Lotus Exige

From Lotus press: After an absence from the market place for 2 years, Lotus is reintroducing the Lotus Exige – a car that at the time revolutionised the hardcore sports coupé market despite being on sale for just over 18 months.

The first generation Exige was introduced to the world in early 2000 as a racecar for the road. Born out of the successful Lotus Sport Elise racecar, which was campaigned throughout Europe with such success in 2000 and 2001, the Exige was hand built in low numbers for a few markets around the world.

The second generation Exige, unveiled as a world debut at the Geneva Motorshow in 2004, takes the same racecar-for-the-road philosophy and applies it to the driver of today.

With phenomenal performance and handling, powered by an advanced 1.8 litre VVTL-i (Variable Valve Timing with Lift – intelligent) engine producing a maximum power output of 141 kW and 181 Nm of torque, the Exige sprints to 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds and 160 km/h in 13.2 seconds before reaching a top speed of 237 km/h.

Key to this phenomenal performance and handling is the total aerodynamic package (which gives 41.2 kg of downforce at 160 km/h - 19.3 kg: front and 21.9 kg: rear) and light weight, the latter made possible through innovative engineering and clever design; indeed the Exige weighs in at 875 kg - unladen with no options - giving a power to weight ratio of 161 kW/t and 4.56 kg/PS.

Being a true mid-engine sportscoupé, the high tech engine is located behind the cockpit and in front of the driven rear wheels. Power comes from the state-of-the-art 2ZZ-GE 1.8 litre 4 cylinder 16-valve VVTL-i (Variable Valve Timing and Lift-Intelligent) engine linked to the C64 six-speed gearbox. The engine and gearbox combination, sourced from Toyota, was chosen as the ideal engine for the Exige and perfect for the Lotus brand philosophies.

The lightweight engine, with a compact metal matrix composite alloy cylinder block has been subject to a rigorous testing and development programme which, as part of Lotus’ key federal Elise programme, has involved over half a million miles of testing in a wide range of extreme climate conditions from the Arctic Circle to the Arizona and Nevada deserts and at altitude in Colorado. This is in addition to Toyota’s world renowned development and testing programme that had already been applied to the engine prior to the installation in the Exige.

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