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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Lotus Reveals Fastest Exige Ever: Meet The New Sport 380

The new Lotus Exige Sport 380 represents the lightest, most aggressive version of the British mid-engined sports car to date.

Not that the current Exige models lacked anything in the aggressive department but Lotus knows how to push further the envelope, with the new Sport 380 able to reach 60mph from a standstill in 3.5 seconds (0-100km/h in 3.7sec) and top out at 178mph (286km/h).

Lotus says that their new supercar-killing machine weighs just 1,066kg, which is 25kg less than the Exige Sport 350. This became possible with the use of lots of carbon fibre parts throughout the car, with the Exige Sport 380 featuring a new front splitter, revised front access panel, new rear wing and rear diffuser surround made out of it which together saved 2.7 kg.

Additional savings came from things like a new polycarbonate rear window (-0.9kg), a set of carbon race seats (-6kg), a lithium-ion battery (-10.3kg) and a set of ultra-light forged wheels and grooved two-piece brake discs (-10kg). Lotus even revised the rear fascia with a new design that now allows only two rear light clusters instead of four on the Exige Sport 350, cutting a further 0.3kg.

The Toyota-sourced supercharged 3.5-litre V6 engine has been updated as well and now produces 375hp at 6,700rpm and 410Nm (302lb-ft) of torque at 5,000rpm. The changes include a revised supercharger pulley which increases the charge pressure, an uprated fuel pump, recalibrated ECU and a new exhaust system to let the engine express itself more freely. Lotus even enlarged the fuel tank to 48 litres of capacity, allowing this way its customers to enjoy their Exige for longer between fuel stops.

Another cool upgrade is of course the use of Lotus’ latest open-gate design in the six-speed manual gearbox. This aims to offer faster and cleaner gear changes, with the new mechanism said to eliminate lateral movement with precisely aligned components made from lightweight machined and cast aluminum. The gearbox itself is enhanced with a new oil cooler. There is also a six-speed automatic gearbox option that will become available in spring 2017.

The new Lotus Exige Sport 380 also wears a new aero agenda that help increase downforce by a massive 60 percent over the Sport 350 model, generating 140kg at maximum speed. This downforce increase though doesn’t come at the penalty of drag, as Lotus claims it remains the same with the Sport 350.

Lotus will offer the new Exige Sport 380 in ten individual colors while customers that go often to the track can choose the Track Pack option which adds a set of Nitron two-way adjustable dampers. Pricing in the UK starts from £67,900, with the new Lotus Exige Sport 380 asking from €89,900 in Germany and ¥12,760,000 in Japan.


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