The track-only model cuts a serious amount of weight to boost performance over its road-going sibling.

The talented engineers from Hethel have a healthy obsession for removing as much weight as possible from both their road and race cars. Case in point, they’ve managed to find a way to make the recently introduced Exige Sport 380 even lighter. At 1,110 kilograms (2,447 pounds), the road-legal version wasn’t exactly fat to begin with, but now its track-only counterpart has managed to drop below the 1,000-kg mark. Without any fluids in it, the Exige Race 380 tips the scales at a mere 998 kg (2,200 lbs). Go for the optional titanium exhaust system and the weight will drop by a further 10 kg (22 lbs).

Motivation is provided by the same Toyota-derived supercharged 3.5-liter V6 engine with 380 horsepower (hence the model’s name) and 410 Newton-meters (302 pound-feet) of torque as in the Exige Sport 380. While the latter gets a six-speed manual gearbox and an optional six-speed auto, the Exige Race 380 is fitted with an Xtrac six-speed sequential transmission. It also benefits from a cassette-type limited slip differential and features an oil cooler.

Let’s talk performance. The sprint from 0 to 60 mph (96 kph) takes just 3.2 seconds, so it’s three tenths of a second quicker than the more docile road car. If you’re still not impressed, Lotus says the car will do a lap of the company’s Hethel track in 1 minute and 23.5 seconds, or 1.5s faster than the Exige Cup R.

Lotus Exige Sport 380
Lotus Exige Race 380

“Thanks to some careful revisions,” the new track toy from Norfolk will generate 240 kg (529 lbs) of downforce at 170 mph (273 kph). It was possible to achieve this performance by installing vents at the front and in the rear bumper to diminish the pressure around the wheels. In addition, a rear-mounted grille boosts air circulation through the engine bay. Lotus has also developed a new front splitter to reduce pressure beneath the car.

Rounding off the upgrades are the ultra-light forged 17-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, AP Racing brakes with forged four-piston calipers, along with a diffuser and bigger rear wing optimizing air flow at the back.

Once you’re inside the thoroughbred race car, you’ll be greeted by a color TFT instrument cluster providing a wide variety of customization screen options. You can even spend more for a professional data analysis software if the standard track data logger and GPS won’t cut it. Without any options, the Exige Race 380 costs £99,500 (about $122,100 / €114,762) before value added tax. Lotus is already taking orders.

Source: Lotus

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