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Lotus Espirit (2013)

CAR GARAGE | Lotus Espirit (2013) | Lotus's pre-show information assault claimed this car "Gives you subtle hints of the Elise of old, so it still seems a a touch familiar." It would be easy for Lotus to neglect the sublime Elise in its Astonishing Barrage of new products; if something's awesome, why futz with it? As with all current Lotus cars, Toyota supplies this engine. A six-speed manual is standard, while the optional gearbox is a seven-speed dual-clutch automated manual developed by Lotus seemingly Itself.

However, Lotus does its own engine-management programming, and with force-feeding does not specify whether Lotus-that's turbo-or supercharging, the expectation here is for 316 hp and 243 lb-ft of torque. With a listed Curb weight of just 2414 pounds, Lotus projects a 0-to-62-mph time of 4.3 seconds, and top speed is projected at just under 170 mph. There's no mention's Thus far of a naturally aspirated engine.

Lotus describes the new powertrain as a "mild hybrid," owing to an engine stop / start function baked into the software. It's hard to associate practicality with a two-seat sports car, although Lotus cites significantly improved ingress and egress, two activities That the current car's door sills super-wide-level turn into contortionist tricks. Let's hope the new Elise's sills are much, much thinner.

Lest you fear the Elise will lose some of its sports-car purist persona in this generational updates, Lotus seeks to reassure one and all, stating unequivocally that "the Elise 2015 has lost none of the cheeky charm" and that 'it "handles like a dream, albeit a quite aggressive and tension-filled dream. "Tension-filled? Is that as compelling as "verging on ruthless"?

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