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Emira Road Tests & Reviews


Bibs

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That’s exactly what Lotus want to get away from! They want soccer moms to ‘get’ Lotus just like how they feel all sporty in their Macan diesels right now. Losing a few diehards/anoraks would probably be seen as beneficial to their image these days!

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On the topic of gearshift, something I’ve noticed on both of my mk1 elises and my latest Exige, is the gearshift is quite sticky, tight and often awkward when brand new, but loosens up into a great gear change after giving it some “determined” shifts. My wife always said our shared Elise was noticeably better to drive every time I’d been out on my own for a pootle…

Given a few more hard miles of road tests, these Emiras would more than likely give a different experience.

I’m certainly looking forward to the i4 tests though, it should be quite a different beast with the different weight distribution, power delivery and gearbox.

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4 hours ago, jimichanga said:

Really with weight going up so should power. By detuning to leave room for faster models the Emira doesn’t look like the step forward it in performance it could have been and that seems to be coming across in the reviews. But keeping the price competitive was the priority and that worked when it came to orders.

I still think the Emira should have had adaptive dampers, imagine what Lotus could have done with that? Every Emira having both Tour and Sport chassis at the push of a button. Would have been brilliant. One day hopefully. Seems unreasonable to ask people to make the right decision for them without trying both set ups. Easy to arrange when you have your own test track too!

In terms of adding power - I certainly take your point that it's odd to have a step back from 410/430, and quite cynical in terms of marketing those numbers as more expensive, upgraded models. But to be fair, they've reached the limit of the manual gearbox fitted anyway, haven't they? The 410 IPS has more torque than the manual, for instance. So it seems unlikely they'll get beyond 430bhp.

The issue of adaptive dampers was addressed in Harry's video - apparently (if you can believe it), Gavan Kershaw said they couldn't get the right balance with adaptive dampers vs the Bilstein passive items. What I would say is this - my Evora NA on passive Bilsteins absolutely s--ts all over my i30N on adjustable dampers, whatever mode is chosen. Whether it's cornering balance or ride over rough surfaces, the i30N is not a patch on my Evora, ever.

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My point was wanting to see what Lotus could do with adaptive damping tech, as I don’t believe it has been done very well to date, although Ferraris ‘bumpy road mode’ does sound like something all high performance cars should have. Maybe there’s some reason that it doesn't work very well at the moment but I don’t believe the explanation given on Harry’s Garage, Emira was built to a cost, the £59,995 figure was crucial to its success and led to many more orders than adaptive damping or more bhp both of which would have added to the cost and pushed the price up.

Yes no one believed JMG about the 430bhp being the limit for the gearbox or that we’d never see a more powerful Exige. I really thought there would be an Exige Cup 440 or 450 but it wasn’t to be. Strongly suggests Emira Cup 430 as a swan song for the V6. Though I did hear from a very trusted source that they were planning to launch Emira at one point with 450bhp using the bigger Harrop TVS 1900 but obviously decided against it. But decision to scale car back was the right one going by the orders. Much as I would have liked it I can’t see a £100k 450bhp Emira selling out 2 years worth of production.

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I also don’t think adaptive damping is worth the cost at this price point. Lotus is trying to win more mainstream customers, rather than track day fetishists. These new owners might fiddle with the settings first time out and then just leave it untouched, so they may as well have just bought the setup they wanted in the first place.

Personally I wouldn’t want the complication. But then again, I’d rather have manually operated seats, so what do I know?

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I think you’re confusing manually adjustable dampers with electronic adaptive dampers. Irrelevant now but would have got me more interested in the Emira (also irrelevant!). Agree on manual seats especially in a Lotus.

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13 hours ago, Bibs said:

I think the only really negative review has been EVO who tracked the car which isn't meant for track use for most owners on the wrong tyres and then said a Porsche is better which they say about any car ever, even if it's not in the review! 

Other than that, most reviews including their mag review have actually been pretty good! 

I didnt think the Evo review was too bad, clearly a bit naughty tracking without the Cup tyres though

Interesting thing for me was their opinion that the sport suspension was good enough for everyday, when Harry Metcalf was of the opposite opinion

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1 hour ago, jimichanga said:

I think you’re confusing manually adjustable dampers with electronic adaptive dampers. Irrelevant now but would have got me more interested in the Emira (also irrelevant!). Agree on manual seats especially in a Lotus.

I’m talking about the electronic ones. Manually adjustable would be too hardcore for 99% of Emira customers. My old Ferrari has 3 setting electronic shockers. The differences between the 3 settings is negligible. Just another thing to go wrong.

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just in Porsche dealer getting Macan serviced and took opportunity to have a chat about lead times:

718 Cayman GTS - order book is open but 18 mth delivery and they expect it to be replaced with an electric model in that sort of timescale anyway - so when you get it, its already redundant.

Spyder verison - order book is closed

didn't bother asking about GT4

911 convertible - 12 month delivery

on all of them - you can get something that is essentially new , perhaps a few hundred miles at £20k over list price.

 

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construction and property consultants : My company

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I imagine the old chestnut applies that if you put up the money a ‘cancelled order’ will show up sooner than they first said. Porsche still using every trick in the book I couldn’t put up with the way they treat people but each to their own. I think I’d see the 718 GTS as more of an instant classic than instantly redundant if the replacement is electric but who has the patience to wait 18 months for one? All of this can only help Lotus if they get their act together on customer service.

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2 hours ago, TdM said:

I suspect they CAN get 450bhp out of it, I'm not sure they should. You could have got away with it in a special edition Evora/Exige with a stressed 'box that may have a shortened life but will probably last a good long while with the occasional failed item. You won't get away with that much edginess when you are shooting for more mainstream. They *have* to stay away from any reliability questions. That's what impacted Alfa's relaunch. Their initial batch of Giulia's had gremlins and pulled them straight back into the old stereotypes.

The most important thing for Lotus from a commercial proposition is to build trust in the brand so that mass market are happy to put their money on the high volume vehicles.

Very good point. It’s comical how many people still think they’re funny with the age old acronym “Lots Of Trouble, Usually Serious..”

The last thing Lotus need is to make it relevant again.

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18 hours ago, jimichanga said:

I don’t know how or why they are missing gears on track.

I agree. One factor might be that they just spend so little time using a manual gearbox in anger.

The most important review will be the 2000 miler coming up, and also my own on my way to Germany 😄

It will not take many of us too long to get used to it.

If it has an engine, I am there to thrash it.

My Emira Videos  |  Into Motorcycles? Motorcycle Channel

 

 

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16 hours ago, Gadzooks said:

The only conclusion I have drawn so far is that either factory QC is still not good enough and/or the cars put out to test have already had varying levels of abuse.

Nah, they have got those well sorted.

It is just a need/rush to get the cars in the journos hands in a timely manner ready for demo and delivery cars.

14 hours ago, 390ja said:

On the topic of gearshift, something I’ve noticed on both of my mk1 elises and my latest Exige, is the gearshift is quite sticky, tight and often awkward when brand new, but loosens up into a great gear change after giving it some “determined” shifts.

Is there a transmission/gearbox/whatever fluid/oil out there that improves this from the standard included?

If it has an engine, I am there to thrash it.

My Emira Videos  |  Into Motorcycles? Motorcycle Channel

 

 

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I believe careful and accurate use of any gearbox during the break in period is critical. Also something my Grandad passed on to me was to insist on changing the gear oil at the first service. Trouble is the flippers and those who want the latest it car don’t usually bother as they sell them on with 1000 miles and thrash them from day one to get their money’s worth. Most youtubers think running in is something you do in Nikes.

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16 minutes ago, Evotion said:

Nah, they have got those well sorted.

It is just a need/rush to get the cars in the journos hands in a timely manner ready for demo and delivery cars.

Is there a transmission/gearbox/whatever fluid/oil out there that improves this from the standard included?

WD40 on the linkage 👍 Seriously though, the gearbox in my Elise was the best I’ve experienced and far superior to the manual box in my 991S which was definitely the worst box I’ve experienced. Think that’s why over 90% choose a PDK transmission.

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Read most of the reviews and seen most of the vids. Hasn't damped my enthusiasm one bit for what i hope is a 20k a year daily.  If the gearbox is crap I'll just order an i4 and wait to replace. 

One thing I've not read is anything about service intervals, service costs, warranty etc ? anyone seen owt?

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I suspect lower rev limit is how they took 22bhp away from the Evora GT410 unit (416-394). Lots of talk of the Emira V6 fading at the top end of the rev range, that is something the 410 and upwards Evoras absolutely do not do as superchargers make more boost the higher they rev obviously.

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Had a go in the GT4 and very impressed to be honest but I've only got an S2 240 exige and I love it gearchange and all.

MT 90 improved it but its not great but I'm more liable to swap to an Emira than a porsche and I've been luckily enough to drive loads across the range 

 

IMG_20200308_103718933_HDR.jpg

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4 hours ago, Evotion said:

Is there a transmission/gearbox/whatever fluid/oil out there that improves this from the standard included?

Elbow grease..

Just plenty of quite unforgiving gear changes, the cars seem to love them.

 

that said, I haven’t kept one for over 20k miles yet…. 🤔

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20 hours ago, jimichanga said:

That’s exactly what Lotus want to get away from! They want soccer moms to ‘get’ Lotus just like how they feel all sporty in their Macan diesels right now. Losing a few diehards/anoraks would probably be seen as beneficial to their image these days!

Do they? Probably unrealistic to get that sort of market penetration.  More like aiming for those with some basic sport car awareness. Ie Porsche and F type buyers.  Your average Joe will not know what they are looking at when they see an Emira.  Just that it looks exotic

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4 hours ago, Cooper said:

The cross gate action in both my Evora and Exige S sucked.  On track, high G corner, forget about making a clean shift flat out.  I tracked both cars significantly.  I never had the issue on the road, by the way.  And the GT4 'box is light years ahead of the crud cable shift/Auris combo, its a beaut despite the long ratios and infallible on track.  

You know the only thing I really disliked about Porsche ownership, was perception.  I wouldn't be let out at junctions as much, and you wouldn't get fellow enthusiasts coming over to you at the pumps for a chat like you would in a Lotus.  You can see a bit of that in this thread. 

Back to the box of gears, I actually didn't expect Lotus to solve this issue (they've had over a decade to sort it).  The lower rev limit is a bit of a shame as 7k is tried and tested; and I wonder if the first few gears are torque limited as well, one of the reasons the likes of an Evora 400 doesn't feel as quick as it should.  

And yet, here I am, with my GT4 as much as sold and my early Emira order staying firm despite any reviews, despite tirades on here about Customer Service.  

I just find myself incredibly fortunate to be able to have my name down for a proper 3 pedal mid engine sports car, that looks utterly jaw-dropping, built by a company with real heritage, with a powertrain that is very much familiar (and one that I actually do like, despite the above).  Its very exciting times until the end of ICE, and I can't bloody wait for my Emira!

The reason people rant about the service, is because it's abysmal, and the single reason that much as I love my 390FE I would never ever buy another Lotus. Mine came with issues on delivery that went back to the dealer 3 times and eventually I had to have fixed, at my expense, by an independent. I do feel for new Lotus buyers in that if anything goes wrong, Lotus will ignore you and unless you live near B&C you face a long trip to a useless, clueless, incompetent main dealer. The two I've been to I'd never step foot in again, and now I'm faced with a 250 mile round trip to keep the warranty alive.

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1 hour ago, Matt W said:

The two I've been to I'd never step foot in again, and now I'm faced with a 250 mile round trip to keep the warranty alive.

No you are not! Why do people keep coming out with this crap?

It's been years since the law was changed on this. Whilst this was originally a result of the EU (Block Exemption Rules) it is still in force in the UK, and indeed, the UK Government is considering renewing the rules/law to continue to provide the protection.  https://www.gov.uk/cma-cases/motor-vehicle-block-exemption-regulation

 

As long as you can prove (receipts and stamps - get the independent to specifically list the make/part# of every part/fluid used to ensure it is as per OEM) that your car was serviced to the manufacturers specifications (including parts used and fluids as per mfrs recommendation ) then your warranty will remain valid and in force. 

So a good, reputable, established Lotus independent should be able to service your car for you and provided it is done to the correct schedule your warranty protection remains.

If you do require recall/warranty work to be done, then of course, Lotus can stipulate the "dealer" has to do it.

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Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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