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jonwat

Lotus 'plans to build V8 engine'

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Guest surferphil

Throwing loads of power in a car at the expense of handling, just seems so German and although the market is big for powerful German cars (Very big), it is also very well covered by the German brands BMW, Audi, Merc and Porsche.

If Proton want to compete with 'Lots Of Torque Usually Sideways' then they should create a new brand and lotus can design/engineer for it.

If the prejudice is strong for big torque figures and raw power, then the prejudice may well be strong against Lotus as a brand.

Lotus sold cars that handled well, weighed the same as a 3 door hatchback and went really fast. If they want to sell more, then create a full range of cars.

I doo see a market for V8 power, in a top end luxury car or a super car, but I don't think Lotus should base all their product with that type of market.

To do what Proton are doing, in my view, is to not understand what Lotus cars is and what potential they have. Why go after Porsche or Ferrari, to look like an immitator.

They should do their own thing and spend some money on good marketing, that's what sells cars. :getmecoat:

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Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

IIRC Lotus developed the V8 for the "classic" Esprit specifically to boost U.S. sales (read "marketing"). The question seems to be, as Simon alludes to above, just when will the U.S. frame of mind with regard to traditional V8 powered vehicles transition sufficiently to a desire for less cylinders, smaller displacement, more fuel efficient, yet technologically tricked out engines developing equivalent (or greater) horsepower. These engines already exist to some extent, but the psychology required to strongly want them installed in highly expensive supercars isn't quite there yet, IMO. People's needs, desires, and expectations regarding the purchase of automobiles change slowly, for the most part. But change they do. As I pulled up to the drive through window of my local bank today, a Tesla pulled up in the next lane over.

The "new" Esprit (if it enjoys a long run) will eventually evolve towards an electric version. Will it jump directly from a V8/V10 to electric, or transition via a V6 (or even a hybrid)? Who can say? I'm not convinced that even Lotus know at this point. There will come a time when our current debate about the number of holes in the lump will become a part of arcane automotive history studied only by the truly curious.


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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Guest surferphil

I think time and marketing could change the perception. Are the people with the old school philosophy the same people who Lotus want to sell to? or is there an untapped market for 'clever' power?

If Lotus became the brand for clever faster cars, that handle better, would anyone argue it's inferior, because it has less cylinders?

I am pretty sure the new wave is always up against the old school and always wins. But I am not American and don't know that market. I think you are right, times are changing. Lotus tend not to lead the way so much as make cars and hope they sell.

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How well is Porsche, especially their top flight models, regarded in the US? From a non-resident, they seem popular or are they regarded by most buyers of "fast" cars as quirky, small engined, euro/german weirdos.

Are they of the aspirational, poster material stuff or it that still the domain of Ferrari, Lamborgini, Aston Martin etc.

Edited by DanR

DanR

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How well is Porsche, especially their top flight models, regarded in the US? From a non-resident, they seem popular or are they regarded by most buyers of "fast" cars as quirky, small engined, euro/german weirdos.

I dunno, coming from a Lotus viewpoint I always thought of them as VW's on steroids devil.gif

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How well is Porsche, especially their top flight models, regarded in the US? From a non-resident, they seem popular or are they regarded by most buyers of "fast" cars as quirky, small engined, euro/german weirdos.

I dunno, coming from a Lotus viewpoint I always thought of them as VW's on steroids devil.gif

...and their top of the range Beetle still has the engine in the wrong place... someone should tell them! whistle.gif


Currently having an illicit affair with another marque, be back in the fold one day... B-)

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It does surprisingly well for it though, there's no denying that!


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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It does surprisingly well, as you assuredly know your immenseness, because several decades of iterative "tweaking" of the suspension geometry, and the use of modern electronic aids (ABS, traction control, etc.) have effectively defeated the historical foibles of a rear mounted engine. They have become nearly idiot proof as a consequence.

To answer Danny's question, they sell very well in the US. I once read (admittedly some time ago) that fully half of the Porsche's made are sold in the US, and half of those go specifically to the state of California! They are considered (as you might expect) a rich man's toy. Whether on not the type of individuals who purchase them here are to be considered as "enthusiasts" or "posers" is another issue altogether. The fact that they are flat sixes seems to have no effect at all on their popularity for those that can afford them. But I don't think that anyone in the US would classify them as a full on supercar--though the 911 Turbo is highly respected (as it should be, porker jokes aside). They are most likely acquired to "make a statement," rather than to be flogged at 10 10ths on a regular basis.

Ferraris and Lambos, on the other hand, are always perceived as supercars, and the province of the uber wealthy. Plunking down $200,000 USD or more for an automobile is not for the faint of heart! The distinctive sounds emmanating from beaucoup clyinder powerplants is part and parcel of the image being projected. These aural porn exhaust notes cause one to look up from whatever task your were performing, and can only be generated by V8's or larger. My apologies, but V6's (at whatever RPM's) just do not command the same sort of attention. Even the easily recognizable sound of a Porsche simply does not compare.

"Foolish" traditions die hard. Whether on not Lotus should continue in such footsteps remains open to debate, which is why we are currently on page four.:D


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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Hum, how much would developing a brand new engine cost? How long would it take ? Can they make a business case for it if they don't manage to sell the design to other OEM!

Their last shot at the V8 almost had the company going bankrupt!The engine was not so much the problem the gearbox was often incriminated if I remember well! I remember people saying that Lotus would not do this kind of things anymore without support from big manufacturer! I don't think Proton needs a big V8!

I'm anticipating delays in the production of the Esprit now! No way they can develop a brand new engine and put decent mileage on it before 2012!

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Even though being a full blooded, bull headed kraut,welcome.gif I never liked Porsches as I also consider them a "flattened Beetle" design wise. (no wonder, both got the same midwife)hrhr.gif

I must say though that they deserve where they are, due to their perseverance and their strictly followed company philosophy.

I don't know of any other car maker which is able to make just one model always look different yet exciting and still keep the traditional design path.

Same goes for the engines. 6 Cylinder flat NA or Turbo. ( remember, all other experiments were not really successull, see 928)

Such always pays !!

For Lotus the same is true. They need to stick to their philosophy and their heritage

Don't try to become somebody who you can't be and who your friends and fans don't want you to be.

There is no need for mega displacements and a gazillion cylinders.

Just make it a Lotus, that is all it takes

Stefan


Mind if I cut in ?

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Breaking new - The Esprit WILL be powered by an in house V8. Press announcement will be in a couple of weeks but it's been confirmed :D


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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Yeahaw !..... I´m excited.

Looking out for further news updates !


1996 Esprit V8, 1998 Esprit V8 GT, 1999 Esprit S350 #002 (Esprit GT1 replica project), 1996 Esprit V8 GT1 (chassis 114-001), 1992 Lotus Omega (927E), 1999 Esprit V8SE, 1999 Esprit S350 #032, 1995 Esprit S4s, 1999 Esprit V8 GT (ex-5th Gear project), 1999 Esprit V8SE ('02 rear)

1999 S350 #002 Esprit GT1 replica

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If they can get a new engine in a new car to market in less than 24 months, that will be awesome.

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Guest surferphil

With this and the news about the Elise today I would say things are looking very bright indeed

That is good news! :thumbsup:

All they have to do is make a good looking one! and sort out their brand 'creative', what happened to the beauty?

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I can even now see Mr Sekinger licking his lips at the prospect of a common bolt pattern for the engine mounts on the new V8.:bounce:

Memo to Dany: Call Bernie about replacing that dated Mercedes "safety car" with The New Esprit at the Austin inaugural U.S. Grand Prix in 2012. Contact Mr Heath about the use of his driveway for the official unveiling of the car, just prior to the race. :welcome:


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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In the 1970s the fuel price / crisis killed the big V8s

We are now approaching the £7 gallon, and Lotus are designing a big engine. Hope someone has a crystal ball

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In the 1970s the fuel price / crisis killed the big V8s

We are now approaching the £7 gallon, and Lotus are designing a big engine. Hope someone has a crystal ball

Simon

V8 does not neccessarily mean BIG.

How about a tasty 2.8 to 3.2L V8, twin turbo garnished with all the other tech goodies of today ?

There you'll have power, lightness and probably a very beasty power plant that is far from the consumption you are fearing


Mind if I cut in ?

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I rather liked the idea of a nice reliable Lexus V8 (even though it doesn't have the status or perceived value). The idea of Lotus building another engine fills me with horror, especially with only 2 years of development. Don't forget Lotus's history with building engines; the 900 series engine in the Jenson Healey and we all know about the early V8's. I'm sure a Lotus engine will be good after a few years of production, it's just those first few years I worry about. Lotus should stick to doing what it does best, making the best handling cars in the world.

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Never heard of Lotus Engineering then? Hethel design and engineer power plants for many mainstream manufacturers.

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Well if thats the decision thats been taken I think it will be great if they can do it and do it well. Im sure they already have most of an engine designed around some where. :thumbsup:

On another point earlier in this thread it was pointed out the gearbox was more of a weak link than the engine, but from being here for about 3 years now I have to say although there is always talk of the week gearbox (esp the old citroen one) there seems to be many more threads with people with engine failures then gearbox failures. I know maintenace has a lot to do with it but all things being equal it looks to me the old lotus engine is the weakest link. Im sure Lotus will have learned from history.... :whistle:

Buddsy (ever optomistic) :animier:


 

"Belief is the enemy of knowing" - Crrow777

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The Elite (2nd one) was Chapman's answer to the then fuel crisis, but as someone pointed out to me at the time, if you can afford the car fuel consumption concerns are not top of your list. Powerful, good torque, compact, reliable, and reasonably economical to maintain. That's what I'd be looking for.

The highest horsepower produced in F1 if memory serves was from a 4cyl.

Mark's point is well made if engine and drive-train are such a forte of Lotus we might have seen a gearbox for the V8 Esprit to do it justice.


Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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Is there a list of Lotus designed engines besides the ones we all know? I can only think of the quad cam Corvette V8.


DanR

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Never heard of Lotus Engineering then? Hethel design and engineer power plants for many mainstream manufacturers.

Obviously. Lotus have successfully developed and enhanced a number of engines over the years. But that doesn't guarantee they can manufacture an engine from the ground up to the same levels of reliability as Toyota.

Time will tell and I maybe wrong, but I really don't want more fuel to the old Lotus adage.

But the decision has been made and I hope they can pull it off.

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An in house engine isn't necessarily from the ground up, it's just not a pretty much stock engine from another car. Why re-invent the wheel...


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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