Speed, style and panache
In a celebration of style and lightweight performance, and helping mark the 50th anniversary of the company’s famous Hethel site, Lotus has revealed the latest addition to its collection: the exclusive Elise 250 Special Edition.
Based on the critically acclaimed Elise Cup 250 launched earlier this year, the new Lotus Elise 250 Special Edition offers an outstanding combination of performance and panache. With a supercharged 243-horsepower engine, a 0-60 mph (96 kph) time of 3.9 seconds, and a unique, hand-finished interior, it perfectly defines the quintessential British sportscar in this celebration year.
As an antidote to sterilized and staid modern cars, Lotus’ approach continues to deliver the purest, undiluted driving experience. Tipping the scales at just 899 kilograms, through the use of advanced materials including carbon fiber and aluminum, the Elise 250 Special Edition remains true to the company’s philosophy of “Light is Right” and is capable of humbling far more common, yet expensive, rivals.
Powered by a high-output, supercharged, 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, the Elise 250 Special Edition boasts 243 hp (246 PS) at 7,200 rpm and 250 Newton-meters of torque between 3,500 rpm and 5,500 rpm. This, along with the car’s 899-kg kerb weight, contributes to the impressive 270 hp/ton headline figure.
However, far from being solely performance orientated, the Elise 250 Special Edition is designed to appeal aesthetically as well as dynamically. A selection of beautifully finished carbon-fiber components come as standard, including a front splitter, rear wing, tailgate and front access panel, all giving the car considerable kerb appeal.
The new Elise is the perfect blend of both style and substance. As befitting a hand-built sports car from one of the world’s most famous marques, it’s beautifully detailed and conceived as a tribute to one of countless Lotus fans’ favorite cars. The Lotus Elan, launched in 1963, established itself as one of the icons of 60’s motoring and even became a star of screen in hit TV shows of the time, including the classic series “The Avengers.”
Draped in a composite body and finished in one of four of the firm’s favorite colors, the Elise 250 Special Edition is limited to just 50 examples. With a high specification as standard, it combines traditional British craftsmanship with the best of contemporary design. From the hand-made carbon components, to the hand-finished leather seats, it sets the benchmark for exclusive sports cars.
The Elise 250 Special Edition is available in choice of four colors, each a long-standing favorite over the last 50 years. Classic metallic blue, red, yellow and white finishes are all complemented by ultralight forged wheels in silver or black as an option. An optional carbon fiber hardtop roof panel is also available.
The same attention to detail continues inside, with the carbon-fiber sports seats finished in either dark blue or dark grey leather, and stitched with a choice of contrasting colors. The car’s door trim is afforded the same hand-stitched finish.
At home on the track
Despite its sophistication, the Elise 250 Special Edition is just at home on the track as it is on Bond Street. The new car laps the company’s Hethel test circuit in 1 minute 34 seconds, the fastest recorded time for a production road-going Elise. The car carries over the same suspension and braking components from the Elise Cup 250, including Bilstein sports dampers and Eibach coaxial coil springs and double wishbone suspension. AP Racing twin-piston front calipers, and Brembo single-piston rear calipers work in conjunction with the track-tuned anti-lock braking system.
Fitted with a slick, six-speed manual gearbox, the Elise 250 Special Edition includes an Electronic Differential Lock as standard to give better traction and faster exit speeds when cornering.
The new Elise also features driver selectable ESP modes, providing Sport and Race settings. Proportionally increasing throttle response, lowering traction slip thresholds and removing understeer recognition, it allows enhanced control before the system intervenes.
An integrated in-car entertainment system can also be specified, including iPod connectivity and Bluetooth functionality, along with air conditioning, cruise control, auxiliary driving lights, full carpets, floor mats and enhanced sound insulation.
The new Elise 250 Special Edition can also be personalized through the Lotus Exclusive program. Combining craftsmanship with modern design, the service inspires customers to spend time tailoring the character of their Lotus with a comprehensive array of options to suit any budget.