The fanatics at Lotus are at it again, releasing yet another iteration of the lightweight, high-performance Elise two-seat sports car.
The limited-edition Lotus Elise Cup 260 boasts a 250 horsepower supercharged 1.8-liter engine and a feathery mass of just 1,897 lbs., which combine to produce 0-60 mph acceleration in 3.8 seconds.
Additionally, the new car's aerodynamic aids boost downforce at top speed to nearly 400 lbs., providing cornering grip that lets the Elise Cup 260 shave 2.5 seconds off the lap time set by the Elise Cup 250 at the company's Hethel, England test track.
“Our philosophy for producing extraordinary vehicles is world famous, but the new Elise Cup 260 goes beyond what many believed possible from our smallest car," remarked Jean-Marc Gales, CEO, Group Lotus plc. "It is directly developed from the Elise race cars that are competing in series around the world, giving the ultimate Elise experience on the road. More power, motorsport components and the introduction of aerodynamics unheard of in its class make driving this Elise an unrivaled experience.
The 44 percent increase in downforce (compared to the Elise Cup 250) is due to components such as the new louvered front wheel-arch vents, a lightweight carbon fiber front splitter and a wide high-mounted rear wing that was developed for the Lotus 3-Eleven.
Lotus Motorsport pitched in, developing the Elise Cup 260's chassis, which employs two-way adjustable Nitron dampers and 10 mm-wider Yokohama Advan Neova AD08R performance tires for more cornering grip.
Unusually, the Cup 260 uses AP Racing front brakes and Brembos at the rear.
Lotus is only building 30 of the Elise Cup 260, so interested buyers will need to move quickly.