Lotus cars are often compared to Porsches. The Elise to the Boxster, the Exige to the Cayman and to a lesser extent the Evora to the 911. Until now, though, Lotus hasn’t had the development budget to match the Stuttgart brand in every way that matters to buyers.
A new – and huge – round of investment from new parent company Geely could change that. A rumoured £2bn chunk of cash from China is said to be aimed at turning Lotus into a true range-wide Porsche rival with a series of sports cars, executive cruisers and SUVs.
Firstly the money would transform the Hethel headquarters and add a second facility in the English West Midlands, with a host of new staff at both sites. As many as 200 more engineers could come on board, according to reports.
Geely is aiming to take on more than the 51 per cent stake it currently owns, signalling its desire to succeed with the English sports car maker. Better to buy shares now rather than wait until they’re more expensive.
Secondly, Lotus’ range, which has long been the butt of ‘new-but-not’ jokes, will get a complete overhaul, with further lines added. We can expect the hardcore, small-volume cars Lotus is known for to be dialled back slightly to widen their appeal in the face of Porsche’s more refined rivals. A new flagship is already due in 2020, with an SUV to follow a year or two later.
The SUV has already been targeted not-so-secretly at Porsche’s Macan. A Cayenne-sized big brother could join it later in the 2020s.
Source: Motor Authority