New Lotus Testing
Esprit Replacement gets an early runout!
These exclusive spy shots are the first clear pictures of the all-new replacement for the Lotus Esprit. Close examination of this experimental mule reveals a number of details.
This car – AU55 FTT – was first registered on 10 February this year and a 4.8-litre engine lurks within. This gives greater credence to the suggestions that the new Esprit will be powered by a version of the Alpina-fettled V8 found in the BMW X5 4.8S.
The newcomer is clearly several inches longer than the old model – as can be seen in the increased size of the side window. The front track is also much wider – visible in the extended front wheelarches. Much of the rear of the car is mocked up, but underneath lies the new aluminium chassis and part of the transmission cradle can be spotted behind the cutaway rear bumper.
The spy photographer said that the prototype had 'massive' damper units, thought to be the key element in a new active set-up for the car. A bespoke transmission system is also thought to incorporate launch control.
These picture below give a better view of the front of the car. Also you can see Lotus have fitted a Sport 350 spoiler. We've heard rumours that the new car will not have a wing or spoiler. But it's just a rumour. You can also see possible intercooler at the back of the rear deck. We've heard the first version maybe be natural aspirated, with the engine later being turbo charged. So maybe these are just cooling duct. As this obviously isn't the bodywork for the new car, modifications would have had to have been made.
If you see any more photos or info on this test mule, please email firstname.lastname@example.org