Lotus 2-Eleven? What's all that about?
Colin Chapman always wanted performance through light weight, so he'd be justifiably proud of the new 2-Eleven track-day special, unveiled today and on sale in April. It weighs a scant 670kg and produces a solid 252bhp from its supercharged 1.8. Lotus proudly claims that's the sort of power-to-weight clout that its 1960s F1 cars enjoyed, so it'll be electrifyingly quick: standstill to 60mph in 3.8sec, and it'll hit 100 in just 9.1sec. Thank the composite bodywork for that flyweight mass - the panels weigh just 40kg, and can be bolted on for ease or repair when you spin into something unforgiving on a track day.
So what's the 2-Eleven based on? Is it another Elise variant?
As you can tell from its pared-back appearance, the 2-Eleven is aimed squarely at the hard-core track-day user. Underneath that minimal body lies an Exige chassis, and the familiar Toyota engine, bolstered by extra oil and fuel pumps to develop 179lb ft at a heady 7000rpm. The roadgoing version is fitted with front and rear lights and a catalytic converter, but track-day variants have a high-downforce rear wing, deeper front splitter and a race seat. To be honest, if you're going to drive this car every day on the road, you deserve respect; the Exige itself is hard-core enough for most people in the real world...
So how much is this track-day specialist?
The 2-Eleven will sell from £39,995. You'll have hours of fun, honing your new track-day toy, as the suspension is fully adjustable. Ohlins dampers and the front anti-roll bar can all be tweaked, depending on the driving conditions. Sticky Yokohama A048 tyres wrapped around forged black alloys complete the track-day makeover. CAR Online will drive the latest Lotus soon after its debut at next week's Geneva show; full road test coming soon.