market.
In 1967, the Elan 2 in the program, a 2 2- seater, which was derived from the 1961 Elan. A new front -drive model with a Japanese four-cylinder turbocharged engine, which was presented in 1990, was a flop. The production was eventually discontinued in 1993 and sold the license to Kia. Early seventies started the Esprit, which was built until 2004.
Died in 1982 company founder Colin Chapman. The company went public in 1986 in the possession of General Motors. In August 1993, GM sold the company to the ACBN Holdings SA Italian entrepreneur Romano Artioli, who also owned Bugatti Automobili SpA. In 1996, the Malaysian Perusahaan Nasional Bhd Otomobil ( proton) the majority of Lotus. Since December 2008, Lotus is present with the brand EuropeStar also in the market of the People's Republic of China, whose models are identical to the proton models.
At the Mondial de l'Automobile 2010 Lotus announced five new models within the next five years. These are new editions of the models Esprit ( 2013), Elan ( shifted for better marketing of the Evora from 2013 to 2017) and Elite ( 2014 ), as well as the successor to the current Elise ( from 2015 ). As a new model Lotus announced the four-seater GT Eterne. While Esprit, Elite and Eterne are driven by a 5 -liter V8, is to receive a 4 -liter V6, the Elan, the Elise a novel 2- liter in-line four-cylinder with about 320 hp. All new engines are charged. 2011 showed the Lotus City Car Lotus Ethos with 1.2L hybrid engine, based on a concept of the Malaysian Proton owner.
- Lotus Elise Series 3 / Elise CR, Elise and Elise 1.6 S ( since 2010)
- Lotus Exige Series 3 V6 ( since 2011 )
- Lotus Evora (since 2009)
- Lotus Exos T125 ( since 2011 )
- Lotus Eleven ( 1956-1958 )
- Lotus Seven ( 1957-1972 )
- Lotus Elite ( 1957-1963 and 1974-1982 )
- Lotus Elan ( 1962-1975 and 1989-1995 )
- Lotus Europa ( 1966-1975 )
- Lotus Eclat ( 1974-1982 )
- Lotus Esprit ( 1976 to 2004 )
- Lotus Excel ( 1982-1992 )
- Lotus 340R (2000)
- Lotus Elise Series 1 (1996 to 2000)
- Lotus Exige Series 1 (2000 to 2001)
- Lotus Elise Series 2 / 111 Elise and Elise 111S (2000-2006 )
- Lotus Elise Series 2 / Elise 111R and Elise R (2004-2010)
- Lotus Elise Series 2 / Elise S (2006-2010)
- Lotus Elise Series 2 / Elise SC (2008-2010 )
- Lotus Elise Series 2 / Elise Club Racer ( 2009 to 2010 )
- Lotus Exige Series 2 (2004-2010)
- Lotus Exige S Series 2 - facelift version (2010)
- Lotus Europa S and SE ( in 2006 and 2008 to 2010)
- Lotus 2 -Eleven (2007 to 2011)
Cooperation with other car manufacturers
- Ford Lotus Cortina MK1 and MK2
- Developed for the French manufacturer Talbot Lotus Sunbeam Talbot a sportier version of the Talbot Sunbeam Lotus 16V.
- For Opel Lotus developed a high -performance version of the sedan Omega. The vehicle was a Lotus Omega, or sold in England as a Lotus Carlton.
- Developed for Opel / Vauxhall and Lotus produced the Opel Speedster / Vauxhall VX220. It is based on the extended Lotus Elise chassis. On the same basis Lotus now offers the Lotus Europa.
- Lotus took part in the development of the Tesla Roadster, and build the vehicle at its factory in Hethel.
- The company ZAP is supported in the development of an electric sports car from Lotus.
- Lotus is / was involved in, among others, the co-development of the following cars: Aston Martin DB9, DeLorean DMC-12, Chevrolet Corvette ZR -1 C4, Dodge EV, Nissan GT -R, Hennessey Venom GT, Dodge Spirit R / T, Toyota MR2, Toyota Supra, Isuzu Piazza, Isuzu Impulse, Mahindra Scorpio