By on August 4, 2015


*Unless it isn’t.

According to Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales, the next-generation lightweight Lotus two-seater sports car has a future in the United States around 2020 — that is, if Lotus is still around then.

The chief executive spoke to Automotive News and said the Elise could be adapted to the U.S. market’s famously fussy safety regulations, which eventually killed the current-generation Elise in 2011 in the States.

This isn’t the first time Lotus has teased us. Remember the Esprit (pictured above) that was definitely going to be a thing? Yeah, um, I guess that one is still in the mail, huh?

Although, to be fair, Gales and the new Lotus team brought over the Evora 400 for the U.S. market and conquered all of our fun safety regulations, which was a resurrection for the brand. Allegedly the Evora Roadster will make its way to the U.S. soon, too.

Gales said adapting the current Elise to meet safety standards would add a whole Midwesterner to the weight of the car.

“We’d need smart airbags, plus side airbags and to change the whole front crash structure. It would add 100 kg (220 pounds),” he told Automotive News.

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5 Comments on “Lotus is Definitely*, Absolutely*, Positively* Bringing Elise to US*...”

  • avatar

    This is pure conjecture. In the short term, Lotus has bet the ranch on the new Evora. Assuming the 400 is successful, the next big bet is their SUV. If it is successful in China, I would expect the SUV to be the next car offered in the States. Then Lotus will take a page out of the Porsche playbook and offer as many variations of both cars as they can sell.

    Just don’t see Lotus having the resources to devote much to the Elise. Porsche will be coming out with new models for the 911 and Cayman/Boxster next year and Lotus will be forced to further update the 400 is 3 years, the 2020 MY at the latest. And that will have to be a new model, not a revision of the existing model

  • avatar

    If Lotus builds that car spacious enough for me to drive comfortably, it would sell. Gull Wing, Lambo or Falcon doors would be nice too. Twin turbo a V8 or V6 or both…

    That looks like a few easy mods: skirt kit, air wing…you’d have a poor-man’s Aventador.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    Building large ponderous cars for large ponderous people is not the Lotus way. The ideal Lotus would have zero mass and occupy zero volume, and somehow do the same to the driver who entered it.

  • avatar

    I hope so. I still eye a used Evora or Elise.

  • avatar

    Just imagining how much nicer this would’ve been to read without all the SuperSnark 2.0 writing. And that title is just a hot mess.

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