Lotus’s longest established dealership, Bell & Colvill opened the doors of their showroom for 2 days recently to allow potential customers the chance to get close to the MY12 Evora in both manual and IPS variants and try for themselves the updated and improved car. With the Evora model now having been available for over two and a half years Lotus have put in place a number of improvements as outlined in our recent ‘Evora Reloaded‘ article, all aimed at bringing the quality of the car higher with the focus on driver engagement and involvement.
TLF are swapping from the MY11 IPS into the MY12 S IPS in a couple of weeks for the long term test but this was a chance to get an early look at the car and the opportunity to take it for a short drive. Settling into the car the first thing noticed is the new steering wheel. Now more shaped and moulded to encourage a strong grip of the wheel the impression of sportiness is instant, very nice! The seats are also a pleasure to settle into, a very significant visual step in the right direction and certainly befitting a car at this price with lots of detail and very attractive red stitching, the multi-paneled adding to stability along with what feel like stronger bolsters pinning you in place. The black masks on the dash and gearchange panels are a classy addition and look and feel well made, along with the optioned black headlining creating a quiet different feel to the interior. Also the infotainment system is taking steps in the right direction with the Alpine unit now completely replaced with a Pioneer touchscreen satnav/radio/DVD although I didn’t get much a chance to try it out, more of that in the long term car.
Starting the car, the S model has it’s usual growl on the throttle on your behalf and it’s immediately apparent that significant work has gone into how the car sounds. Press ‘Sport’ and the valved exhaust opens valves and the RPM raises slightly giving a noticeable change in pitch and volume but tap the throttle and the response is very quick with a really appealing rasp to the note, characteristic of a more cylinder-ed car for sure, a real head turner of a noise. You’ll tap the throttle again, just because you can, this car sounds properly nice! Gathering some pace it’s obvious that you’re in a supercharged car and towards the top end of the rev range the whine from the Harrop unit is evident and being back on P-Zero Corsa’s makes a massive difference, there’s so much grip and the car feels a lot more planted than on winter tyres in the warm as our IPS now has fitted. 5 minutes up the road and back, it’s clear that the car has evolved but wait for our huge update in 2 weeks with all the details included and how the car feel after some serious miles.
It all adds up to plenty of excitement about our imminent upgrade, this car looks, sounds and feels like a real supercar, it’s an incredible drive. Can’t wait!