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3 hours ago, DarrylV8 said:

But would you spend £153K+ on a limited run Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA even with 533horses?

Nope- but that’s a different proposition ,limited numbers blah blah blah- probably people that buy that car already have a garage full of super car stuff.even still, it’s crazy money

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1 hour ago, LotusLeftLotusRight said:

Not sure the McLaren F1 is a good example. There was a 19 year gap between the launch of that road car and their next one (MP4-12C). Still at the current pace of brand new model launches at Hethel, you never know!

By the way, the original Lexus was always the poor man’s Merc. Still is for me. Don’t forget that back then the Japanese were trying to hoodwink American buyers into buying their cars primarily by changing/adding new brand names from Toyota, Nissan and Honda to something a bit less Japanesey and more upmarket sounding.

You should know the full story. The engineering and innovation in that car was incredible. But your comments are a great example of the prejudice that exists about cars and how hard it is to overcome. It probably didn't matter that the LS400 beat the Merc 420SE in many areas. You thought Lexus and wen't straight to 'nah'. Many people feel much the same about Lotus compared to Porsche and it will take a lot to convince them otherwise. This is the power of a stong brand. Whether or not you've ever owned a Mercedes, whether or not the Merc is actually better than a Lexus, you have been led to believe in the superiority of the Merc. Lotus need to lead people to believe in their cars beyond places like TLF too now.

The point about the McLaren F1 was that it did wonders for the McLaren brand and changed perceptions by being first and foremost a road car. It was widely accepted as the greatest high-performance road car ever made at that time so it made a clear statement about McLaren being all about excellence, the ultimate in whatever they do. It wasn't much of a commercial success but it proved - and continued to prove for years after - that McLaren could make a better supercar than anyone else. Hell of a statement when Ferrari and others have been doing it for years. The F1 was very relevant to the 12C. There was massive anticipation for McLaren's next road car because of the F1, even after 15 years. Also 15 years later the F1 had become revered and respected even more than when it was launched. It's about brand building and changing perceptions about the McLaren brand from a maker of ultimate race cars to a maker of ultimate road cars. They did that with one car. Sadly for McLaren it's something that build quality and reliability issues seem to be undoing now. McLaren is a much more accessible brand than it was but it is losing some of the allure with that. Car companies do what they have to, to make money but too many brands are sold cheap with short term thinking. A brand is a promise and keeping your promises is how you build trust with your customers.

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 "whether or not the Merc is actually better than a Lexus, you have been led to believe in the superiority of the Merc".

 

i don't think that is entirely correct; even if people do believe the Lexus is the superior car they will still buy the Merc; i think it's the superiority of the brand rather than the actual car per se

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@LotusLeftLotusRight can speak for himself but I don't believe he thinks the Lexus is superior. But even if someone did, you have to consider what that brand preference is built upon. Whatever it is, Lotus will be needing plenty of it in the years ahead.

 

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On 02/05/2020 at 09:08, DarrylV8 said:

But would you spend £153K+ on a limited run Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA even with 533horses?

Great though that car is; the Quadrifoglio is just over £65k and has 510bhp.

OK so that has lots of carbon (but supposedly so did the QF) - so I jus don't see why you would spend £153k on it for the additional performance that you're not going to use very often.

Had they produced something akin to a modern day Montreal - I could perhaps see it; or maybe if they had got another 100-150bhp above the QF. 

IMHO Alfa target price for the QF should have been £80-85k.

I hope Lotus aren't going to bring out the 'new Esprit' with say 455bhp and think - hey, the Evora 'Phil Spec' is £83k, lets sell these for £200k 😱

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On 02/05/2020 at 15:16, LotusLeftLotusRight said:

You’re missing part of the point. There was no Lexus brand. It was Toyota. Should Lotus attempt to go upmarket by creating a new brand, such as Loxus or something? The LS400 was a copy of another company’s product. I hope Lotus doesn’t just make another Cayman or 911. I want to see a new Lotus.

I don't think Lotus need to change brand identity.

Toyota produced cheap cars - and when they tried selling more expensive ones - needed to change their brand identity to, in part, justify the premium price.

Lotus went 'up-market' in the mid-1970's - and I'm sure I recall someone from Geely saying that they were once comparable with Ferrari.

I catullus think there is a market for a brand in the £60-£100k price band which would be attractive to the 'expensive' BMW, Audi and Jaguar drivers by being a bit more rarer and unique and not having a lot of 'basic' mass-market models which look very similar to the more expensive ones. 

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Not particularly relevant in a thread about the Future of Lotus, but I have a copy of the Autocar road test of the Renault GTA V6 Turbo dated 23 July 1986.

They list 6 cars as The Opposition. Here they all are in price order only.
£29,033 DeTomaso Pantera

£27,547 Porsche 944 Turbo

£23,905 Renault GTA V6 Turbo

£23,440 Lotus Esprit Turbo

£20,395 Jaguar XJ-S 3.6

£18,275 TVR 350i FHC

£17,751 Nissan 300ZX Turbo

What would their respective values be now if you had bought one of each new and kept in mint condition?

 

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1 minute ago, C8RKH said:

Erm isn't that exactl;y where Jaguar, BMW and Audi are and exactly what they have done? I mean every 3rd BMW is NOT M badged these days. Merc have more AMG models than I have nasal hairs (and I have a lot!) etc.  It's hard to tell apart the X1, X2, X3, X4, X5 and X6 - 6, yes 6 different SUVs and people buy them to feel special and different!  Then you have the M1, M2, M3, M4, M5, M6, M7, and probably the M52, M62, M74, M11 and god knows what else. All look identical with some being shrunk and some on steroids.

Errrhhhhh...that's my point.

There are a large number of cars that are sold at that price point that are bases on more bog-standard cars'.

I think there is therefore a market at that price point - where you could sell something that is a 'bit different'.

1 minute ago, C8RKH said:

Would it not be great if Lotus had 3 or 4 models, different price points, all hugely focused on the driver, but with packages to suit the different buyers?  You could argue the Elise AND the Exige are too hardcore, too similar in many ways. The Evora is just sublime but no one knows about it. Paddleshift or manual with 550bhp and it would slay EVERY 911 this side of a Turbo S or GT3.  I'd pay £125k for that rather than buy a Macca, Jaguar, Porsche etc.

IMHOI, in addition to the Evija, Lotus need a 'Elise' type car - perhaps with a version going into Exige territory; an Esprit/Evora (the latter which I consider to be really only a 2-seater because the rear are unusable other than for someone who needs a baby seat - or is a Chihuahua) ; and  proper  2+2 Coupe (Elite/Eclat).

They err towards the side of driver focus (especially the Elsie) but should not be 'impracticable' to such a degree that only a masochist would want one. 

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On 02/05/2020 at 10:47, The Pits said:

It has often been said that the Mercedes Benz S class is consistently the best engineered car in the world

FWIW the latest E-Class is well below par! Build quality I would say is fine but ride comfort and noise levels have turned out to be quite shocking....so a much smaller mountain to climb if Mercedes remains a benchmark.

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21 minutes ago, LotusLeftLotusRight said:

Not particularly relevant in a thread about the Future of Lotus, but I have a copy of the Autocar road test of the Renault GTA V6 Turbo dated 23 July 1986.

They list 6 cars as The Opposition. Here they all are in price order only.
£29,033 DeTomaso Pantera

£27,547 Porsche 944 Turbo

£23,905 Renault GTA V6 Turbo

£23,440 Lotus Esprit Turbo

£20,395 Jaguar XJ-S 3.6

£18,275 TVR 350i FHC

£17,751 Nissan 300ZX Turbo

What would their respective values be now if you had bought one of each new and kept in mint condition?

 

Not sure of their present value - but according to the Bank of Englands Inflation calculator that Esprit would be £70k at todays value - so the Evora has gone 'up-market' by £10-15k 

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What car would I like Lotus to make?  Hmmm tricky one...

On one hand I'd like them to make a ~£50K Alpine competitor.  I really I'd like them to stick to supercharged engines ( I like the power delivery) but I guess a turbo inline 4 will be the only option stay competitive, regarding power and emissions.  It needs to have easy ingress, even easier than the Evora.  Current Evora levels of interior quality and I think in terms of tech what is offered in Evora is fine, reversing camera, Sat Nav / Car play, Bluetooth, done!  I think it will help get them in the mainstream a bit more, sell higher volumes and help to generate a bit more revenue and profit.  A bit like an updated S2 Elan but with rear wheel dive. I think that maybe better for the company.  

But for purely selfish reasons I'd like them to make to make a £100K junior supercar ie an update to the Evora (ideally if they can make that for ~£50K then even better as I can just about afford one 😉 ).  I'd want a proper drivetrain in there, don't mind if its bought in from outside or developed in house but I don't want compromises to the layout.  I want it longitudinally mounted, get the weight lower down and shift the weight balance just a tiny bit further forward (get rid of the +2) and a proper gearbox with a good shifting action.   I know the latest Elige and Evora models have a good shift but its taken ~8years for them to get there.  With a proper drivetrain hopefully they should be able to produce a great shift from the start without having to spend a long time to develop it.  Also if they can shed a bit more weight from the Evora then even would be great but imagine thats gonna be pretty hard for something that isn't a stripped down cup version.  I think I'm asking for Exige handling with Evora refinement?

 

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24 minutes ago, tim_marra said:

Isn't the Evora regarded as the better handling car though?

On the road yes. For sure.

 

1 hour ago, KAS-118 said:

should not be 'impracticable' to such a degree that only a masochist would want one.

I actually think this is dumb - the many on here who have met me know I ain't no whisper thin size 10 whippet. I'm more like a St. Bernard that's eaten all the pies. BUT, I have an Evora 410 that I have no issues getting in and out of at all - in fact, bizarrely my S90 is harder for me to get in because of the door pillar position between the front and rear doors!  I also have a VX220 - so similar to S2 Elise for getting in and out of - and I have no problem getting into it, driving for 300 plus miles for a track day, doing the track day, then driving back.  I'm not brave enough to be a masochist (my safeword is "chocolate" lol) and do not believe you need to be a masochist or have masochistic tendencies to have or want a Lotus. You do need to be willing to make a compromise or two. And there in is the rub. These days people want (1) the badge and status  (2)  to belong to the right crowd  (3) for other people to think "oh wow, he/she's got a new xxxxxxxx (insert porsche/bmw/audi/merc model name here) so they must be doing really well".

However, for those that are willing to step out of the safety and anonymity of the crowd, a whole new pleasure dome exists for you to explore.  As my mate Frankie would say, "Welcome......" 

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Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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16 minutes ago, C8RKH said:

I actually think this is dumb - the many on here who have met me know I ain't no whisper thin size 10 whippet. I'm more like a St. Bernard that's eaten all the pies. BUT, I have an Evora 410 that I have no issues getting in and out of at all - in fact, bizarrely my S90 is harder for me to get in because of the door pillar position between the front and rear doors!  I also have a VX220 - so similar to S2 Elise for getting in and out of - and I have no problem getting into it, driving for 300 plus miles for a track day, doing the track day, then driving back.  I'm not brave enough to be a masochist (my safeword is "chocolate" lol) and do not believe you need to be a masochist or have masochistic tendencies to have or want a Lotus. You do need to be willing to make a compromise or two. And there in is the rub. These days people want (1) the badge and status  (2)  to belong to the right crowd  (3) for other people to think "oh wow, he/she's got a new xxxxxxxx (insert porsche/bmw/audi/merc model name here) so they must be doing really well".

However, for those that are willing to step out of the safety and anonymity of the crowd, a whole new pleasure dome exists for you to explore.  As my mate Frankie would say, "Welcome......" 

Do you now....so just to clarify, you think its dumb to say that Lotus should NOT produce a car that only a masochist would want. I find that odd, as the way you desrcribe the Evora and the Vauxhall is that they are outwith that definition.

My definition of dumb is something, or someone, who fails to adapt to a changing circumstances and/or apply itself properly to the situation that it is faced with.

Of course, you do need to make a compromise - and a manufacturer needs to decide where it wants to be in respect of that compromise. Both a Caterham Super 7 and a Maxda MX5 are small 2-seater sports cars. The Caterham errs towards the track to such an extent it has little comfort, practicality and indeed lacks many modern day features including safety features. A Mazda MX5 errs more towards comfort and everyday usability. 

Of course someone may want a out and out racer and buy the Caterham - but the problem is, very very very few people will want to use it as an everyday car.

The Mazda MX5 is still 'impractical' compared to a Hot-Hatch or SUV, but many people do use them as 'every day' cars. They have space to store things, you don't get drowned when it rains.

But everyone I've known who owns one still thinks they are great driver cars and great fun.- and for the masochist's, you can modify them and strip the niceties out of them.

Personally, I have enough faith in Lotus to think that they are capable of producing cars that do have a nod towards some practicality  (just enough to make it liveable as a daily user) but still make it a dynamic and fun car to drive - and those traits are not mutually exclusive to making it 'reasonably' satisfactory to get in and out of - as indeed you confirm your Evora is. 

 

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What I thought dumb was your inference, that I may have read wrong, that the current Lotus cars are just for masochists and so I, in a light hearted way by taking the piss out of myself, tried to explain that I do not think that Lotus cars are just for masochists.

So for that you call me dumb. I think you need to lighten up a bit.  As do I. But then I'm just tucking into one of the largest scones ever made - it's hard being married to a wonderful baker! So hard to lighten up.

Keep smiling. Keep safe.

 


Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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You seem to have misread my posts twice then. Because I did not call you 'dumb' in my first post 4 hours ago - and as far as I'm aware a 'mascochist' isn't necessarily 'dumb' - nor did I call you 'dumb' in the 2nd post 1 hour ago - I merely set out what my definition of 'dumb' was - in response to you setting out your own definition - which was that Lotus should NOT produce a car that only a masochist would want.

Keep safe too. 

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Both to your bedroom, no dinner, phones and iPads you leave down here with me 😂👍

  • Haha 2

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On 02/05/2020 at 12:51, PAR said:

For Lotus there are 2 potential markets, the over 100k market equivalent which is where the Esprit used to be and the 50-60k market where you compete with more traditional mass volume brands.

In the first category, prices keep going up for the leaders Ferrari and Mclaren as price sensitivity of customers is low (people would rather pay 150-200 for a dream car than 110 for a super good car)

To sell cars at more than 100k, the best chances Lotus has are probably electric cars as they would be early there and can be differentiated. Having the Evija has a halo car makes sense for that and it would be new customers.

for the 50-60k segment, they need so be able to have the volumes and to make good margins at those prices. I am pretty sure the investment in the factory is to make this possible but they will need have the network too. Probably feasible selling 10k car a year (basically 10x the current Elise volumes and what was about the peak volume for the Elise ever)

In my opinion, like Volvo, they have to do things differently from what is out there rather than just better as better will always be too difficult to judge.

As you say - it looks like Lotus are aiming for 10K plus https://europe.autonews.com/automakers/lotus-ceo-outlines-ambitious-production-expansion-plan-electric-future. I think Ferrari sold over 10k for the first time last year - and Aston Martin about 6.5k; so I can't help but think Lotus will need to aim at a majority of cars below the £100k range to get those kind of figures..

I agree that they will need to increase the dealer network, but I guess they could share some Volvo garages? Having said that Tesla see to be doing OK with few dealers - and I think (in the UK at least) Polestar are primarily looking at on-line sales - at least initially. 

 

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To clarify my post above.  I think the Exige handles better on a track and the Evora better on the road.  If paying over £100K for a car then I want both, otherwise I'd rather save the money and make a compromise with a Exige or Evora depending on which side of the compromise fence I wanted to be on. 

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