If the Evija is out of reach, this is the perfect alternative.
Teased one last time a couple of days ago, the all-new Lotus Emira has finally been fully revealed. The Emira is notable as the last ever combustion-powered car from Lotus before the brand embarks on the next step in its electrification journey. There will be two engine choices - a new 2.0-liter turbo-four from AMG and a 3.5-liter supercharged V6 from the Exige and Evora. This mid-engined sports car certainly looks the part. It's a much sleeker prospect than the brand's outgoing sports cars but adheres to the same philosophy of visceral driving dynamics made possible by lightweight construction.
The Emira is the first sports car from the brand to feature the same design language introduced by the Evija hypercar. Perhaps most striking are the ideal proportions - it doesn't appear to be an inch longer, taller, or wider than it should be.
"The Emira captures the visual drama of an exotic supercar, with great proportions, wide footprint and a cabin that sits low down between muscular haunches," said Russell Carr, Lotus Design Director. Details like the vertical LED headlamps, exit vents on the hood to enhance aerodynamics, and the sculpted doors are as attractive in isolation as they are in concert with each other.
The rear features the large LOTUS wordmark between the taillights and above the dual tailpipes, whereas the body-color panel is a nod to the Evija. 20-inch wheels wrapped in Goodyear Eagle F1 Supersport tires are standard but the Lotus Drivers Pack will substitute these for Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. Available colors include Shadow Grey, Hethel Yellow, Magma Red, and the launch color of Seneca Blue.
Beneath the attractive new skin, the Emira is built on the Lotus Sports Car Architecture featuring bonded extruded aluminum chassis technology. There are two chassis/suspension settings: Tour and Sports. The latter stiffens things up while Tour is suited for everyday use. The Emira's lightest target weight is 3,097 pounds.
"The Emira has a wider track than any recent Lotus car, enhancing stability, delivering exceptional road-holding and the sensation of a very low center of gravity," said Gavan Kershaw, Director of Vehicle Attributes.
The less powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine from AMG produces 360 horsepower. Lotus says it has been tuned by in-house Hethel engineers for specific use in this car. The 3.5-liter supercharged V6 from Toyota delivers 400 hp and Lotus quotes a maximum torque output of 317 lb-ft. Lotus says that manual, automatic, and dual-clutch transmissions will be on offer to ensure the global appeal of the Emira. The company did not share much detail about the transmissions but since the DCT is AMG-derived, it could be an eight-speeder such as the one used for the CLA 45.
Performance is strong. Lotus claims a 0-62 mph time of under 4.5 seconds and a top speed of up to 180 mph, figures that presumably pertain to the V6 with the automatic or dual-clutch.
Inside, the Lotus Emira puts the focus on the driver with a sporty and fairly straightforward layout. The shift lever on manual models is said to be a throwback to the legendary Esprit, and on V6 manuals, the gear linkage is partially exposed. Other sporty touches include a flat-bottomed steering wheel and the red cover above the engine start/stop button.
This is a thoroughly modern sports car, though, not some stripped-out racer. The 10.25-inch central touchscreen is complemented by a 12.3-inch digital driver's display, while both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are included. Driver aids that are available include adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane change assist, and rear cross traffic alert.
Lotus wanted this to be a sports car you could comfortably use every day and that's why there is sufficient space for even taller occupants.
The glass area has been specifically designed to ensure that visibility isn't obscured as it would be in some other high-performance cars. There are cupholders, well-sized door bins, space behind the rear seats (7.3 cubic feet), as well as a trunk at the back of the engine (5.3 cubes). Lotus promises both comfort and excellent lateral support from the seats, which are available with 12-way power-adjustability.
While US-specific pricing has yet to be revealed, the new Emira will start at less than £60,000 ($83,092 at current rates) in the United Kingdom. Initially, limited First Edition models with the V6 engine will be available. From summer 2022, versions powered by the AMG-sourced four-pot will debut, while first customer deliveries are scheduled from next spring. The Emira's public debut will take place at this weekend's Goodwood Festival of Speed.
"The Emira is a game-changer for Lotus," said Matt Windle, Managing Director at Lotus Cars. "It stands as a beacon of everything we have achieved to date in the transformation of the business, the embodiment of our progress."