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Paddle shifters for future Lotus cars ...

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I have no issue with a paddle shifter. If it enables me do drive with more precision, maybe a little bit quicker, then that's a good thing. I don't see it as automatic, I still have control as to which gear I'm in, I can still down change to help slow the car, and it enables me to left foot brake more easily.

Apart from Jeremy Clarkson being unable to find reverse, I can't see a draw back. Having said all that, you need a good one, programmable, flexible and controllable to suite the driver.

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I have never driven a mid engine Lotus where I would consider the "stick" to be a joy.  M



The shift on S2 Esprit was brilliant, light, direct and fast.  Maybe yours needs some work or perhaps you're more picky than I.


My XF has paddle shifts but it never really comes out of auto mode so it changes down as you slow and changes up when they revs get high whether you I use the paddles or not so I always run it in normal, auto mode.  There's plenty of poor auto boxes and plenty of poor manual shifts so you can't say one is always better than the other.  I agree, though, that a good manual is more involving and more fun than a good paddle shift.

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


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Buy a manual now while you still can. That's what I've done anyway.



Nothing else to say - tastes are different but I believe I hadn´t bought the Evora if it had not been available with a manual shifter. I was always inrested in a AMG Mercedes but the fact that they are only available with an auto, semi auto or whatever gives me the impression that there´s not that much fun as it could be (for me).

Just my 2p

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Having spent time flogging quite a few manual transmissions and a couple of cars with high quality, twin-clutch automatic gearboxes on a few race tracks, my opinion is that if Lotus were to use a top-notch twin-clutch with both auto and manual shift modes I'd consider that a plus. The very best of the DSG style transmissions are actually great to drive, and let you focus more on the actual corners than rowing gears.

While I understand that shifting is essentially an unconscious activity once you internalize the process, even in track situations with enough experience, I did find there is a small but noticeable improvement in the level of focus I can apply to cornering when I don't have to worry about the gearbox. It seems like it would be a small thing, but that small thing does improve lap times.

When computers were first introduced there were slide-rule purists. That analogy applies to thousands of areas in our lives where technology has moved forward and improved them immensely, even if we don't notice or think about those technological changes. I see the these new transmissions as just another expression of that inevitable chain of improvement.

That said, if Lotus were to use a more conventional automatic disguised with paddle shifters or a low quality dual clutch that was more irritation than benefit, I think it could further damage the brand. Lotus seems to have always been about engineering minimalism and forward thinking technology. Regurgitating someone else's sub-standard technology would be a step backwards. Using good technology from someone else and giving it the Lotus re-touch would be simply honoring tradition.

Edited by erioshi
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I don't mind paddle shifts but it does take me a while to get used to them.

I'm interested by the comments that they're better emissions wise. I always expected this to be the case but every time I've considered autos for the company barge the tax has been higher on the auto (this is since the tax became emission based, I had autos before).

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Hate paddle shift. The problem is, unless you have a really good one they are mostly useless, slow and annoying. All the good ones are fast, precise, quick and............Extremely expensive!


An extra £5-10k on a £100k supercar that's fine, but on a £30-50k Lotus? No thanks.

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