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Wilhelm / Günter, I have no problem with a 2+2, in fact I'm kind of in the market for one - I've let it be known elsewhere here that I'm just picking the right time / opportunity to step into an Aston Martin Rapide which I see as a sports car with extra rear seats.  I think the Ferrari FF / 612 and Maserati Granturismo are the other two cars that fit this model though the 991 is pretty close.  For me the problem is that few other 2+2s really meet the need if the two parents are both >180cm, in my instance closer to 190cm.

 

I adore the way the Evora drives but I think the old team who developed the concept didn't understand marketing / market needs. Much of the early press was about the uniqueness of the 2+2 mid engined layout.  This is like the IT industry shouting about technical specs.  As is now clear most buyers don't think this way - they want something that meets their needs.  If the primary objective is decent rear seats build something with great rear seats. Just like shouting about processor speeds, most buyers don't care (IMHO) about engine location - they want the benefits that a mid-engine provides, not the fact it's mid-engined.

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  • Gold FFM

2 seater, or 2+2

-all are meant as 'two door'  coupe  or call it GT

 

..4 door cars are seen as 'Touring car/Saloons' ..even in the FIA/motorsport world

 

So I would say the Aston as a four door car is simply one competitor in the group of 'stretched' coupe-look-a-like sedans, same as Mercedes CLS, this one VW-Passat based thing and the Audi version  ..and as it is bigger than a sporty coupe, so I would not call it sportscar. There is power in all those cars, of course as usuall nowadays ..but that power is just there to compete on the straight line, you could not win in the corner, so as long as a car is heavy on the brake and rolls notable on a track in the US (there are many interesting tracks with curves and bends as you may know) ..as long as it is to heavy for that it is not a sportscar, not even a 2 seater GT kind of thing.

Edited by Günter

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Günter,

 

I'm presuming that you haven't driven a Rapide.  The Audi, Merc etc are all based saloon cars and their driving characteristics seem inherited from the cars they're based on.  The Rapide is based on a DB9 / DBS and that's where its driving characteristics are derived. It's nowhere like as sporting as my Elise (what is?) but it's much more sporting than something like the Maserati Granturismo S which only has 2 doors.  All the packaging compromises that it has derive from the fact it has a platform evolved from the Lotus-designed one used in the original Vanquish.

 

I'll give you that it's heavy (but that doesn't make it an outlier these days) and it's certainly a GT like the cars it's based on but I really don't (after having significant time in both) think it's much off a non-GT badged modern 911.  Of course the Porsche can't compete with a naturally aspirated V12 though the old GT3 engine is very special.

 

I too was sceptical before I drove one and thought I'd be much better off in a DBS / DB9 but there is very little difference in the way it drives and it offers proper rear seats for children (unlike pretty much everything except the Ferrari / Maseratis).

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Rapide is around 1.9t  ...the other Astons are also 'heavy' for GT-coupes, with around 1.7t  ..and you can't tell me this is sportive to drive without any computer assistance, the thing is that you need those add-ons just to hold the vehicle mass straight on the road not to tell from cornering, it is just physics  ..a different exhaust note, or a 'sharper' rpm band sometimes gives the customer the impression the car drives faster and feels sporty  ..but that is not something you can prove by physics and propper measuring



it is not only the vehicle mass as a problem, it is the wheelbase too -all those big coupes and the 'coupe shaped' 4door sedands have a notable long wheelbase compared with a real sporty car concept -think you know what yaw-rate and center of gravity  vs. overall mass vs. wheelbase means in the end.

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to name the things if I see them, that's what I call integrity..

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Hi Andrew

Has the Rapide significant more legroom in the back than a DB9? (enough to justify the larger car?)

The Rapide seeing it in the flesh looks a little big larger than the DB9 to me, within the parking garage I use in munich it looks nearly as bis as a Panamera, Ferrari FF looks even much bigger, like the old BMW Z3 coupe "pumped up"

 

Me ,being 186 cm, wife 168 cm and 10 year old daughter 150 cm and middle large dog (behind me) fit into the Evora but not comfy of course, 20 miles or an one hour drive would be ok. If you want to use it as a 4 seater regularly or on longer distances another car would be better - but for my purposes the Evora ist the perfect car as it delivers the minimum space I need to justify (and I wanted to have) buying the car. 

 

I would not care to which category the car you like is put into "normally" (Gt, spotscar, Minivan whatever) - it has to be a YPP-car - Your Personal Purpose car - nothing else - (you always have to keep in mind that most 911 are used as a prestige shopping kart - so: who cares of the category?)  just my 2p 

Cheers

Willi

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Günter, I understand where you're coming from and for something for a sunday morning blast in the mountains or on a track I'd agree with you, but for a GT I'm not convinced that weight is such an important factor.  The Nissan GTR seems to handle its weight pretty well and several of the V12 Ferraris aren't that much heavier (FF is within 60kg or so). It's not just computers - suspension technology has evolved a lot in the last 10 years and with a family in tow I get too much grief doing anything other than making smooth, rapid progress.

 

Wilhelm, the Rapide has lots more space than a DB9.  If you've ever seen a Ferrari 612 or FF or the Maserati Granturismo S then internal packaging-wise it's about the same - somewhere between a Golf and a 3 series.  Decent enough though I give you poor for a car just over 5m long. Have a look at this video from Evo - it's pretty fair though I came to the opposite conclusion, partly I guess because lifting & strapping a small child into the rear of a Maser was hard work and I missed the steering / control feel.

 

We just didn't fit in an Evora, nor a 911.  I'm just a bit taller than you and my wife has the same leg length as I do (we never change seat positions). We now have 2 children.  We're looking for something that can take us comfortably from Zurich to Maastricht to see the inlaws or down to the med for the weekend. Of course that route down to Italy will be over some passes.

 

Don't get me wrong - I adore the Evora but it would really only be a 2 seater for MPP and in that instance I'd always prefer something more focused like the Elise (I sometimes think I should have got a 2-11 because the Elise is too much of a compromise for the sunday run on the passes or in the Black Forest.)

 

Anyway, this is all a little bit of a diversion.  My point was that Lotus seems to have flipped from one extreme to another and even as someone who has lusted after them since I was in shorts I'm losing hope.  Fundamentally I think that the Bahar diagnosis was right but neither he, nor Proton nor DRB were the right folks to execute on that vision.

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  • Gold FFM

rumors say Lotus was there to help on the GTR handling ;)

 

..the same reason why none worries that most modern SUV 4x4 with body colored bumpers an plastic skirts can't handle off road for real is why none cares about the heavier GTs who are not actually seen on a trackday so often

-it's typical improper use that is common nowadays!

 

..see the 4x4 mostly used in towns, for momys with kids .

.and the GTs, who are not seen on a track this often, or on a real *cross Europe run*  ..no those are seen on a car-train that offers transport from Munich to Italy ..so in other words it is mostly 'just for looks' -that's why it is not a problem with the heavier GT cars in customer view.

 

For me the sentence *GT* means a sportive car, with two doors that can run on its own wheels to the trackday, even if this is in the Ardennes or in Salzburg, and back to Berlin with two people of 1.80 -1.90m inside .. with sound system and maybe A/C or phone ..runs good around the corners without to much braking and tire slip and has a boot that holds up two weekend softbacks.

 

I tried to fit in the front and into the rear of the Evora, in Hethel & in Dresden (Germany) ..and have driven the car in UK ..and I'm 1.90m with 110kg  ..so know what you mean -the Evora is not a real 4seater, it is a clear 2 seater if you count for people with modern size, on the top end of the 95percentil group -so size of 1.90m+  ..the seat position for this offers not much reserve on the seat rail to go further back, it is mostly as far behind as it goes anyway .. that is why the (+2) comes on the Evora just optional, for temporarly use.

From outside proportion the Evora is a blown Elise shape .. positive thing is that the chassis area in the center is a little wider, so it offers more shoulder room and feels bigger, but it is still no real 4 seater -so nothing to blame, the Evora fits into the GT concept from my point of view.

 

The reason to go 'bigger' (at least in terms of comparision with Elise base dimension) was mostly that there is a market, a market Lotus was not in so far after the Esprit was banned (running out of exemptions(wavers based on its 70/80th technoogy)  ..and as the money that the group of consumers spend every yeear for new cars even in the luxury range is limited (or number of customers who have interest) it needs for a company to go there with the actual trend, instead of building up a interest in its own allready existing more traditionaly 'track oriented' nimble products (or not so nimble, if you see how the Elise grows within the years, based on mass increase of the vehicle)

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to name the things if I see them, that's what I call integrity..

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Apart from having 4 doors the Aston fits your GT description pretty well.  I (188cm) can fit in the back with another me in the front but I wouldn't want to for too long a drive.  It's not a Panamera in that respect.  Aston raced the Rapide with only minor changes (mostly safety) and it did pretty well.  Road & Track lapped a standard car for 24 hours with impressive results.  I wouldn't think many of the other 4 door coupes would stand up well to that sort of use.

 

But, and I think this is a big but, I don't think if you were serious about taking a car on a track you'd think of buying most GTs.  The cost of consumables would be hard to stomach and I bet you'd have more fun in something like an old elise.  I have a good friend with a S1 exige for short tracks and until recently a GT3RS for taking to the ring.  Both of these cars are designed for this type of environment.  Can you track a GT? Yes, of course you can. Would you want to? Probably not if you're serious about track driving.

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if you can fit two adults into the car, one behind the other -it is not longer a GT sporty two-seater from my perspective, that is what I mean ...

 

..it is all a question of (styling)proportion .. a GT is just a more luxury type (from point of equippement/engine) coupe ..that's how I see it

 

-so an Aston with four full seats and some extra doors too, that is not a coupe in my mind

 

(OK, I know that historically [from anchient coach building] most sentences used nowadays in terms of conception are incorrect there anyway)

 

my Esprit is used for normal drive and on the track, and I even damage it here & there and so on .. Hockenheim, Lausitzring, Spreewaldring, Nordschleife .. and as I'm not a really on the edge fast driver with 'optimal lap time' or driftbox/go-pro equippement in focus I can still have fun with this car in my own speed limits, without work to hard on handling  (and the Esprit does not have computer controls, apart from ABS of course)

Edited by Günter

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to name the things if I see them, that's what I call integrity..

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  • 4 weeks later...

This topic will run and run!

In the meantime, another car show has passed Lotus by. Not to worry. It was just in China, home to just 1.2 billion people, lots of them becoming rather rich.

Whatever you thought of Dany Bahar, can I just point out the rather obvious fact that had the previous 10 years gone well, he wouldn't have been given the task of 'turning things around'?

In short, Lotus was failing before Bahar. It failed during Bahar's reign, and it continues to fail today.

You may well have a personal preference about which particular brand of abject failure you choose to support or attack, but let's not kid ourselves that things were, are, or seem to be going well.

I don't mean to dismiss the recent past as being without technical successes, and I don't mean to belittle the sterling efforts of those trying to do their best, but with the company starved of investment and unable in the end to produce products that can find an audience and earn a tidy profit with large enough sales volumes and profit per unit, the dice were, are, and continue to be loaded firmly against any real success.

The solution isn't to do slightly bland low volume supercars. If you're going to ask a vast amount of money for a nippy go kart, it had better make you look and feel rather special. The argument 'if it's bland, then it doesn't need redesigning very often' is a false one in my view. A *classic* design doesn't need much refreshing. Arriving at a classic design is not easy. Any failing company can sell low numbers of ugly cars which fail to return their investment.

The Evora will never be *classic*. It was marmite at launch and it has failed to find an audience. So please. Let's hear no more about past ugly ducklings. Donato Coco gave the design a kick up the proverbial. What a shame he never got the chance to do more than marketing vehicles.

And let's hear no more about 1.5 million 'pure profit'. What, actually, can you do with such a sum of money? Design a bicycle? Get the Evora through an airbag test? The result of 10 years of hard slog, and that's the return...? well it's not enough, is it, not in comparison to any sensible R&D investment.

The company drifts in Limbo. I genuinely think it could be the same in 12 months from now at this rate... fingers crossed for a miracle!

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Dany is awesome. I know, cos he told me. Of all the cars I'll never drive, he made the best ones that will never be built. Give him his dues, that's an achievement right there.

Awesome.

Sudders

Sudders and Dany

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Two more years of...  :tumbleweed: and the DRB promotion machine...  :coffee:

 

Followed by... :help:  ???

 

Say what you will about DB but at least he had a vision for Lotus. 

Edited by Stirling_Villeneuve

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

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Two more years of...  :tumbleweed: and the DRB promotion machine...  :coffee:

 

 

lol...

 

Did you know that the DRB homepage mentions Lotus?

 

http://www.drb-hicom.com

 

You have to look hard. Ignore the terrible web design. Ignore the only pictures of a car on the site (They are an Audi, Suzuki, Honda etc., but no Lotus)

 

Click on 'autofest 2013 highlights'. (This was an event 3 months ago). Laugh your socks off at the typed-in-a-rush-before-going-to-the-bar press release.

 

So if you want a demonstration about why DRB haven't been keen to sort out a new direction for Lotus, you just have to put things in context. Lotus is about as important to them as a bikini wax.

 

 

I think the only way they could do a worse job out of promoting lotus or giving an idea of the future would be to put a load of big adverts in the press and on billboards imploring people not to bother trying to work out where the dealerships are because there's no point. The copy could say:

 

"We don't care if you buy our cars, so why should you?"

 

Or.

 

"We ended up with a car company in Norfolk. What's it for?"

 

Or.

 

"To see how important Lotus is to us, check out the manufacturing page of our website:

http://www.drb-hicom.com/cms/SolutionPages/Business%20Content.aspx?ContentID=5c3eedef-9572-4c6a-a788-b0b29a9934fd"

 

 

Or.

 

"If there's one thing that gets our pulse racing, it's Suzuki Parts Distribution in the Pacific Rim! Buy a porsche."

Edited by cnapan
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:lol:

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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I just searched for 'Lotus' on the DRB website... nada!

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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I saw the Lotus roundel on one page and some pics of scooters.

 

I gave up after that cos it's taking too long to load a page. Can't be bothered really.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Strictly speaking Lotus is still a subsiduary of Proton, which is now a subsiduary of DRB. Interestingly the Proton website does present the new Lotus showroom in Malaysia very prominantly.

 

But, when you click for the corporate website you only get a 404-message (website not found).

If you have the choice between a Stairway to Heaven and a Highway to Hell don't forget the Nomex®!

Captain,  Lotus Airways. We fly lower! 

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So if you want a demonstration about why DRB haven't been keen to sort out a new direction for Lotus, you just have to put things in context. Lotus is about as important to them as a bikini wax.

 

If I had pumped over £100 million (whatever the figure is) into a company I would like to think it would be important!  Unless they do have more money than sense..

 

With Lotus F1 doing so well and, despite everything, the brand still having a certain sheen to it, I am staggered that Lotus seems so invisible on their website, depsite the fact its technically under Protons wing.

 

And you guys are right...its painfully slow.

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Are Lotus doing well though? There's a few Exige S orders finally being delivered after almost a year ago and sheen is 99% DB's doing courtesy of F1. I have to admit I've lost pretty much all faith in the marque, which isn't good...  :scared:

Edited by Stirling_Villeneuve

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

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