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Autocar's Best Driver Car of 2018


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“Before I explain why a Lotus Exige 410 came only eighth in a contest plenty might reasonably have expected it to win, I should say first that, in points terms, it left the Fiesta and Jag for dead and was hot on the heels of the cars that occupied the two places immediately above it. Even so, and despite knowing plenty about all these contenders well in advance, we’d expected more of the lightweight Lotus. 

There was, of course, plenty that it did just right. Its body control on both road and track was pretty awesome, its apex speed even more so. Saunders celebrated “the simplicity and honesty” of its character, a trait every judge could relate to. Despite our reservations, it still felt like a proper Lotus, and there is always something to be celebrated in that. But when our attentions turned from road to track, where you’d expect a car such as this to excel, problems remained, as witnessed by the fact that just one judge rated its circuit performance above 19 out of 25. 

In short it was hard work, physically just to hoof it around the circuit and mentally to keep it properly balanced. We’re all up for a brain and body workout but the rewards have to be there – and the Exige, for all its raw speed, came up slightly short. Even in race mode, it understeered too much on entry and lacked traction at exit. Surely with this much potential, a limited-slip differential would have been desirable?”

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From my 4 years of V6 Exige ownership, including quite a few Trackdays, I certainly agree it is hard work on track but, for me anyway, I always felt it was quite rewarding. On a full day, I rarely managed to get much beyond mid afternoon before becoming too knackered and having to call it a day. Having said that though, the Exige was always huge fun and although I am not the quickest driver, by any means, I rarely found it wanting for much on the days I did in it. 

I love my Evora 410 but I’d love to be in a position to have my old V6 Exige alongside it, just for track days. 

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52 minutes ago, Spinney said:

From my 4 years of V6 Exige ownership, including quite a few Trackdays, I certainly agree it is hard work on track but, for me anyway, I always felt it was quite rewarding. On a full day, I rarely managed to get much beyond mid afternoon before becoming too knackered and having to call it a day. Having said that though, the Exige was always huge fun and although I am not the quickest driver, by any means, I rarely found it wanting for much on the days I did in it. 

I love my Evora 410 but I’d love to be in a position to have my old V6 Exige alongside it, just for track days. 

You possibly should have looked at the GT430 

Darryl & Sue

Proud to drive and own since new a true British supercar the Evora GT430

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13 hours ago, DarrylV8 said:

You possibly should have looked at the GT430 

I did but as said before, I dismissed the idea as, for the type of use it would get, I didn’t consider it worth the extra cost. I stopped doing trackdays earlier this year, for a few reasons so, much as I would love  to have my Exige back, I wouldn’t now do any more track sessions with it even if I did.

I was talking about an imaginary ‘ideal’ world for myself that various circumstances have contrived to now prevent. 

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I should, maybe, qualify that last post of mine with regard to 430 vs 410 and be a bit clearer about the reasons for my ultimate choice. Having now stopped doing trackdays, I intend using the Evora mainly for long distance touring in Europe with my wife. As such, the 430 would have been a bit wasted as it wouldn’t provide any significant benefit over the 410; plus I can use the additional money it would have cost for yet another good holiday. 😊

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11 minutes ago, nerobi said:

Maybe the journalists forgot what to do when they get a car without EPAS, automatic gearbox and such.

Totally agree with that. They've become used to auto boxes and cars that do everything for you.

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