I thought I would update this topic now that I have had the Ferrari for a couple of months, its a very interesting comparison with the Evora.
Obviously the Ferrari si nearly 20 years old whilst my last Evora was only 6 years old so that will affect some things especially the tech side of the car, but the cars are similar in many ways, let me try to set it out.
The Ferrari is obviously dated in this department, but in my opinion its starting to become a classic and is less fussy than the later cars. The Evora much more modern. I always thought the Evora looked a bit high at the back because the engine is mounted quite high, the Ferrari is sleeker as a result and about 10cm lower. Ferrari lights are dated compared with the Evora even though the Evora's aren't exactly state of the art.
This is where the Ferrari has many advantages, my car has leather everywhere, headliner, sun visors (suede on the inside) and this leather has worn really well. The 20 year old Ferrari has worn better than the Evoras I have had despite similar mileage. Everything inside the Ferrari feels premium (I am lucky I don't have sticky switches), whereas the Evora especially the 400's feel like a let down in this regard. The Ferrari has no squeaks or rattles at all, there was always something in my Evora's, not much, just enough to be irritating.
The Evora (MK1's at least) win hands down on seat comfort, although the Ferrari seats are not bad. The Evora also has things like heated seats, cruise control and trip computer that are absent in the Ferrari. The Ferrari does have electric seats and the instrumentation is better with oil temp and pressure gauges. The wipers are also better.
The Ferrari doesn't leak, the Evoras all has a slight drip onto the door air vent
Obviously no contest, the Ferrari engine is sublime, smooth for a V8 and intoxicating at 8000rpm, and despite what things say on paper, the Ferrari is noticeably faster than my S was and than the 400;s I have driven. You really notice it from 40mph upwards, no flat spots, not dying pf power, just a linear rush towards the horizon. However, the Ferrari engine is temperamental, it has to be warmed up, when cold its horrid and lumpy, you get occasional random slow down lights (I need new cat ECU's), and you need oven gloves to check the oil level. The Evora, always felt like it had a good engine and I liked its character, but it always felt like there was something missing, I can't put my finger on it though. My Evoras were totally reliable in the engine department, I suspect the Ferrari will be niggly.
My Ferrari is the F1 robotised manual with paddle shift. It is horrid in traffic jams but very good when driving hard. The IPS in the Evora was a much nicer thing to use and the bark on gear change was lovely, and i miss that with the Ferrari. The IPS always felt as if it was sapping a bit of power, the Ferrari does not give that feeling, it feels like a manual. Overall, the manual Evora is better than the F1 Ferrari and the IPS is better than both as a daily driver. The Ferrari has better chosen gear ratios.
Both are excellent in terms of stopping power., I found both my Evoras squirrelled a bit under heavy braking, the Ferrari doesn't. Both cars have similarly progressive pedals and both have great brake feel.
Handling and Ride
The big one! And its close, but the Evora has the edge overall. The Evora has slightly better feel and a more precise centre position, both load up nicely on turn in and the car goes exactly where you want it to go, in reality there is not much between them, but the Evora has a bit more grip and is a bit narrower so its easier to drive it fast, there are times when the Ferrari feels more edgy, I think the back will let go sooner than the Evora (same width tyres). At speed though you really notice the extra downforce the Ferrari has on fast sweeping corners. The lower CoG helps too.
Ride - well its obvious the Evora is superb, the Ferrari is firm and annoyingly firm in sport mode. The Ferrari corners flatter but is more wearing.
Overall the Ferrari feels more raw than the Evora despite the leather, thick carpets etc.
Consumables in the Ferrari are generally cheaper than the Evora, especially brakes and tyres (smaller diameter). Insurance on the Ferrari is cheaper. Then there are the buts.....
I am averaging 16mpg the Evora S was 22mpg
Servicing is a similar price with an Indy but there seems to be more to go wrong and it costs to get to the parts
Clutch needs doing more frequently, but costs less, until other things are found.....
Belts every 3 years will make that service about £400 more than the service when my S needed belts
Ball joints get used up faster than Evora arb bushes and cost quite a bit more
However, I found I spent quite a bit on irritating niggles with the Evoras I had, numerous A pillar trims, headlight lacquers, failed door locks, failed brake switch sensor, failed paddle. In many cases these things failed several times. The Ferrari just feels better put together in these respects, but only time will tell.
Living with it
Both cars get lots of attention, my Daytona Blue Evora S probably the most due to its colour. Both cars need wide parking spaces, I miss the reversing camera that the Evora had. Despite the fact the Ferrari has better all round visibility, its still a pain to park and you are very conscious of the F1 box slipping that expensive clutch.
The Evora can carry more stuff, thanks to the back seat, the Ferrari has more legroom, headroom and shoulder space. Its easier to get out of the Ferrari.
Both cars have average headlights.
I worry more about the Ferrari parked outside in all weathers even though it doesn't leak. This may be misplaced irrationality.
Ferrari are much more supportive of owners, even those that have old low value models. They have dedicated apps that can tell you thinks like original spec, service details etc, they offer free international breakdown cover and invite you to stuff. I have already had an invitation to drive the F8 Tributo (I did, what a great car that is), and to other events. I didn't hear anything from Lotus in 8 years of owning their cars.
But a Ferrari is a bit embarrassing too. When people ask you what you drive and you said a Lotus, they knew they were talking to an enthusiast, saying "a Ferrari", makes you sound like a rich git. (I am not rich).
So sorry to talk about an old Italian pony on a Lotus thread, but some people had asked me for the comparison.
In summary I loved the Evoras I had and I love the Ferrari, I would be happy with either. I do think that when it was new the Ferrari must have been incredible, 20 years on in performance terms it beats an Evora 400 and its nearly as good for handling and balance.