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Lotus unveils new Elise Cup 250


The new Elise Cup 250 employs the latest Elise look first seen on the Elise Sport and Elise Sprint, while changes to the exterior include a new lightweight front clam panel with wider radiator apertures and mesh pattern grille, and a new exterior panel with two light clusters instead of four.

The weight saving is due to the composition of materials used to create the Elise Cup 250 - a mix of carbon-fibre, titanium and aluminium combine not only to make the vehicle lighter, but also give the auto a stronger body shell.

The supercharged 1.8-litre Toyota-sourced four-cylinder engine still delivers 243 horsepower, but sounds fruitier thanks to exhaust tuning.

Further weight reduction still can be specified - a carbon aero pack comprising a front splitter, rear wing and side boards in carbon-fibre save 3.7 kg.

Close attention has been paid to the Cup 250's suspension; there are fully independent double wishbones and an anti-roll bar at the front, with higher damper rates than the Elise Sport and Sprint. It is connected to a six-speed manual transmission which allows the vehicle to accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in 3.9 seconds before hitting a top speed of 154 miles per hour (247 km/h). But if you want to have the all that famed Lotus lightness, you'll need to reach slightly further down the back of the sofa as all of those weight-saving options add up to £18,400.

Lotus hand-builds the carbon race seats, which it clads in Alcantara, or you can have leather or its cool 70s-style tartan for £1,000. They enable the Elise Cup 250 to produce 275 pounds (125 kg) of downforce at 140 miles per hour (225 km/h). The optional body kit generates 125kg of downforce at 140mph (225km/h).

Created to offer a "scintillating blend of purity" and performance, the model features a new front bumper with larger air intakes with mesh grille inserts.

Underneath, Eibach springs and uprated Bilstein dampers are fitted, as are AP Racing brakes with two-pot front calipers, plus lightweight forged alloy wheels wearing Yokohama Advan A048 LTS tyres.

The Lotus Elise may be 21 years old but the Norfolk sports vehicle firm is still finding ways to improve it. A Lotus rewards like no other auto, with sharp handling, tremendous speed and a pure, undiluted driving experience. Having been made from weight saving materials, this new performance Elise weighs 860kg - just a little more than an average dairy cow. Woof. That brings the grand total for the lightest version of the Cup 250 to £65,800.

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