Lotus has taken the wraps off the Exige Sport 350 that comes with a substantial weight loss compared to the previous Exige S.
After taking the Elise to the gym, Lotus has done the same thing with the Exige that now tips the scales at 2,480 lbs (1,125 kg) in the new Sport 350 model. It’s 112 lbs (51 kg) lighter than the old Exige S and the weight loss was made possible by installing a lighter battery and lightweight engine mounts. It makes better use of sound insulation and comes with lighter HVAC pipework along with a louvered tailgate panel. It also has a lightweight center console featuring an exposed gearshift mechanism.
Motivation is provided by the familiar V6 3.5-liter supercharged engine with 345 hp (258 kW) and 295 lb-ft (400 Nm) of torque delivered to the road through a quicker and more precise manual transmission. It needs 3.9 seconds to cover the 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) sprint and will top out at 170 mph (274 km/h). Go for the optional six-speed auto, the sprint takes 3.8 seconds and top speed decreases to 162 mph (261 km/h).
The engineers at Lotus have also worked on the suspension by implementing firmer dampers and an updated geometry to enable more responsive handling. It also has a lowered center of gravity and all these upgrades have slashed 2.5 seconds from the lap time at Lotus’ test track compared to the Exige S. This new Sport 350 version will do the lap in 1 minute and 29.8 seconds, thus making it the first production Lotus to run the Hethel track in less than 1 minute and 30 seconds.
At an additional cost, you can go for the lightweight forged alloy wheels that shave off an extra 11 lbs (5 kg) or for the cross drilled and vented two-piece brake discs that cut weight by an additional 11 lbs (5 kg). If you order all the optional lightweight bits and pieces, the Lotus Exige Sport 350 will tip the scales at just 2,458 lbs (1,115 kg).
Optional goodies on the menu include an infotainment system, full carpet and sound insulation pack, air conditioning, and black or yellow four-piston calipers. The interior cabin can be had in leather or Alcantara, but you can also go for the Tartan theme as a throwback to the 1976 Lotus Esprit S1.
Lotus says the Exige Sport 350 will go on sale in February from $80,900 (€74,000) in Germany and will be followed a month later by a roadster version. These two will be available outside Europe, but not in North America.