- Lotus Elise crowned Champion as tens of thousands vote
- Award marks anniversary year of original Eliseís launch
- New Lotus Elise Sport starts from just £29,900
- Trophy will be on display first in Factory 8, then Factory 3 followed by
Factory 1 and Vulcan Road
Beating some of the best cars ever built, the landmark Lotus Elise has been
announced as Readersí Champion during the prestigious Autocar Awards, after tens
of thousands of motoring fans voted in an online competition.
From a starting roster of 50, the final shortlist of cars contained just ten
contenders and voting was tight as the two-week competition drew to a close.
Receiving the award during the Autocar Awards ceremony on Tuesday evening at
Silverstone, Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc said: ďWinning the Readersí
Champion Award shows what a key role the Elise continues to play in the
automotive industry. When it was launched it shook the rest of the automotive
industry into acknowledging and understanding the importance of lightweight when
producing class-leading sports cars Ė redefining the segment. It is one of the
all time greats which is always copied but never equalled.Ē
Group Lotus plc CEO, Jean-Marc Gales, accepting the award
Jim Holder, Editorial Director, Haymarket Automotive said, ďThe Lotus Elise
is a car that embodies all that Autocar and its readers love about sports cars,
combining pace, agility and a purity of purpose. Our testers named their
favourite 50 cars and tens of thousands of readers proceeded to choose the
winner. It was hotly contested, of course, but the Lotus Elise is a well
deserved Readersí Champion winner.Ē
The lightweight hand-built sports car from Hethel, Norfolk has long been
regarded as a benchmark for handling and performance and providing a level of
precision and driver involvement that rivals cannot match. Following the founder
of Lotus, Colin Chapmanís engineering principles of performance through light
weight, the Elise is perfectly tuned for demanding British roads, providing a
pure yet involving and agile driving experience. The latest model, the Elise Cup
250 reaches 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds yet produces only 175 g/CO2 per 100 km.
With prices starting at under £30,000 for the Sport edition, the Lotus Elise
also proves that outstanding hand built British sports cars donít have to cost a
The Autocar Readersí Champion Award not only coincides with the anniversary of
the carís first year on sale, but also with the 50th celebration of the move to
the companyís famous factory in Hethel. As the spiritual home of the Elise, itís
another reason for the company and its millions of fans to celebrate in 2016.
About the Lotus Elise
Unveiled at the Frankfurt motorshow in 1995, the Lotus Elise arrived on roads in
1996, winning praise from both journalists and enthusiasts for its pure and
undiluted driving experience. Over 32,000 Lotus Elise sports cars have left the
factory since launch, and the car remains the famous brandís most enduring
The high tech chassis that underpins the Elise, was ahead of its time when
introduced, and continues to represent a significant step forward in chassis
design. Based on the use of extruded and bonded aluminium sections, the
resulting chassis is both tremendously strong and torsionally stiff and weighs
just 68 kg.
However, rather than rest on the carís plaudits, Lotus has continually enhanced
and evolved the Elise ensuring that today the 2016 models represent the ultimate
iteration of the Elise to date, being lighter and faster than the cars they
As the starting point of the range, the Elise Sport delivers outstanding
performance for under £30,000, and is capable of 0-60 mph in 6.0 seconds.
Employing lightweight construction, and aerodynamically optimised bodywork it
provides pin-sharper handling, and great body control, but not at the expense of
ride comfort and composure.
At the top of the range sits the fastest road-going Lotus Elise ever, the Lotus
Elise Cup 250. Weighing just 931 kg, and capable of 0-60 mph in 3.9 seconds,
itís available as either a coupe or roadster. Customers wanting to cut the carís
weight still further, and so boost performance, can select the optional Carbon
Aero Pack and Lithium-ion battery to reduce the vehicleís mass to just 921 kg.
Every new Lotus Elise customer can personalise their vehicle through the Lotus
Exclusive programme. Developed by the Lotus Design team, it combines traditional
British craftsmanship with the best of modern design. Conceived to inspire
customers, allowing them to tailor vehicles to their personal taste, it offers a
comprehensive array of options and provides an alluring alternative to an
off-the-peg sports car.
Images copyright Group Lotus PLC