Is Lotus Planning an \u2018Everyday\u2019 Model?
With a very modest annual output and a very dedicated following, Lotus has rarely felt the pressure to produce a volume model or make concessions to the trends of the hour. But this doesn’t mean that Lotus isn’t thinking about more practical cars that can be used on the daily commute without compromise. (Of course, it depends on what one’s criteria is for everyday usage: Plenty of Lotus owners will say that their cars are perfectly fine for everyday use.)
But Lotus is now working on just such a new model, designed to be both affordable and offer enough room for everyday errands, Bloomberg reports. The boutique automaker plans to use the Evija design cues in the model that will be priced from 55,000-100,000 pounds, which translates to about $67,000-$123,000. This suggests that the new model will still be a coupe, rather than an SUV or some other body style, even though Lotus is still believed to be working on a compact SUV aimed primarily at the Chinese market. The SUV was already spotted testing earlier in 2019 disguised as one of the Lynk & Co models from corporate parent Geely, which also owns Volvo.
The entry-level sports car with space for everyday use, on the other hand, may target the likes of the Porsche 718 duo, which has had an iron grip on this segment for the past decade.
Lotus’ current entry-level model is the Evora, the first version of which debuted a decade ago and has been through an evolution, culminating in the Evora GT currently offered stateside. The new model contemplated by Lotus is likely to be larger than the Evora, which offers modest accommodations for one driver and one passenger and not much room for cargo or anything else.
Will this new model be a concession by Lotus to a less performance-focused audience?
It’s one thing for Lotus to intend to build an everyday car, and quite another for buyers to treat it as such—Lotus is still a very niche marque with a tiny annual production volume. The upcoming SUV model is already seen as a concession to the market tastes of the day and to those who want to see a volume model from the traditionally picky brand that hasn’t been concerned with trying to please all types of drivers.
Time will tell if Lotus will be able to grow into a more accessible role, as it concerns affordability and everyday use, but the company currently has quite a lot of options thanks to backing from corporate parent Geely. Being able to pursue unexplored segments is itself a new strength for the automaker.
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