Lotus 2-Eleven not hardcore enough for you? The Norfolk sports car maker yesterday whisked the covers off the GT4 Supersport race car. It's a £78k track version that's designed to compete in the European SRO GT4 Supersports series.
£78k for a stripped-out Lotus Elise?
It is quite a lot when you put it like that, but don't forget this is a fully fledged race car, with composite bodywork, uprated suspension, full rollcage, power boost and a six-speed sequential gearbox. Only ten will be built.
You get an extra 15 ponies, the Sport version cranking out a wholesome 266bhp and 182lb ft. The uplift is credited to revised induction and exhaust systems, plus increased boost from the supercharger. And keeping the lightweight 2-Eleven stuck to the track is a new aero pack, that delivers a tenth of car's kerbweight – 80kg – in downforce at 100mph.
Lotus financial results 2007-08
As well as announcing a new car this week, the Norfolk firm also confirmed it made £2 million profit in the last financial year. Although that figure excludes R&D costs, it's unusually sunny news in a quarter where car companies are losing money left, right and centre in the doom and gloom of the creeping global recession.
Lotus put the turnaround – it lost £4.9m in 2006-07 – down to the arrival of new product, successful engineering consultancy projects and an effective new five-year plan.