Lotus is marking two decades of the Elise sports car with the launch of a special 20th Anniversary Special Edition.
The Lotus Elise revolutionised the sports car world when it was first unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 1995, setting the benchmark for handling, purity of the driving experience, lightweight and efficiency.
Its pioneering and advanced bonded aluminium chassis was a market-leading technological innovation at the time and over the years has improved and evolved and remains core to the Elise's exceptional performance today.
Jean-Marc Gales, the CEO of Group Lotus plc, commented: "It is sometimes hard to believe that the Elise has been around for 20 years. It was ground breaking when it was launched and continues to be the benchmark for handling and performance in its class. Over the years we have improved and refined the Elise but we have also ensured that we have retained the purity of the driving experience and for the Elise to remain as the sports car to which other marques aspire."
The Elise 20th Anniversary, with its lightweight aero-optimised, composite body, is powered by a 1.8-litre supercharged engine. It reaches 0-100 kmh in 4.6 seconds and has a top speed of 237 kmh. The benefit of this light weight is that the Elise 20th Anniversary consumes just 5.9 litres / 100 km extra urban and emits just 173 g of CO2 per km.
Weighing just 914kg – 10kg less than the Elise S – the Elise 20th Anniversary is the sports car that both enthusiasts and newcomers to the brand will desire. Additional equipment compared to the Elise S comes as standard and is designed to reduce weight, including lightweight matt black forged wheels, lightweight centre console in body colour and lightweight sports seats in leather or Alcantara with colour coded stitching.
A sport mode is also included which increases throttle response and alters the traction slip thresholds allowing the driver enhanced control before intervention.
Four classic Elise colours are available in Blue, Green, Yellow and Silver and the rear diffuser, wing mirrors, roll hoop cover and rear transom are in matt black. Elise 20th Anniversary decals inside on the dashboard and seats and outside above the side indicator identify the anniversary special edition.
The Elise is the most successful Lotus model in terms of numbers built, with a total of almost 32,000 built and sold globally. In addition to the Elise, the Lotus small platform technology has been used to great success in the Lotus Exige, Lotus Europa and Lotus 2-Eleven models, all of which are, or have been manufactured by Lotus at its Headquarters in Hethel, Norfolk.
The second generation Elise was launched at the end of 2000 with styling that played homage to the Lotus M250 concept car. Power ranged from 119 kW to 143 kW depending on variant. The second generation Elise benefited from a major range of improvements in 2011 to produce the Elise that continues in production until today.