Lotus has been synonymous with motorsports since its inception over 70 years ago and the journey continues even though a transformation to electric has just begun at the other end of the world.
The recently launched Lotus Emira sportscar will have a competition-spec GT4 challenger that is developed together with project partner RML Group.
The mid-engine racer uses the 3.5-litre Toyota 2GR-FE V6 engine with pressures boosted via a Harrop TVS 1900 supercharger. To promote a competitive field and placing the skills on drivers and strategy rather than machinery, a balance of performance (BOP) formula by FIA and race organisers will limit the engine output, with Lotus estimating 400 hp for now.
A 6-speed xTrac racing transmission with a paddle-shifting system will take care of gear shifting duties, with the driver viewing all vital dashboard information via Motec-supplied hardware with data-logging and bespoke motorsport wiring loom.
Stopping power includes a motorsport-specific ABS from Bosch activating on Alcon calipers and brake discs. Additional aerodynamic upgrades on the exterior include a large adjustable rear wing and front splitter. Extensive use of advanced composite materials on the exterior and interior ensures a healthy starting weight of 1,260 kg for the Lotus Emira GT4, which will be further adjusted following the BOP formula.
The Lotus Emira GT4 is expected to race around the world in 2022 with other FIA GT4-homologated racing machines such as the BMW M4 (F82), Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR, Toyota GR Supra, Mercedes-AMG GT, McLaren 570S as well as the Aston Martin Vantage AMR.
Lotus plants to increase production from 2023 in line with global demand and supply, as the return of motorsport is a key pillar of the company’s transformation. Earlier this year, Lotus Engineering, the consultancy division of the business, became technical partner to JBXE, the Extreme E race team led by F1 world champion Jenson Button.
A formal launch of the Lotus Emira GT4 will take place later this year at an event on the Hethel test track.