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Lotus Driving Academy closed today..... - Page 3 - Lotus / Motoring / Cars Chat - The Lotus Forums - Official Lotus Community Partner Jump to content


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Lotus Driving Academy closed today.....


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Lisa who works in the shop has been seconded to purchasing. 

Factory tours are still on the website.

http://www.lotuscars.com/about-us/lotus-factory-tour

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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A website that still links to the driving academy page (which doesn't mention they are closed)

I'd be happy if they are still doing tours, a lot of friends would like to go

James Martin (JayEmm)
Director of Photography & Car Enthusiast

Follow my Lotus adventure online! www.jayemm.com

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I have always been drawn to Lotus. I don't know why, but it started when I was small. I was never drawn to the other sport car makes like I was to these guys. If JMG is stripping it down for a sale, even though he is the CEO, he must be doing this on some directive.

I just hope it all works out. I may never own another Lotus after my S4 goes, but I certainly hope that Lotus remain.

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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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Factory tours are showing as sold out. I already had a voucher so contacted Lotus to ask for availability and I am now confirmed on the Factory and Heritage Tour for November 16th.  It seems I could be one of the last to experience this, but I am very much looking forward to it, even though it is a 900 mile round trip to Hethel for me!

I had put aside cash for the full lotus Academy driving skills licence for next Spring. As that does not look like an option is looks like Sylvia, my VX220 NA may well get a wee supercharger kit added with the cash instead. Either that or Scarlett gets the Win-Ace GTE front end, rear end, and carbon bonnet scoops!  Oooh, decisions decisions...

I came into this world screaming and covered in someone elses blood. I'll probably leave it in the same way. 

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Cool. Thanks. Might have the wife in tow, though hopefully she'll be off shopping / sight seeing in Norwich.

I came into this world screaming and covered in someone elses blood. I'll probably leave it in the same way. 

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Seems a bit odd closing something that gets people to experience these cars safely in the way they were designed, especially if it's that busy...

Personally, and I am sure you will all disagree with me on this, but I thought the Academy was a not worth the money. Something like £600 for what works out as maximum of an hour in the car (I did level 2 where it was messing about with cones for the morning and a few minutes on the skid pan before a 20 minute track session where we were not allowed to turn of the TC or use second gear). Maybe it is ok if compared to other experience days and you did not have your own Lotus (I've never done one).

However, for that sort of money you can do a track day and have dedicated 1:1 tuition from a top race driving coach. Granted it's in your own car so you're getting wear and tear but you'll get so much more out of it based on your ability, not a predefined course that may not be relevant.

I really think that Lotus should be using that track and facility for potential buyers to try the cars out on track, I dread to think what would have happened if I'd had an invite to try out an 3-11 there? The cars are epic and you don't get a true understanding of their capabilities until you get them on a track. Or run a real academy like umm.... Caterham (I hear you all sighing).

I also wonder if this has something to do with noise issues locally? I understand that recently that all third party track days have been cancelled there because there have been noise limits imposed.

Lotus Register - https://www.lotusregister.com

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9 minutes ago, LF1 said:

I also wonder if this has something to do with noise issues locally? I understand that recently that all third party track days have been cancelled there because there have been noise limits imposed.

I must admit I am very concerned for Alex @Magnitude_Events - he does some superb days at Hethel and I hope this doesn't affect his plans

James Martin (JayEmm)
Director of Photography & Car Enthusiast

Follow my Lotus adventure online! www.jayemm.com

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16 minutes ago, LF1 said:

Seems a bit odd closing something that gets people to experience these cars safely in the way they were designed, especially if it's that busy...

But the statement does not say that the Academies are being closed (particularly the overseas ones) but infers that the Hethel activity will be moved elsewhere?

I tempted fate...now my Esprit V8 IS in bits...(sob)

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I spoke to Jamie at LoT yesterday. He has still got bookings for next year.

I am also very local to the factory at Hethel. My next door neighbour is a Parish councillor so I will ask her if she can tell me anything. I certainly haven't heard (or been told) anything and most (if not all) of my neighbours know that I have a Lotus.

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Fine. That was the wording of the cancellation of the day. I know who owns LoT but they are Lotus days which is why I assumed they were not affected when I checked immediately after seeing the notification. 

Lotus Register - https://www.lotusregister.com

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Well, IMO that statement is some progress. A statement is better than no communication at all, whether you believe the arguments or not.

I can understand that the Academy was not perfect for drivers and that they may need to rethink the approach (I have not done it myself but was rather frustrated with a training day followed with RSR and understand what Tom is saying).

What I struggle to understand is why they are closing two of the main sources of PR and feedback on the cars from actual customers. For a company with such a limited PR budget, this was an opportunity to get closer to the clients on their home ground, with limited costs compared to the exposure and interaction they get from it.

I am voting for them giving a try to opening franchised academies elsewhere (some of us based in Europe did provide that feedback in a thread some time ago) but it would be good to visit them at home, too.

Hopefully the closing is not final and they will be in a position to reconsider the approach at some point in the future.

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A hole has been left for an experience centre at Silverstone now Caterham have gone to Donny. Stowe circuit would be ideal for the Elise at least. And there's plenty of Tarmac for spinning about. Not to mention a top dealership on hand ;)

Lotus Register - https://www.lotusregister.com

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Still, instead of showing proactiveness, the company is showing reactiveness, which shows how under the water they must be, any PR person would have seen the storm coming miles away. They could/should have preempted the reaction. Yes a statement is a good thing, but it sends the wrong message in the end.

Now british LDA clients are left hoping that a week end in the south of France will include good food, cheap accommodation and no meeting with the gendarmes on the way forth and back to the UK  and that a LDA franchise will open in the UK  on a circuit similar to Hethel layout.... 

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Lotus did for a while, run the training courses at Rockingham in about 2002-2004. They were a farce to start with. So much so I got a second one free, while still at Rockingham it was a lot better. I hate all this rubbish where one big mouth can basically get a track shut and often people put out of business. All this talk of Motorsport closing, sorry I mean being absorbed into the factory and the track issues. Doesn't bode well in my book. Just really hope I'm wrong.

Gav

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