This has the potential to be the best-handling electric sports car ever made.
Back in 2019, Lotus shocked the auto industry with the unveiling of the Evija, an extraordinary electric hypercar with nearly 2,000 horsepower to play with. But with production limited to 130 examples and a $2.1 million price tag, the halo hypercar is a radical departure from the affordable sports cars the company is renowned for.
Fear not, however, because Lotus is finally building a new sports car for the first time in over ten years. This will be the last combustion-powered Lotus sports car, marking the end of an era. Preparing for its electric future, Lotus has announced it's teaming up with Renault's Alpine to build a new all-electric sports car, which will be jointly engineered, designed, and developed by the two automakers. Offsetting the extra weight added by heavy battery packs is one of the biggest challenges automakers face when developing electric cars, so this sounds like a perfect partnership.
Like Lotus, Alpine specializes in lightweight sports cars with agile handling and has an illustrious racing history. With its extensive use of aluminum, the retro-inspired Alpine A110 only weighs 2,380 pounds, making it one of the lightest sports cars on the market. Combining both company's expertise could create the best-handling electric sports car ever made.
Lotus and Alpine will also develop joint services combining their engineering expertise, while Lotus will also "leverage Alpine's motorsport platform covering Formula One to Formula E and Endurance." Renault's F1 team will be rebranded as Alpine for the upcoming season.
"Today's announcement is the first step in what is set to be a hugely rewarding collaboration between our iconic brands. We are proud to be working with Groupe Renault in this collaboration - sharing Lotus' technical expertise and abilities, and leveraging our long track record of successful collaborations," said Phil Popham, CEO of Lotus Cars.
"Our companies have much in common - from a pioneering pedigree in light-weighting, to championship-winning sportscars which perform as impressively on the road as they do in the motorsports arena. It is a natural fit in many ways and the co-development of an EV sportscar is hugely exciting for our companies, our fans and customers around the world. The joint-services element of our agreement will additionally make our engineering expertise available to those wishing to engage our innovations."
In addition to the new EV sports car developed with Lotus, Alpine will also launch a new electric hot hatch and a C-segment crossover as part of Groupe Renault's plan to transform the company into an all-electric premium brand.