FOUR new vehicle architectures, a technology roadmap, a fresh global identity and the name of a new car. These were the major announcements from Lotus at its special global virtual conference, known as Driving Tomorrow.
The first big piece of news was confirmation from Lotus that its all new sports car, to date known only by its codename, Type 131, will be called the Emira. Pronounced ‘E-meer-a’, the word features in ancient languages and often translates as ‘commander’ or ‘leader’.
The Emira will be unveiled on Tuesday 6 July at the Lotus Advanced Performance Centre, Hethel, Emira’s production home, and will make its public dynamic debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on 8-11 July.
Lotus has also confirmed that, contrary to media speculation, the car will not be a hybrid. The Emira will be powered by a choice of internal combustion engines – the last time Lotus will launch an ICE car – with an exciting new powertrain partnership.
The additional powertrain option will be new to Lotus, highly efficient, use cutting edge technology and be tuned to help deliver that distinctive Lotus experience.
With a distinctive new design influenced by the Lotus Evija hypercar, Emira marks the acceleration of the brand’s product-led offensive into a new era of contemporary design, highly efficient powertrains, everyday usability and explosive performance.
The Emira is built on one of four new architectures, developed by Lotus to support a range of future vehicles. It will sit on their new sports car or Elemental platform, a flexible, lightweight base designed to underpin next generation performance cars.
It’s joined by the hypercar, or Extreme platform, on which the fully electric Evija sits. The Premium, or Evolution architecture will provide a first ever truly global automotive platform for Lotus, and will be the basis for a new range of lifestyle vehicles (like SUVs).
The final platform, known internally as E-Sports, is an electric sports car architecture development in partnership with Renault’s Alpine brand. A flexible and modular setup, it will be the basis of a new electric sports car, to be utilised across both brands.
An all-new technology road map of five principles – dubbed EAS-IP – has also been created by Lotus to guide their future direction.
The principles include Electrify (for the brand’s pure electric future), Amplify (for innovative technology), Simplify, Intensify (for human interface design), and Personify (for brand identity).
In addition to the development of new Lotus models and technologies, the car maker is also transforming how it takes its innovations to market. The most obvious example of this is the launch of a stunning new Lotus retail identity program.
Uniquely Lotus and defiantly disruptive, the new retail identity draws directly on the brand’s design and engineering prowess to create a bold and original new showroom environment that’s sculptural and artistic in its execution.
The new retail identity is integrated into a 360-degree Lotus digital brand experience for customers, part of a seamless multi-channel retail strategy. Working with new retail partners, it will take Lotus to more global markets than ever before.
“Launching an all-new visual identity for our retail partners is another hugely exciting step in our transformation of the Lotus brand,” Lotus executive director of sales and aftersales, Geoff Dowding said.
“The inherent flexibility of what we have created will be perfect for all environments, whether they’re solus or multi-franchise, urban or out-of-town, high street or shopping mall, single or multi-storey, pop-up, seasonal or permanent.”