Lotus Management on the Future of Lotus (GGLC Exclusive Interviews)

Cross-posting the interviews I conducted for the GGLC at the LA Auto Show and originally posted on the GGLC blog:

GGLC attended the North America launch of the new Lotus range at the LA Auto Show and got a chance to speak to senior management about their plans for Lotus and the challenges in launching 5 new cars in a short span of time. Short descriptions of the interviews and their major points are below but we recommend you watch the actual videos to get a sense about the future direction of Lotus

First up we spoke to Dany Bahar, the CEO of Group Lotus about his vision for the future of the company and why they were launching so many cars in such a short timeframe. Major points that he confirmed were:

  • Not all cars will be going to aluminium skins, the Elise will remain a composite body
  • Motorsports activities will include Evora GT4, Evora GT2, IndyCar (bespoke engine and aero)
  • Simultaneous worldwide launch with an intended volume of 6-7000 cars per year

Next up was Donato Coco, Head of Lotus Design and the man behind the 5 cars on display. He spoke to us about the challenges in designing iconic cars like the Esprit as well as the goals for the design language for the Lotus range. Our favorite quite here was that the design for the new front ends has been inspired by the original Lotus Seven and if you look at the cars (especially the Elise) it does actually come through.

Finally we spoke to Wolf Zimmermann, CTO of Lotus about the challenges in rapidly developing 5 new cars. This was a great interview with reasons behind various decisions and we recommend you watch the whole video below. Significant points include:

  • Aluminium bodies are required because composite cannot provide the required quality and shapes for the new designs
  • Engines are not yet confirmed but will be decided in the next few months
  • VVA architecture and manufacturing will have to be upgraded to meet targets
  • Lotus Engineering is already involved in some of the design processes

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