As to the exterior design, led by Steve Crijns, it looks simply great and very Lotus. There's a little Artega GT in addition to the three-quarter-scale F430, but the Lotus trademarks carry through in the integrated rear wing, rear fascia design, and big integrated hood and rear quarter breathing vents. The doors are cut high and open wide, while the side sills are an inch narrower and placed lower down versus their orientation on Elise/Exige, easing the notoriously difficult Lotus ingress and egress. This latter narrowing and lowering has given the Evora profile a famous and recognizable shape.

The best recent annual report showed Lotus selling 2,633 total cars in the 2006-2007 fiscal year. Adding Evora on a dedicated line will add no more than 2,000 units per year in volume, though for Lotus it's a massive deal. And then comes the Evora roadster in 2010 and the definitive new Esprit supercar after that.

I can only selfishly say: Now, go, Lotus! Grow and thrive and expand the herd. And stop just nobly trickling along accepting your fate. This anxious world needs a lot more Lotus-style excitement inflicted upon it.

Lotus Evora
* Layout
Transverse mid-engine, rear-wheel drive

* Engine
3.5-liter V6, dohc, 24-valve, dual VVT-i, Lotus T6e ECU

* Transmission
Manual six-speed

* Suspension
F/R: Double-wishbone setup with short upper arms, Bilstein dampers and Eibach springs

* Brakes
F/R: AP Racing four-piston aluminum calipers; 13.8-inch rotors (f), 13.1-inch rotors (r)

* Wheels and Tires
One-piece Rimstock forged alloys, 18-inch (f), 19-inch (r)
Yokohama Advan Sport LTS tires, 225/40ZR18 (f), 255/35ZR19 (r)

* Exterior
All-fiberglass body, front splitter, rear diffuser, integrated rear wing

* Interior
Full leather, Recaro sport bucket seats, rear foldable bench seat, acoustic roof liner

Peak Power: 276 hp @ 6400 rpm
Peak Torque: 252 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm
0-60 mph: 4.9 sec.
Top Speed: 155+ mph
*mfr data

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