Brief Year by Year History of the Esprit
- Worldwide introduction of Esprit S1, powered by the Lotus Type
907 engine. 1977
- Introduction of Lotus Esprit S2.
- Esprits are uprated with 2.2 liter engine and chassis guaranteed
for 5 years.
- Esprit S3 introduced for U.K. market. Uses chassis of the Turbo
- Importation of Lotus cars resumes to U.S. market. Introduction
of Turbo Esprit to U.S.
1988 - Heavily revised Esprit Turbo with new body and interior is introduced. Body construction stronger and formed with VARI process.
1989 - Esprit Turbo receives electronic Multi-port Fuel Injection (MPFI), distributorless ignition and stronger gearbox with improved gear ratios. - Esprit Turbo SE is introduced with 280 BHP chargecooled engine.
- Lotus Cars USA campaigns team of Esprit Turbo SE's in SCCA World
Challenge Cup. 4 wins (out of 8 races); two 1-2 wins; 6 pole positions.
- Doc Bundy, driving the Lotus Sport X180R, takes the Driver's title
in USA national sports car series (Bridgestone Potenza Supercar).
Tom Langeberg wins Dutch Production Car Series in Lotus Esprit
- Lotus Esprit S4 introduced -- new elegant bodyshell encloses dynamic
improvements such as power steering (standard).
- Lotus Esprit Sport 300 driven by Thorkild Thyrring wins the British
National GT series.
- Lotus Esprit sales worldwide buck static market, recording an
11% increase in the first six months against previous year.
- At the Geneva Auto Show Lotus introduces the Espirt V8, powered
by a purpose-built Lotus V8 engine. The 3.5 liter, twin-turbocharged
unit produces 350 hp at 6500 rpm and 295 lb ft of torque at 4250
rpm. The engine is impressively small, fitting comfortably inside
a cube 28" high, 28" wide and 24" long with all ancillaries in place.
Of modular design, the engine can support a 4-liter naturally aspirated
version as well as a family of V6 and four-cylinder engines.
- Lotus debuts its Espirt V8 PPG Pace Car at the North American
International Auto Show in Detroit. The car includes O.Z. Racing.
wheels, Euro headlamps and a unique PPG paint containing special
translucent particles held in suspension, allowing the paint to
change color from black to gold as light conditions vary.
- The 1998 Esprit V8 is unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show. A restyled
interior, new climate control unit, twin-plate clutch with revised
hydraulic actuation, modified gearbox and selector mechanism, refined
ABS system, new windshield wiper design, and upgraded alarm round
out the changes.
1999 - The Esprit 350 Sport is released boasting the lightest magnesium wheel in production today, a carbon fibre wing, upgraded brakes and a large weight saving over the V8. No power increase still having the 350bhp of the V8
2002 - The Esprit gets a Facelift for 2002, new wheels and rear light cluster are the main changes. Replaces V8-SE & V8-GT to leave just one model on sale at a reduced price of £49,995. US Market gets an 25th Anniversery model with centre exit exhaust.