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Lotus reveal Exige S Club Racer

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Applying the Lotus refined Club Racer principles to the already stunning Exige S results in the most inspiring version of an already class-leading sports car.

The Exige S is a model that already excels, thanks to its lightweight aluminium chassis-tub and aerodynamically enhanced composite bodywork. Its 3.5-litre supercharged V6 engine delivers exciting performance, benchmark handling and a pure driving experience combined with a 4.0 seconds 0-62mph (0-100km/h) acceleration time and a top speed of 274 km/h (170 mph).

Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc, expressed his enthusiasm for the new model:“Factoring the Club Racer ethos into the Exige enhances the track-focussed potential of this important model. It encompasses our legendary benchmark in handling, with lightweight and efficient construction and that we will always put a peerless and pure driving experience first.”

The new Exige S Club Racer occupies an important niche within the Exige range and arrives hot on the heels of the Elise 220 Cup and the forthcoming Evora 400, unveiled recently at the Geneva Motor Show.

Available only as a coupe model, the car possesses 42 kg of aerodynamic downforce at 100 mph (160 km/h), thanks to the front splitter, rear wing and flat underside, all contributing to its phenomenal performance and handling balance.

At 1161 kg, it is lighter by 15 kg compared to the Exige S, because of its new lightweight battery, lightweight centre console in body colour, lighter doors and lightweight sports seats in leather or Alcantara with colour coded stitching. Traction slip thresholds (‘Drive‘,‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ settings) allowing the driver enhanced vehicle control before intervention is required can be altered via a driver-selectable switch which is now fitted as standard. Both ‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ settings increase throttle responsiveness.

The Exige S Club Racer is available in Metallic White, Exige Orange, Metallic Yellow and Matt Black (option). The front splitter, rear wing, front access panel, roof panel, wing mirrors and rear transom are in matt black. Club Racer decals inside on the dashboard and seats and outside above the side indicator identify this latest special addition to the Exige range.

All this additional equipment amounts to £4,500 worth of extra value, for only £2,400 more than the standard Exige S (£54,500).

The Lotus Exige S Club Racer is on sale now with an MSRP of £56,900. For other currency prices, please contact the Lotus press office. Orders can be placed now.

 

Specifications:

Each Lotus Exige S Club Racer will have the following as standard:

*  Body coloured light weight centre console

*  Leather, or Alcantara (no cost), lighter sports seat trim option

*  Colour-coded stitching on seats and door cards

*  Colour-coded seat hoops

*  Sports steering wheel

*  ‘Drive‘, ‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ settings for Traction slip thresholds

*  Lightweight battery

*  Matt Black distinguishing exterior trim pack

*  A choice of four exterior colours - Exige Orange, Metallic White, Metallic Yellow, Matt Black (option)

*  ‘Exige S CR’ decals externally and on dashboard stereo blanking-plate

 

Options

Air Conditioning                                                           £1,250

CD/Radio and USB Connection and NVH Pack      £1,200

Matt Black Paint                                                           £2,000

Lightweight Two-Piece Brakes                                  £1,850

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Wow - Lotus are knocking out the new models this week... Was hoping to see 420bhp on this baby!

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So is this a special edition to attract Porsche GT4 customers, or a run out special edition before the face lifted Exige 400 is released?

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i'm not sure about this.. yet another exige only 15kg lighter which is what, about 1%? nothing.

if somebody is planning to buy exige anyway, it might be interesting, but I doubt anybody would even thing to swap their car especially for this.

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The CR ethos seems to have worked well with the Elise, so why not try it on the Exige?

 

I agree it isn't going to tempt in new buyers, but it might be enough to get a few 'undecided's' to sign on the dotted line.

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Looks like a good value package to me. The 'Cup' look appears to be popular among V6S owners, makes sense to offer it from the factory. With the new Evora 22kg lighter after a full tear-down, 15kg is a worthwhile effort, for comparison Porsche only found a 10kg reduction for the new GT3RS. You won't notice 15kg less to drive but it will cancel out the weight penalty for aircon.

 

I know special editions have become a 'pet hate' on some forums but this looks like a good deal and a great car.

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Does the launch announcement miss a trick by underplaying the aero down force aspect? 42 kg at 100 mph is not to be sneezed at.

 

Aero kit and the resulting down force was the prime feature of the Elise S Cup; well, the only real feature over say, the S Club Racer.

 

I'm no expert, but considering only a realistic range of airspeeds and fixed aero components, broadly, the down force will increase with airspeed. Only broadly, because surface attached flows may break away at certain speeds, eddies form etc.

 

Taking the Elise S Cup figures for 100, 124 and 140 mph for example, the down force increases by around 30% more than the speed increase for the range from 100 to 140 mph. (Similar from 100 to 124 mph.)

 

So if the aero characteristics of the Exige Cup were similar to the Elise Cup, scaling the Exige figures from 42 kg at 100 mph in proportion to the Elise's 66 kg at 100 mph, calculates the Exige downforce to increase to 66 kg at 124 mph and 80 kg at 140 mph.

 

Sadly, I fear the increase is not as great as that, hence why Lotus has decided not to give the figures. The Elise Cup clearly has far more actual aero kit than the Exige, doubtless for serious effect.

 

Having said that, I expect there to be a valuable increase in down force and, further, the Exige will actually reach 140 mph in track use; for the Elise that figure will be little worth outside bragging competitions.

 

I wonder whether Lotus experimented with any more substantial aero kit? If not, ...........  

 

Re the weight saving, it's small but I like it. If not the aircon as above, its equivalent to 20 litres of petrol.

 

Altogether a very attractive package IMO and I can see it sitting nicely with 345 bhp and no weight-adding options as a cheaper alternative to the Exige 400 Cup in due course.

Edited by mdavies

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Looking at the pictures above the aero looks the same as the current coupe?

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Agree Tom, as far as we can tell.  The wing angle might be different though. We need the Cd figure. I have that for the current version somewhere. In fact it's on here in a thread where I posted about the (now called) Elise 220 Cup aero and compared with several other cars.  No time to look now and I don't want to post it until I check. No time now. Someone else?

 

Must start asking around re this model and how down force varies with speed.

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If it's anything like the Elise CR there was no aero difference, it was all weight saving and suspension/roll bar. Which most people undid with the comfort pack.

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There seems to be a clear marketing direction behind these special editions which Lotus as almost been pouring out recently. Obviously these cars tailor more to the existing Lotus customers, people who know the brand and look for that "distinguishing extra". So, most of these sales will be a Lotus for a Lotus, with the old one entering the used car market for (new) lower budget buyers.

 

If Lotus were actively focussing primarily on new customers it wouldn't make sense to bring these special editions. If I were a prospective first time customer I would find this confusing. What is the difference between an Exige S, an Exige V6 Cup, an Exige S Club Racer and which do I need (or want)? Trying to pit one modell against a Porker is hard enough, but trying it with a wide range of editions even harder.

 

So, in the larger scheme of things JMG seems to have made some clear decisions for the near future. I think it may have been a wise choice.

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