> New Lotus Emira revealed
> Mid-engined, lightweight sports car
> Replaces the iconic Lotus Elise
> AMG turbocharged 2.0-litre or Toyota supercharged 3.5-litre V6
> Will arrive in 2022 to take on the Porsche Cayman and 911
The Lotus Emira is the first model to be delivered as part of the British firm's Vision80 strategic plan, as it nears its 80th birthday in 2028. It'll take on cars like the Porsche Cayman and 911.
The Emira's design is hugely influenced by the firm's recent hypercar, the Evija. At the front, you can see its pinched, sleek front end with deep air intakes and raked back LED headlights. There's also a new Lotus badge that's slightly larger than on previous models.
At the side, the Emira's raked windscreen and sloping roof are the main event, but you'll also notice another set of gaping air intakes ahead of the rear wheels. Speaking of wheels, the Emira gets 20-inch alloys as standard, but with a choice of tyres depending on how aggressive you want things.
Finally, at the back, the Emira has a whopping great diffuser and twin chunky exhaust tips. Just above sit the exits for the rear air vents and above that a striking LED rear light design featuring a 'bar' brake light and a small spoiler flick for better aerodynamics.
Of course, there's also that wonderful rear window through which to view the Emira's engine and illuminated Lotus motif.
As with everything else, the interior of the Emira is all-new. It's been designed to put the driver at the centre of the experience, with its wraparound dash ensuring all the controls and dials are easily seen and reached.
Lotus says the quality inside is far better than any of its previous cars, with premium materials and a precise fit and finish.
A lovely-looking multifunction, flat-bottom, Alcantara sports steering wheel is also present and correct, as are a set of deep sports seats that get electric movement as standard and more cool illuminated Lotus motifs.
Another nice touch is an exposed gear linkage on manual V6 models, although pictures are yet to be released of that. Also, notice the red engine start/stop button just in front.
A brand new 10.25-inch central infotainment screen and a 12.3-inch screen for the digital driver's dials are also included. Lotus says all the menus and graphics have been designed in-house and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are included.
Lotus has also teamed up with Kef to offer an optional sound system with 10 speakers.
The Emira is a two-seat sports car that's focused on being as good as possible to drive. This is never a good recipe for fantastic space and practicality, but buyers will know it.
Still, Lotus reckons the door bins can take a 500ml bottle, there are a couple of generous cupholders between the two seats together with a phone slot and a decent glovebox and a handy tray in front behind the gear lever.
In terms of storing luggage, Lotus says there are 208 litres behind the front seats inside the cabin, or a 151-litre boot behind that'll take a medium suitcase or set of golf clubs.
Lotus says there will be two engine options for the Emira: either a 360hp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine borrowed from Mercedes-AMG or a 400hp 3.0-litre supercharged V6 from Toyota that Lotus fans will be familiar with already. A maximum torque figure of 430Nm has been revealed, which we assume is for the turbo 2.0-litre.
Although it's borrowed, Lotus has taken the time to tune the AMG engine to its own specs, plus replaced the air intake and exhaust system to make it unique.
The 2.0-litre will come with AMG's eight-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, while the V6 will come as either a six-speed manual or six-speed torque converter automatic. All cars will be rear-wheel drive.
A 0-62mph time of less than 4.5 seconds has been revealed, which we assume is for the lighter, dual-clutch-box and launch-control equipped 2.0-litre. The top speed is said to be as much as 180mph, which could be either.
Most importantly regards a Lotus – is it light? Well, a figure of 1405kg in its lightest form has been quoted, which is lighter than a Porsche Cayman, let alone the much chunkier 911. It's also an EU DIN figure, which accounts for the fluids required and a driver on board.
The Emira gets an aluminium chassis and has the widest track of any Lotus to date. Two suspension set-ups are available – Tour, which blends performance with comfort for everyday use, or an optional Sports set-up as part of the Lotus Drivers Pack, which gets a stiffer suspension setting.
A hydraulic steering system is standard no matter which you choose, and there's a plethora of safety systems included such as blind-spot assist and lane-keep tech.
Lotus has still yet to reveal all of the exacting details relating to pricing, but we do know that this all-new sports car will cost from £59,995 – what exactly that gets you is still unknown. The aim is to be competitive with the 2.0-litre Porsche Boxster.
Something we do know is that a V6-powered First Edition car will set you back £75,995 and come equipped with two-tone alloy wheels, contrasting trims, and a standard ‘design pack’. This car will come with the choice of an automatic or manual transmission.
You can order an Emira right now with deliveries expected in sprint 2022.