This is one very special Lotus.
There will never be another new Lotus like the all-new Emira. What we're looking at is the final combustion-engined sports car from Hethel and it's having its global debut at the 2021 Goodwood Festival of Speed. A replacement for the Exige and Evora, the Emira will come powered by a choice of two engines: an AMG-sourced 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder with 360 horsepower or the familiar (one of our favorite engines) 3.5-liter supercharged V6 courtesy of Toyota, now tuned to churn out a healthy 400 hp and 317 lb-ft of torque.
Buyers will have a choice of a six-speed manual, automatic, and dual-clutch. And yes, the Emira is a global model and will go on sale in the US in the near future. We're still waiting for more details from Lotus, but we can confirm this thing is fast. Zero to 62 mph takes less than 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 180 mph.
Based on current figures, it's fair to assume these numbers are for the V6. Not everyone was a fan of the Evora's styling, but the Emira is clearly a stunner because it looks like a downsized version of the Evija all-electric hypercar. And like its many Lotus ancestors, the Emira is all about slashing weight and adding power. Or, as the late great Lotus founder, Colin Chapman, put it: "Simplify, then add lightness."
The company says the car's target weight is just 3,097 pounds. Built on the Lotus Sports Car Architecture with extruded aluminum chassis technology, the Emira has two chassis settings: Tour and Sports. The latter, very clearly, is for more spirited driving.
The interior doesn't break any new design ground but that was never the goal. It looks modern enough, featuring a flat-bottom steering wheel, 10.25-inch touchscreen, and a 12.3-inch driver's display. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, as are driver-assist systems like lane departure warning, rear cross-traffic alert, and adaptive cruise control.
We don't know US pricing just yet, but Lotus says the Emira will start at £60,000 in its UK home country. First Edition models will have the V6 and, next summer, the AMG turbo-four will be ready. The Emira has the potential to be an instant icon and we can't wait to get behind the wheel to see what it's got.