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The Emira: A remarkable farewell to the internal combustion engine for Lotus

Leading motoring journalist Steven Berry, a member of the Northern Group of Motoring Writers, takes a look at the all-new Emira from Lotus.

By LLM Reporters  |  November 22, 2021
Lotus-Emira

Words by Steven Berry

I was recently invited by Lotus to take a look at the all-new Emira at its Almada Street, Hamilton, showroom; and although there would be no opportunity for a drive, I was looking forward to seeing Lotus’s last-ever petrol-powered sports car in the flesh, so I headed off in the direction of Glasgow.

It certainly didn’t disappoint. Glossy images of this mid-engined, two-seater look amazing, but – as with most things of beauty – the Emira needs to be seen face-to-face to be fully appreciated.

The car on display – for myself and a select number of potential customers – was the high-spec First Edition launch version, equipped with a 3.5-litre, 400bhp V6 with manual six-speed transmission. There is an optional six-speed auto available, with paddle shift for the non-purists.

Finished in stunning Seneca blue, the car comes fully-loaded with a host of desirable technology, infotainment and comfort features plus unique badging. Costing £75,995, the first cars will be delivered to customers in the spring of 2022.

Later next year Lotus will offer a 4-cylinder, 2.0-litre version for £59,995, but for now the First Edition model is the only one you can spec.

Laura Montgomery, Lotus specialist commented: “The Emira is the most accomplished Lotus ever and we have had an amazing response to it from our customers. There is so much interest in it – people just love the design because it looks and feels like a proper Lotus. We can’t wait to have it back in the showroom again.”

The Emira features all the hallmarks that the automotive world has come to expect from a Lotus – striking design, thrilling dynamic performance delivering best-in-class ride and handling, outstanding aerodynamics and an unrivalled experience ‘For The Drivers’.

Building on the legacy of the Elise, Exige and Evora, the Emira represents a quantum leap forward for Lotus. Those instantly recognisable brand signatures and core values have been combined with a paradigm shift in levels of practicality, comfort, functionality and technology. The Emira has been developed on a new lightweight bonded aluminium chassis – technology pioneered by Lotus and which remains an intrinsic part of the company’s sports car DNA.

Powering the V6 First Edition is the much-loved and Lotus-honed 3.5-litre supercharged V6 engine, mid-mounted behind the two seats. Developing 400hp, it’s mated to a six-speed manual gearbox with a visible gearchange mechanism and hydraulic power-assisted steering.

The car rides on 20-inch ultra-lightweight V-spoke forged alloy wheels. They’re diamond cut to create a premium two-tone finish, though silver or gloss black versions are available as a no-cost option. Two-piece brake discs with branded calipers are part of the First Edition spec.

Exterior details include LED lights all round, a titanium exhaust finisher, heated power-fold door mirrors and rear parking sensors. The Lower Black Pack is fitted as standard, which means the front bumper air blades, front splitter, side sills and rear diffuser are all in finished in gloss black.

The First Edition comes in one of six vibrant paint colours: Seneca blue – as seen in the Lotus Glasgow showroom – plus magma red, hethel yellow, dark verdant (my own, personal favourite), shadow grey and nimbus grey. More colours will be available during 2022.

There are seven interior colour choices, all available at no extra cost. They are red, black, grey and tan Nappa leather, as well as black Alcantara with either red, yellow or grey stitching. Satin chrome trim finishers, white interior mood lighting and Lotus-branded sill kick plates complete the premium look.

Alastair Florance (group PR manager) and his team were on hand to answer questions and if how in-demand they were is anything to go by, then the Lotus factory in Hethel, Norfolk will be very busy indeed.

A wonderful and fitting end to age of petrol for Lotus, the Emira will be a rare sight on our roads – its exclusivity adding to it desirability.

For more information on the Lotus Emira, plus a configurator to spec and order your V6 First Edition, visit lotuscars.com. For more information on Lotus Glasgow, visit parks.uk.com/lotus/.

All imagery supplied by Lotus