A LOTUS you can drive every day that looks awesome, pedals like a supercar and runs a six speed automatic gearbox that’s as good, if not better than a manual. Can I get a ‘hell yeah’?
The car we speak of is the 2017 Lotus Evora 400 Hethel Edition, a $200,000 weapon that pushes out 298kW of power and 410Nm of torque through a completely redesigned 6-speed push button automatic transmission.
Under the boot lid of this mid-engine beast is a 3.5 litre Toyota-based V6 engine, and yes it’s the same one that you will find in a top-of-the-line Aurion or Tarago. But this V6 has a secret. A thumping brand new Edelbrock supercharger kind of secret that makes it sound like an angry F1 car.
As a result it goes like the clappers, rounding out a zero-100 run in 4.2 seconds, and the pick up in this 2+2 coupe, especially in sports mode, is nothing short of astounding. In fact we recommend you don’t drive it in normal mode, ever. Because if you like adrenalin pumping driving, standard drive will feel quite lazy.
But all this speed, and power, and sport and track mode are not the most important thing about the Lotus Evora 400. What’s more important is this car has four seats, is easy to get in and out of, has the trim levels you’d equate to a decent sports car, and wait for it – you could drive it every day.
Yes you could actually have this as your daily drive, and we suppose you could use standard drive mode for that if you really had to. This car is a joy to drive. It turns heads with its unique styling (perhaps not as many heads as the 2017 Lotus Exige 350 Sport) and is a rare beast as well, with just a dozen or so on the road in Australia.
Let’s pause all this driving talk for a moment though, and get down to the important information about what the car comes with.
To make sure you stop, there are big 2-piece AP Racing four-piston calipers (front and rear) with ventilated and cross-drilled rotors, along with a lightweight low inertia flywheel, electronic brake distribution, a Lotus tuned ABS system, and driver selectable ESP modes, including drive, sport and race.
Lightweight alloy wheels (19-inch front, 20-inch rear) with Michelin Pilot Sport tyres will keep you on the road, while the fully independent forged aluminium double wishbone suspension with anti roll bar will keep you steady, and Bilstein high performance dampers with Eibach coaxial springs will make it bounce right.
Did we mention the seats, door panels, fascia and centre console are trimmed in red leather? No, well they are, and the steering wheel is trimmed in black leather, with red leather position stripe.
On the downside, the infotainment system is super aftermarket, but does bring with it SatNav and a reversing camera. The final finish is good but not great across the dash and the layout takes a bit of getting used to. It has also got some seriously stiff competition for the coin, including the F-TYPE Jaguar and Porsche Cayman.
But neither are quite like the Evora 400, and you may have guessed already, it’s not about the techy bits or how the dash looks, it’s about the roar of the engine, the noise of the exhaust, and the pure driving pleasure that the Lotus brings, and it’s ravishing good looks on the outside.
There’s more to owning the Evora 400 though. You see Lotus Cars Australia has created the Lotus Lifestyle – an owner’s club if you like, to help owners get the most out of their vehicles that’s a bit like a family. The Lotus Lifestyle offers social outings, exclusive events, casual track days, driver tuition, road rallies, and even the opportunity for competitive motor sport at various levels.
Lotus Cars Australia has a national dealer network that includes Simply Sports Cars in Sydney, Motorline in Brisbane, Krause Motors in Adelaide, Zagame in Melbourne, and Auto-Strada in Perth.
The 2017 Lotus Evora 400 comes in Solid Red, Solid Yellow, Metallic Silver, Signature Silver, Racing Green, Metallic Grey, Metallic Orange, Metallic White, Metallic Black and Metallic Blue (as tested).
Our 2017 Lotus Evora 400 was provided by Simply Sports Cars in Sydney. To find out more, contact the Lotus Cars Australia dealer in your state. Images supplied by La Lente Photography.
Road Test: 2017 Lotus Evora 400
Pros – sports mode auto is astoundingly good; steering is on point; quick – like supercar quick.
Cons – gearbox feels lazy in standard drive mode; infotainment system not user friendly; interior finish good but not great.