Lotus celebrates 50 years with special Elise

Elise 250 Special Edition features raft of exclusive standard bits

Published: August 25, 2016, 5:30 PM
Updated: November 21, 2021, 3:25 PM

Lotus Elise 250 Special Edition

To mark the 50th anniversary of its founding in the town of Hethel, Lotus Cars is creating a special edition of its Elise coupe — the Elise 250 Special Edition — and endowing it with the style and lightweight performance for which Lotus has become revered.

The special build is based on the Elise Cup 250 car launched earlier in 2016, but features a raft of exclusive standards, including carbon fibre front splitter, rear wing, hood and deck lid, and hand made leather seats. Only 50 will be produced.

“When we first introduced the Elise, it redefined how involving and exciting, yet civilised, a sports car could be,” explained Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus. “As the Elise was conceived, designed, engineered and is built at Hethel, we wanted a 50th tribute that’s even lighter than the fastest road-going Elise we’ve ever produced. The new Elise 250 Special Edition achieves that, so it’s supremely quick and agile, but it’s also wonderfully finished and stunning to look at.”

The hand built exterior will be available in four metallic colours (blue, red, yellow and white) and complemented by standard bright silver wheels (optionally black). A carbon fibre hardtop roof is also optional. The interior is also hand built, and available in blue or dark grey leather.

Power continues to be supplied by the 243-hp supercharged 1.8-litre dual overhead cam 4-cylinder, which propels the 900-kg (899 kg, actually, thanks to extensive use of aluminum and carbon fibre) 2-seat roadster to 100 km/h in about four seconds. The engine generates 184 lb-ft of torque, plateauing between 3,500 and 5,500 rpm and aids in 94-second lap times of the renowned Hethel test track (the best ever for a production Elise). A 6-speed manual and electronic rear differential are also standard.

The driver adjustable stability control (Sport and Race) provides different levels of throttle response, slip thresholds, and understeer recognition.

Other available options include audio system, air conditioning, cruise control, auxiliary driving lights, carpets or floor mats, and enhanced sound insulation.