The 2011MY Lotus Elise will feature a raft of new high tech features to keep the car on the grey stuff and pointing in the right direction for longer. With class and world leading handling the car has always been complimentary to the driver skills however when physics overtake talent some computers can aid and assist to try to keep you out of trouble.
Lotus DPM (Dynamic Performance Management) is an addition to the standard car from the entry level Elise 1.6 upwards and will offer stability not only when pressing on but more importantly when conditions change and road surfaces are incompatible with high levels of grip.
- Hydraulic Brake Assist – will detect emergency braking and increase braking if required to ensure maximum possible braking is used if required.
- Electronic Brake Distribution – will enhance stability by limiting rear brake pressures if the ABS is close to being activated when not required.
- Electronic Differential Lock – will ensure that if there is a road situation which leads to a wheel with less grip spinning then braking force is applied to this wheel to allow torque to be sent to the other wheel which means better cornering performance and acceleration on surfaces where one wheel can grip and the other cannot.
- Cornering Brake Control – is there to help when the car is heavily loaded at the front under partial braking and oversteer comes into play. The system will reduce brake pressure on an inside wheel or increase the braking pressure on the outside front wheel before the car becomes out of shape.
- Drag Torque Control – Too fast off the throttle or a snatched downshift can lead to the engine braking the wheels too quickly causing slip or oversteer if cornering. This innovative system will apply partial throttle to ensure stability.
- Anti-Lock Braking – is a common system on cars nowadays to reduce brake pressure if available braking torque is more than conditions allow to ensure that the shortest stopping distance possible is attained under all road conditions.
- Traction Control System – ensures no wheelspin under heavy acceleration.
- Vehicle Dynamic Control – will apply subtle brake pressure at the required wheel when the car becomes unstable.
This all adds up to a more stable car which can be driven harder when circumstances permit while keeping the car under the drivers control. They also add greatly to the safety of the car when the weather isn’t ideal and hopefully will mean bodyshops don’t see so many cars with requirements for new front clams, an all too common repair to the Elise. Die-hards will be pleased to know that most of the elements of DPM are switchable (apart from specific brake functions).
The good news is that the Lotus DPM is free, there is no extra cost involved!