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Fastest Lotus Elise yet unveiled

Lightweight two-seater boasts sub 4.0-sec 0-60mph time.

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The Lotus Elise Cup 250 has been revealed as the fastest four-cylinder sports car ever produced by the Norfolk brand.

Dealers are already taking orders for the car that promises a 0-60mph time of 3.9 seconds from its 1.8-litre 243hp engine.

For road and track

Lotus describes the Elise Cup 250 as bridging the gap between road and track, offering race car capability in a car usable every day.

Joining the already released Exige Cup 380, the Lotus Elise Cup 250 gains similar aerodynamic improvements. These include a new lightweight rear wing, front splitter, bargeboards and rear diffuser contributing to 125kg of downforce at 140mph.

The car’s dry weight is reduced to 884kg, thanks to the use of carbon fibre, titanium and aluminium. Revised dampers and lightweight forged wheels, shod with Yokohama performance tyres, also feature.

The latest Elise visual treatment, debuted earlier in 2017 on the standard car, includes wider front radiator inlets and a mesh-pattern grille, and two instead of four rear light clusters.

The reveal of the Elise Cup 250 comes just as Lotus looks set to acquire new owners with Chinese giant Geely, which owns Volvo, taking a controlling stake in the brand.

Announcing the new car, Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales describes it as the latest edition in an exciting period for the company.

“We know what existing Lotus enthusiasts demand from our cars and we are also bringing in many new customers who can see clearly that we offer an unrivalled combination of performance, styling, dynamics and value for money,” Galles says.

“The power and aerodynamic prowess of the new Elise Cup 250 has taken the fight beyond the reach of lesser rivals and, at just 860kg, it shows that we are ahead of the curve in delivering lightweight, intelligently engineered sports cars,” he adds.

Prices for the Lotus Elise 350 Cup start from £47,400.

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Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is a road test editor for The Car Expert. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.