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Lotus vs Lotus legal actions starts Mon. 24.Jan - Page 15 - Motorsport & Trackdays - The Lotus Forums Jump to content


Lotus vs Lotus legal actions starts Mon. 24.Jan


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DB never ever said he didn't like the current customer base, that's what you guys have concluded from reading the twisted media reports.

We all get that he wants to move part of the product range up market, he also wants to cater for the current customer base. You guys all have a part to play in shaping the future of Lotus road cars!

Instead of jumping on the hate bandwagon, give your feedback to the guys at GL. The feedback has already changed DB mind on the Elan, the customer base pointed out it was to expensive , styled closely to the Esprit, the Elan name is associated with a front engined car. The Elan is on hold as a result, allowing the Evora to take its place in the future product lineup.

The article is another twisted piece of reporting, for a start the Elise chassis is going nowhere. I have heard that GL have plans for the chassis, anyone's guess at what it could be?

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I'm up at the factory (again) in the next 2 weeks to discuss them starting a heritage parts service, bringing more obsolete parts back to life. Reporters and writers have their own agenda and often their own thoughts and ideas, don't take them as gospel as more often than not, they aren't.

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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Well as to the the AROnline live article being total rubbish: I don't know how things are in the UK, but in the US if enough of what he said could be proven untrue (and damaging to the business or personal reputations) than a major lawsuit would definitely ensue with substantial financial and other pain for the publication if they lost. (and I would encourage Group Lotus to do so if that is the case). On the other hand if they remain silent on this article and not take any action that may say volumes.

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In an Alternative Universe, far far away...

Reporter: Pardon me, sir. I seem to have lost my way. I'm looking for the nearest Lotus dealership. I've been assigned by Total Fabrication Motoring News to cover the new Lotus lineup. Can you assist me?

Man on steet: Why, of course. Continue straight on, right round at the second block. You'll have no trouble spotting it. It's the building with the guilded gold pillars and champagne fountain in the forecourt. Quite a posh layout indeed.

Reporter: Thanks, mate. (continues on, arrives at dealership, encounters sales representative dressed in tuxedo)

Sales rep: Good day, sir. In the market for a fine automobile? May I show you our current offerings? Naturally, we'll need to see some form of verification of your present earnings before we proceed. Management policy I'm afraid. Too many, how shall I put it delicately, "lower eschelon" clientele sniffing about. Did you happen to bring a copy of last year's tax return with you?

Reporter: 'Fraid not. Simply looking for a good story. Keeps food on the family table you know. A little embellishment goes a long way. Part of the journalistic trade methodology. Keeps my editor happy. He loves a good automotive yarn. Gives me a bonus whenever I come up with another outrageously preposterous fable.

Sales rep: Well now, I think we can accept the prospect of said bonus as an entry level ticket that might permit a brief viewing of our line. Follow me inside, perhaps you might arrange your employer to fax us a copy of your most recent statement. (both gentlemen enter the showroom floor) Ah! Allow me to introduce you to Mr Bahar, the originator of our current vision for the future.

Dany: Welcome, sir. Feast your eyes on the world's finest selection of enormously expensive, but fun to drive performance excellence. May I show you the new Esprit? 700 horsepower of paddle shifting motoring pleasure at your beck and call, available for a mere 200,000 pounds sterling. A true notification to the world that you have arrived.

Reporter: May I sit in it?

Dany: Perhaps. Are those fresh clothes? You look as if you've been traveling all day. It might be best for me to drape a layer of linen protection over the Connolly leather before you alight within the cabin. I'll be right back. Feel free to imbibe an Evian while I'm away. If your credentials come through in time, we might even permit you a taste of our Mouton Rothschild.

Sales rep: Interesting chap, no? Turned the company entirely around in the span of two years. Eventually bought out Air Asia in the process, and now runs Lotus Airways for sport. All first class seating, caviar hors' devours, the lot.

Reporter: Why am I not surprised?

(Dany returns)

Dany: Right. I'm back, but with a bit of bad news, chap. Seems our research has indicated that you don't exactly fit our preferred customer profile, and we're going to have to ask you to depart the premises immediately. You do understand our policy in these matters, do you not?

Reporter: Well, if didn't before, I most certainly do now. Good day to you, sir. I'll try my best not to let the door bugger my backside on the way out. (exits building)

Sales rep: (displaying Cheshire cat grin) Don't you just love payback, Mr. Bahar?

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

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... the Elan name is associated with a front engined car.

While the M100 is a fine car, I would say that, for most people, the Elan name is associated with the rear-drive jewel of the 60's.

Here's something I read the other day. "Ask any fervent fan...about the present line from Lotus and he just might spit on your eye. That's how dramatic the switch in the company's products has been..."

Taken from an article in Road and Track written in February 1977, writing about the M50 Elite, the Eclat and Esprit line--up.

Over here, many Lotus dealers also sell upmarket cars like Bentley and Lamborghini so they are well-aligned to aim for that market.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE

 

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Am not convinced that name recycling has worked for Lotus up to now, with every model not being quite as good as the historic version. The best name with the best heritage is Elite, but nobody will hold the 1970s version up as the paragon of Lotus virtue

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I switched off thinking that article had any credibility as soon as it mentioned flogging the Elise manfacturing rights to Caterham. What complete tosh.

That's exactly what I thought and stopped reading at that indulgent fantasy. :thumbdown:

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... the Elan name is associated with a front engined car.

While the M100 is a fine car, I would say that, for most people, the Elan name is associated with the rear-drive jewel of the 60's.

USAndretti42 - Both Elans were front engined. I thinks that's what bffd meant by "front engined".

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Or maybe we have our own opinions.

I agree Graham. GL wouldn't sell the rights to produce the Elise. Not in a million years. And to a TF owned company not in a Gazillion years.

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USAndretti42 - Both Elans were front engined. I thinks that's what bffd meant by "front engined".

You are dead right. I misread the original post thinking it said "front-drive." And I hadn't even been drinking.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE

 

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After reading the judges findings on the case I have to say I was very impressed with his understanding of Lotus / Team Lotus history and as such delivered a fair judgement.

What surprises me is that Group Lotus under Mr.Bahars leadership bought such a case to court at all, as surely an world renouned marketing guru such as Mr.Bahar would have known that Group Lotus had never competed in single seater circuit racing nor had they owned the rights to the "Team Lotus" name or the roundel carrying the name.

As Mr.Bahar once worked in a marketing capacity for Ferrari, I am reasonably sure that he would have known that Scuderia Ferrari Spa and Ferrari Spa are different companies, Scuderia Ferrari Spa race in F1 and design and construct single seater racing cars and Ferrari Spa design , construct and build road cars.

As Tony Kimberley has pointed out on more than one occasion, Group Lotus failed to procure the Team Lotus name and logo which historically is the true representation of Lotus in Formula One, as Scuderia Ferrari is of Ferrari.

So Group Lotus have their decal on the front of the Renault and Team Lotus have their own chassis designed and produced in house by themselves.

Even though the Renault sponsored by Group Lotus effort is producing more attractive results as far as finishing positions go, the Team Lotus effort is more to the history of Lotus in Formula 1 , designing ,building their own chassis in Norfolk, England.

I actually think the court case has added value to the Team Lotus brand, in a kind of David (Tony Fernandes) vs Goliath (Dany Bahar, Group Lotus and Proton) and taken away value (and credability) from the Lotus brand.

Thank god Dany Bahar is not an automotive engineer or god only knows how cocked up the handling would be of the new forthcoming Lotus Esprit (If it gets built at all)!

Edited by billy fish
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Who has the upper hand now? Dany, certainly not, Tony, well if he doesn't have the upper hand than what does he have! He put Group on the defensive and Dany and his PR crew have to extinguish fires one after the other.

I remember Claudio Berro inititial plan: not to join F1 before a few years I think Dany and Claudio must be biting it right now!

They have a good title 7 year sponsorship with a very able team but will never be able to make full use of it!

Forget right now any plan to change team/car name and they can't get out of this deal (not that they want to).

They have spent a few million pound in litigation for a very hollow victory on merchandising.

Their Funding that originally was announced 700M GBP has melted to 490M GBP.

They should have stuck to the initial plan focus on GT and grass root racing!

They should have never announced 'Elan' the Focus should have been on Evora all along!

They should be hard at work and dead quiet on their Esprit - the only noise needed is the new V8 car roaring at the Nurburgring - and next gen Elise!

They can still make it! But they may have to refocus resources in order to make it work - Ditch indycar, bring Evora GTE to ALMS and save money!

But hey CouldaShouldaWoulda!!!!

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I think Fernandes' tactic it to embarrass Group Lotus as publicly as possible in Malaysia. Looks like a tactic to make Proton want to drop a hot potato (as the same government dropped a loss making airline in his lap). Am very surprised at the mistakes made by Groups marketing wizz kid in charge (the latest spat with journalists is not the first).

Lotus have been very good in the past at dropping new models in the market unannounced, I cannot see why the reverse tactic of the new era 5 with launch dateswas chosen.

Like many others I was expecting an esprit in Paris. Now i think they should put the Mansory Evora with big power hike in the market at Elan price point and have a sexy, expensive, available model that delivers some of the new promise. I guess big power would out do the Toyota gearbox, so maybe the proper flappy paddle box

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Lotus need to put the focus back on the car! The Evora cabrio is urgently needed!

The company need to get quiet and then stun again with Evora Cabrio at this year NEC Autoshow!

Less marketing mumbo jumbo and more cars and LOTUS DNA!

Edited by NedaSay
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I agree. Concentrate on what they are best at, and ignore all these costly distractions. They only have a limited budget and should spend that on vehicle development!

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Out of interest what do Lotus think they're actually marketing right now?

The Evora's a great car but there's not exactly an orderly queue to take cars off forecourt. I've no idea what the Elise market's like right now either, with the option limited to the 1.6 engine sales must have dropped off a little. So presumably all of this massive spend is to raise the brand profile for cars that don't exist and no one can buy. Meanwhile the people potentially building them are being laid off. :censored:

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Seems our man is taking to heart Marshall McLuhan's "the medium is the message" far too literally. Maybe it's time for more product, less message?

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

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I'd like to see the sales figures but the stock at my local Lotus dealership changes quite regularly. Popped in there this week and there are 2 new Evoras and at least 4 in the carpark and service bay.

The only car I noticed there today that was there more than 3 weeks ago was the orange Evora S but thats not on their webby so it might be a demo car ?

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With hindsight either buying the Team Lotus IP or sticking with Tony Fernandez crew for the 5 years of their contract to see how they developed would definitely have been preferable!! I mean if Fernandez was guilty of breaching the terms of the licence they could have used that to buy a small stake in the team or agree a common merchandising strategy that favored them. Either way they would have saved themselves a lot of money and hassle.

Its also crazy that they did a concrete 7 year deal with GenII over sponsorship. Surely if there was any problem with renaming the chassis you would put a poison pill clause in the contract so you could dissolve the relationship in circumstances that were beyond your control, even if you had complete faith in your lawyers opinion about the case!

What interests me now is their next move if the appeal is unsuccessful, what do they rename the chassis as they can't leave it as a Renault indefinitely? Joe Saward suggested Elan in trying to make a point which I don't think in reality would be that good. They could simply call it "GenII" (its honest and simply allows the team to be themselves and then they can market their connection to Group Lotus more genuinely as a sponsorship deal and technical collaboration) or ...... "Chapman?" Links into Lotus F1 history but might sound odd in the race commentary!!

I agree that Lotus should think about curtailing some of their other motorsport activities. With being in F1 now they should leave their Le Mans entries to chassis based on the road cars and not go down the prototype route, plus I don't know why they are sponsoring teams in GP2 and GP3, I'm really into motorsport but these series hardly register with me. Indycar? I'm not a regular watcher but I do watch occasionally and follow the news and I think its good to see Lotus there if its not too expensive. I could see Lotus become the exotic grandee brand in Indycar that Ferrari is in F1, though I know some of you will disagree with their participation. They really need now though to be building up their grassroots track day stuff as Caterham with fresh funding will be expanding massively in that area!

Edited by Gus82
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I'd like to see the sales figures but the stock at my local Lotus dealership changes quite regularly. Popped in there this week and there are 2 new Evoras and at least 4 in the carpark and service bay.

The only car I noticed there today that was there more than 3 weeks ago was the orange Evora S but thats not on their webby so it might be a demo car ?

When I was picking my Esprit after its service last week I had a chat with our local sales guy - he had had a 'very busy week' as 4 Evora's had just gone out of the door and he was working through a couple more orders. Is it shifting as slow as some say or is it picking up? He seems to think the latter.

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The objective of MJK with Evora was something like 2000 cars a year worlwide! Evora was never going to be the most visible car on the block! With the IPS and S they should have no problem selling the anticipated 2000 cars a year! Still we won't see many on the road I've seen one in the wild so far in a Tamworth NSW! Friends of mine have spotted quite a few in California!

What I'd like to know is how many Elise can they shift with the current configuration! I'm not speaking about Exige which is pretty much dead! Actually it's another good reason to give the thumbs down to the new management team at large! Exige should not go into the night like that! They've had years to prepare for a replacement engine for the ZZ 1.8L! Toyota has a few engine namely the 2.4L which could be supercharged to 220 BHP while still complying with the new EU regulations on emissions! Should you tell me that all the staff has been entirely focused on Evora and Esprit, I'll call that BS!

I like dreams just as much as the next guy but at the end of the day you can only sell vaporware for so long! Lotus should be able to shift about 2000 Elise/Exige right now! I expect them to present some updates and upgrades to these two soon, let's say the NEC: new dashboard, engine, gearbox and yes Elise IPS should be a given don't ask me why! If they can shift these then they are shifting about 4000 cars a year and all is well!

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