Lotus Eletre SUV Unveiled, More Lotus EVs Planned

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey
lotus eletre suv unveiled more lotus evs planned

A Lotus EV? If British electronics are involved, isn’t a Lotus EV going to be useful only as a paperweight?

I kid, I kid. Lotus, however, is dead serious — the Lotus Eletre is here, and the company calls it “the world’s first electric Hyper-SUV”.

Cutting through the press-release hyperbole, we see that Lotus is building the first of three planned new EVs, with plans to launch all three over the next three years.

Key specs include a power output that starts at 600 horsepower, a battery pack with a 100 kWh capacity, a 350kW charge time of 20 minutes that will give you 248 miles of range, and an overall maximum range of about 373 miles. Lotus also claims a 0-62 mph time of under 3 seconds.

The battery pack and electric motors are “skateboard” style, meaning they’re close to the ground to keep the center of gravity low. There are two electric motors, one driving the front wheels and one driving the rear. The suspension is five-link at the rear, and the car has a standard air suspension and damping control. Adjustable ride height, anti-roll bar, torque vectoring, and rear-axle steering are available.

Drive modes include an off-road mode.

The company will use Lidar as a base for advanced driving-assistance aids (ADAS), and carbon-fiber and aluminum (say it in a British accent, it’s fun) are used heavily in an effort to reduce weight.

Manufacturing will begin at an all-new plant in Wuhan, China later this year. Yes, that Wuhan.

The company’s release sure isn’t short of hyperbole. To wit: “A momentous point in our history” – Matt Windle, MD (Managing Director, we assume), Lotus Car.

“The Eletre, our Hyper-SUV, is for those who dare to look beyond the conventional and marks a turning point for our business and brand” – Qingfeng Feng, CEO, Group Lotus

I suppose Windle isn’t totally wrong — a Lotus SUV was once nigh unthinkable. But the world is changing, and Lotus is changing with it.

Other key features include a rear spoiler that deploys at speed, flush door handles, a choice between four or five seats, a fixed panoramic sunroof, wireless cell-phone charging, ambient lighting that communicates various things, such as level of battery charge; voice-recognition controls; digital and analog controls; premium audio; a thin gauge cluster; fold-flat infotainment screen; and a head-up display that uses augmented reality.

Various ADAS features, some of which can be updated over the air, include smart cruise control, collision-mitigation support, front and rear cross-traffic alert, traffic-sign information, lane-change assist, lane-keep aid with lane-departure warning and prevention, and child-presence detection.

A Lotus SUV. We’ve lived to see the day.

[Images: Lotus]

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  • Lightspeed Lightspeed on Mar 30, 2022

    Beautiful interior, some extremely clever engineering worthy of the Lotus name. But, wrapped in an SUV form factor. The problem with SUVs is that it's very difficult to tell a $250,000 one from a $45,000 one out in the world. They all have the same envelope shape, the same hard-points the same length of overhangs.

  • Theflyersfan Theflyersfan on Mar 31, 2022

    If, when walking up to the Lotus, the remote trunk release on the key fob takes four extra pushes on the button to open and then you load some food in the trunk that will get cooked by the engine nearby on your short drive home, and then you must literally crouch and hop over a foot wide sill into a too small seat all the while hoping the car will start and when it does, it takes five minutes of going through cryptic menus to do a simple thing and then the car gets hotter because the A/C has gone on holiday and the check engine light comes on again...If none of that happens with your new Lotus, then it's not a real Lotus. Their new motto: Lotus. We weed out the weak. I want to imagine a crossover Exige. Like everyone else, jack it up a few inches and add some black plastic trim. But keep it Lotus-like. Racing seats that cause back pain after 30 minutes. Buttons that control critical things like ignition buried between the seats somewhere. A door sill so high and wide that women with short skirts on have to be extra careful. Light fiberglass, plastic windows, and still powered by a Corolla engine. Be different Lotus. You have all of the time in the past.

  • Tassos I also want one of the idiots who support the ban to explain to me how it will work.Suppose sometime (2035 or later) you cannot buy a new ICE vehicle in the UK.Q1: Will this lead to a ICE fleet resembling that of CUBA, with 100 year old '56 Chevys eventually? (in that case, just calculate the horrible extra pollution due to keeping 100 year old cars on the road)Q2: Will people be able to buy PARTS for their old cars FOREVER?Q3: Will people be allowed to jump across the Channel and buy a nice ICE in France, Germany (who makes the best cars anyway), or any place else that still sells them, and then use it in the UK?
  • Tassos Bans are ridiculous and undemocratic and smell of Middle Ages and the Inquisition. Even 2035 is hardly any better than 2030.The ALMIGHTY CONSUMER should decide, not... CARB, preferably WITHOUT the Government messing with the playing field.And if the usual clueless idiots read this and offer the tired "But Government subsidizes the oil industry too", will they EVER learn that those MINISCULE (compared to the TRILLIONS of $ size of this industry) subsidies were designed to help the SMALL Oil producers defend themselves against the "Big Oil" multinationals. Ask ANY major Oil co CEO and he will gladly tell you that you can take those tiny subsidies and shove them.
  • Dusterdude The suppliers can ask for concessions, but I wouldn’t hold my breath . With the UAW they are ultimately bound to negotiate with them. However, with suppliers , they could always find another supplier ( which in some cases would be difficult, but not impossible)
  • AMcA Phoenix. Awful. The roads are huge and wide, with dedicated lanes for turning, always. Requires no attention to what you're doing. The roads are idiot proofed, so all the idiots drive - they have no choice, because everything is so spread out.
  • Leonard Ostrander Pet peeve: Drivers who swerve to the left to make a right turn and vice versa. They take up as much space as possible for as long as possible as though they're driving trailer trucks or school busses. It's a Kia people, not a Kenworth! Oh, and use your turn signals if you ever figure out where you're going.