You be the judge.
Niche manufacturers like Lotus love special editions. The latest one follows the Elise 250 and the Evora 400 and is based on the Exige Sport 350 that was revealed in Geneva. The Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition was created to celebrate 50 years of Lotus at Hethel, a small village in Norfolk, England. The small town was home to an airfield, presumably a remnant from the days of war, and in 1966 Lotus set up shop there. The location was perfect because the company was able to rework parts of the runway and access roads into a private test track.
This gave Lotus a great advantage with testing out it’s R&D and the performance results speak for themselves. The normal Exige 350 Sport is pretty damn wild which gave the automaker a good foundation for this special edition. Jean-Marc Gales, Lotus Group CEO, said of the car: “The Lotus Exige is the quickest point-to-point sports car on the road; nothing can match its levels of accessible performance and grip. It’s lightweight, responsive and exceedingly fast, with the purity expected of a Lotus. It is a real beast that needs taming but it won’t bite back. ” The Exige 350 Special Edition has seen 57 pounds chopped off thanks to the use of lightweight carbon fiber sport seats along with other choice mods.
A louvered tailgate panel, a lighter battery, lightweight engine mounts, a lightweight center console with exposed gearshift mechanism, lighter HVAC pipework and better use of sound insulation are what helped hurry along the car's diet. Aerodynamics have also been improved, helping the 3.5-liter 345-hp supercharged V6 take the Special Edition from a standstill to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds and onto a top speed of 170 mph. The only transmission choice is a six-speed manual. It’s also lapped the Hethel test track in 1:29.8 seconds, which sounds impressive even with no reference of other cars there. Like most Lotus models the Exige 350 Special Edition will be unavailable in the US.