July 5, 2014
The first-ever Lotus superbike melds raw power and sci-fi sleekness.
Lotus earned its legendary racing stripes by building stylish, stripped-down roadsters, but the British automaker’s first two-wheeler is more badass than we could ever have imagined. The Lotus C-01 was designed by Daniel Simon, who conceived the futuristic Light Cycles in Tron Legacy, and its carbon-fiber torso is as eye-catching as Olivia Wilde in a glow-in-the-dark catsuit. Lotus is making only 100 of them, at $137,740 a pop. Here’s a breakdown of why they’re worth every penny.
1. Wild Horses
With a snarling 1,195 cc V-twin engine and a total bike weight of just 400 pounds, it delivers the approximate power-to-weight ratio of a Tomahawk missile, hitting speeds of nearly 200 mph.
2. Pedigreed Paint
The C-01’s paint schemes pay homage to classic Lotus Formula 1 race cars, including the Lotus British Racing Green and Yellow, Martini, and John Player Special Edition (pictured).
3. Stay Cool
“Dry sump lubrication” isn’t nearly as disturbing as it sounds. In fact, it’s a method of pumping oil into the engine to keep the motor from melting when high-performance maneuvers starve it of lubricants.
4. Hard Body
The C-01’s entrails are held together by aerospace-grade steel, carbon fiber, and titanium—exotic materials you’re more likely to find on a NASA spacecraft than a street-legal motorcycle.