You'll Never Catch This Extra-Fast Lotus Exige

The unbearable lightness of being Lotus gets even lighter.
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The unbearable lightness of being Lotus gets even lighter.
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Lotus founder Colin Chapman espoused the benefits of "adding lightness" to his cars as a means to boost performance, and his successors at the company have applied that philosophy to the freshly lightened Exige Sport 350.

This latest edition of the sports car, which is sadly no longer available in the U.S., trims away 112 lbs. from the previous Exige S, bringing the car's already low weight down to 2,480 lbs. By comparison, a PorscheCayman weighs 2,976 lbs.

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"The Lotus Exige is already regarded as one of the world's best sports cars and a benchmark for performance and handling both on road and on track," observed current Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales. "With the Exige Sport 350 we took an already phenomenally quick car and made it even faster, more dynamic and more pure, perfectly demonstrating our Lotus design philosophy of 'lighter and faster'."

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The company sliced mass from the Exige by using new, lighter forged wheels, stripping out sound deadening and substituting a lighter battery and lighter engine mounts. A new center console even exposes the inner mechanism of the shifter.

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The car's supercharged 345-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 is untouched, but the reduced mass cuts 0-60 mph acceleration time to just 3.7 seconds. The car's top speed is 170 mph. A convertible version is planned for next year, but neither it nor the coupe are slated to come to the U.S.

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Photos by Lotus Cars