Paris Motor Show 2010 – Lotus Elite Concept

Lotus stun the world with ambitious model launch program: Lotus Elite Concept If the Paris Motor Show threw up a couple of headline grabbing supercars you’d be happy, curious and envious. Jaguar delivered with their amazing C-X75 electric/turbine hybrid and Lamborghini with their carbon-with-everything Sesto Elemento concept. You’d be stunned if any manufacturer launched two […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Lotus Elite Concept

Lotus stun the world with ambitious model launch program: Lotus Elite Concept

If the Paris Motor Show threw up a couple of headline grabbing supercars you’d be happy, curious and envious. Jaguar delivered with their amazing C-X75 electric/turbine hybrid and Lamborghini with their carbon-with-everything Sesto Elemento concept. You’d be stunned if any manufacturer launched two concepts. But five? That’s what Lotus did and blew the press’s mind in the process. Much has been written about the feasibility of this production plan and we don’t have a view other than it seems over-ambitious. The bucket principle says that if you work in a company and ask for ten buckets of whatever to match your needs you’ll get five delivered. Is this the case with Lotus? If we get to see even three of these in the real world within the proposed time schedule we’ll be amazed and happy. All five and we’ll be stunned and elated!

Paris Motor Show 2010 Lotus future model lineup


Don’t forget though, that the first model to go on sale is the Elan a whole 3 years away, so there is plenty of time for the designs to evolve or change substantially. Also the show cars may have been part of a giant focus group rather than a fixed agenda.

Schedule:
Elan 4.0 litre V6 – summer 2013
Elite 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2014
Elise 2.0 litre straight 4 – spring 2014
Esprit 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2015
Eterne 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2015


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Lotus Eterne Concept

Lotus stun the world with ambitious model launch program: Lotus Eterne Concept If the Paris Motor Show threw up a couple of headline grabbing supercars you’d be happy, curious and envious. Jaguar delivered with their amazing C-X75 electric/turbine hybrid and Lamborghini with their carbon-with-everything Sesto Elemento concept. You’d be stunned if any manufacturer launched two […]

2010 Paris Motor Show - Lotus Eterne Concept

Lotus stun the world with ambitious model launch program: Lotus Eterne Concept

If the Paris Motor Show threw up a couple of headline grabbing supercars you’d be happy, curious and envious. Jaguar delivered with their amazing C-X75 electric/turbine hybrid and Lamborghini with their carbon-with-everything Sesto Elemento concept. You’d be stunned if any manufacturer launched two concepts. But five? That’s what Lotus did and blew the press’s mind in the process. Much has been written about the feasibility of this production plan and we don’t have a view other than it seems over-ambitious. The bucket principle says that if you work in a company and ask for ten buckets of whatever to match your needs you’ll get five delivered. Is this the case with Lotus? If we get to see even three of these in the real world within the proposed time schedule we’ll be amazed and happy. All five and we’ll be stunned and elated!

Paris Motor Show 2010 Lotus future model lineup


Don’t forget though, that the first model to go on sale is the Elan a whole 3 years away, so there is plenty of time for the designs to evolve or change substantially. Also the show cars may have been part of a giant focus group rather than a fixed agenda.

Schedule:
Elan 4.0 litre V6 – summer 2013
Elite 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2014
Elise 2.0 litre straight 4 – spring 2014
Esprit 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2015
Eterne 5.0 litre V8 – spring 2015


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Porsche 911 Carrera GTS

Porsche’s 911 Carrera S gains girth and grunt and a couple of extra letters: GT Star attraction on Porsche’s stand in Paris was the blue Speedster, but it was flanked by a brace of new Carrera GTS models in white. Roadster and coupé share the Carrera 4’s extra rear width without the 4-wheel drive but […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Porsche 911 Carrera GTS

Porsche’s 911 Carrera S gains girth and grunt and a couple of extra letters: GT

Star attraction on Porsche’s stand in Paris was the blue Speedster, but it was flanked by a brace of new Carrera GTS models in white. Roadster and coupé share the Carrera 4’s extra rear width without the 4-wheel drive but gain a few more horses in the tail; 23 to be precise, taking power up to 408 bhp. Sounds like every permutation of Porsche build spec was thrown up in the air and what landed fettled into a new model. We bet it’s brilliant though, as all 911’s are.


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Audi e-tron Spyder Concept

This is not a just convertible e-tron, but a whole reconfiguration into a plug-in hybrid Look over to the left of the Audi Quattro Concept on the Audi stand and you’ll notice, what at first glance looks like the convertible version. A natural assumption when you see the similar nose, waistline and short overhangs of […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Audi e-tron Spyder Concept

This is not a just convertible e-tron, but a whole reconfiguration into a plug-in hybrid

Look over to the left of the Audi Quattro Concept on the Audi stand and you’ll notice, what at first glance looks like the convertible version. A natural assumption when you see the similar nose, waistline and short overhangs of this silver spider. Audi are demonstrating and evolving their new design language, which started with the A5 coupe and it’s concept predecessor the Nuvolari quattro. Look under the striking silver skin and that’s where the similarities end. This Audi e-tron also looks just like an open air follow up to the e-tron supercar shown at the Geneva Show in March. The pivotal word in Audi’s description though is “hybrid”. Whereas the original e-tron was a pure electric car, this iteration is powered by Audi’s highly efficient new 3.0 TDi engine. Audi’s Le Mans success and everyone’s experience of driving many highly desirable cars powered by diesel makes this not such an unlikely powertrain. Here we are looking at the immediate future of sportscars; able to deliver shattering performance and still return favourable fuel consumption and emissions. Porsche got there first with the 918 Spyder concept and the rest of the world will be following along shortly. Sporting 600 miles+ range, 128 mpg and 59 g/km, Audi’s e-tron Spyder is not to be sniffed at! Combining the torque from TDi and front drive electric motors gives the concept massive torque, controllable in Quattro fashion. 1,002 Nm of torque should do rather nicely thank you.


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Audi Quattro Concept

Audi’s Quattro Concept points to future while harking back to the 80’s Take an RS5, chop 150mm off the wheelbase, lop off surplus overhangs, chuck out the back seats, and send the whole shebang on a high carbon diet and what do you get? Strangely Audi would have you believe a modern iteration of the […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Audi Quattro Concept

Audi’s Quattro Concept points to future while harking back to the 80’s

Take an RS5, chop 150mm off the wheelbase, lop off surplus overhangs, chuck out the back seats, and send the whole shebang on a high carbon diet and what do you get? Strangely Audi would have you believe a modern iteration of the short wheel base Quattro. Well, a concept anyway. True it sports a 5 cylinder turbo, 4-wheel drive and some styling cues from the boxy 1984 rally homologation special. In truth it’s more of a technical exercise, an engineers’ crash course in losing weight in all areas and pointer to the immediate future. And yet when all the kilos have been shaved from body, chassis, engine and drivetrain this concept weighs the same as the original at 1300 kgs. Luckily it’ all wrapped up in a beautiful body, much prettier than the cut-and-shunt brute of the original and poised as a combustion engine antidote to the electric E-Tron with which it shares the stand.


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Fisker Karma ES

Fisker Karma ES show their production version It’s been sometime coming, but Fisker finally showed a production version of their Karma ES. This plug-in hybrid is a full size 4 door saloon car with luxurious and sporty aspirations. That a new startup company should aim to be the first manufacturer to fill this sector of […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Fisker Karma ES, production version

Fisker Karma ES show their production version

It’s been sometime coming, but Fisker finally showed a production version of their Karma ES. This plug-in hybrid is a full size 4 door saloon car with luxurious and sporty aspirations. That a new startup company should aim to be the first manufacturer to fill this sector of the market is staggering, when you see how many hurdles there are to pass. Just building a new factory for a conventional combustion engine car is a major undertaking. Even mighty Toyota are only just sorting out a plug-in hybrid version of their Prius, and the newly launched Lexus CT200h is a conventional hybrid. GM meanwhile are rushing to the market with their Chevy Volt and Opel Ampera plug-in hybrid, but in the economy/mid size market. Certainly no-one offers a fully integrated solar panel roof and luxury interior. We wish them luck, but wonder how they’ll reach their projected 100,000 car per year target…


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Porsche 911 Speedster

Porsche shave a couple of inches off a windscreen and make the roof manual – Hey presto, you have a Speedster Another year, another pointless Porsche. Faced with a Paris showstand potentially devoid of new models, the 911 Speedster was conjured up by Porsche’s “Exclusive” department to lend a hand to the mildly modified 911 […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Porsche 911 Speedster

Porsche shave a couple of inches off a windscreen and make the roof manual – Hey presto, you have a Speedster

Another year, another pointless Porsche. Faced with a Paris showstand potentially devoid of new models, the 911 Speedster was conjured up by Porsche’s “Exclusive” department to lend a hand to the mildly modified 911 lineup. 356 of these marketing specials will be made to satisfy the collectors appetite. Naturally specs have been bumped up marginally, and a few exclusive bodystyling and interior mods incorporated to justify the 144,100 UKPounds ticket price. You have to wonder though why you’d want one of these specials over the standard convertible. I mean, manual roof, inferior air management when roof down…And a lesson from history for the aficionados: The 1989 911 Speedster had a limited run of 171 cars, but was then superseded by a wide-bodied turbolook version of which 2,103 were made, making a mockery of the exclusivity of the Speedster.

Having said all that, we admit that it drew our attention, as intended, and we know in our hearts, that once at the wheel of a Speedster all these criticisms would evaporate – blown into the weeds by the sheer thrill of driving any 911!


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Paris Motor Show – Audi R8GT

Audi turn up the wick with a pseudo race version of their R8, the GT Audi R8 goes on a diet: loses 100 kgs, gains tons of carbon fibre reinforced plastic. Yet another supercar gets the liposuction treatment. Don’t get us wrong; it’s a great idea, just not very original. Nor should that detract from […]

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Audi R8GT

Audi turn up the wick with a pseudo race version of their R8, the GT

Audi R8 goes on a diet: loses 100 kgs, gains tons of carbon fibre reinforced plastic. Yet another supercar gets the liposuction treatment. Don’t get us wrong; it’s a great idea, just not very original. Nor should that detract from the fact that lighter cars automatically equal faster cars for the same energy input. Resigned, yet content to live in the shadow of it’s cousin the Lamborghini Gallardo, the R8’s diet took it down to 1525 kgs, whereas the Superleggera’s kerb weight went down to 1340 kgs. Add to that the R8 GT’s 10 BHP deficiency and you can do the sums…But the Audi has it’s own character and market so won’t be worried by the comparison. What was a slick, neat supercar just grew wings and fins and no doubt breathes fire. Oh, and you can specify a roll cage too ;-)


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Paris Motor Show 2010 – Porsche GT2RS photos

Porsche GT2 RS photo gallery We covered Porsche’s GT2 RS back in May when announced, but first saw it in the flesh at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, and couldn’t resist posting some photos. See how many carbon fibre additions you can count…

Paris Motor Show 2010 - Porsche GT2 RS


Porsche GT2 RS photo gallery

We covered Porsche’s GT2 RS back in May when announced, but first saw it in the flesh at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, and couldn’t resist posting some photos. See how many carbon fibre additions you can count…


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Paris Motor Show – Lamborghini Sesto Elemento

Lamborghini spearhead weight reduction program with carbon fibre show car Compare the specs of Lamborghini’s Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera, launched at the Geneva Show last March, and the new Sesto Elemento and you’d be forgiven for thinking this is just a rebodied Gallardo show car. 570 bhp in a 4-wheel drive chassis sounds identical. Look […]

Paris Motor Show - Lamborghini Sesto Elemento

Lamborghini spearhead weight reduction program with carbon fibre show car

Compare the specs of Lamborghini’s Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera, launched at the Geneva Show last March, and the new Sesto Elemento and you’d be forgiven for thinking this is just a rebodied Gallardo show car. 570 bhp in a 4-wheel drive chassis sounds identical. Look at the weight difference though and you’ll realise why Lambo are proudly presenting this show car as a ground-breaking prototype. The Superleggera was already the lightest car in the range at 1340 kgs (dry weight), but this Sesto Elemento comes in under the 1000 kegs mark. They had to chuck out all sorts of cabin trim and superfluous gizmos and build it almost entirely in carbon fibre to reach 999 kgs. The result is that Lambo claim a 0 to 100 km/h (0-62mph) time of only 2.5 secs compared to the Superleggera’s 3.4 seconds – What a difference weight, or lack of it makes. It’s curious, and very welcome, to see the manufacturers vying to produce lighter cars at last, when until recently, all cars seemed to get heavier as the model cycles progressed. It goes without saying that power to weight ratio increases substantially and performance per unit of energy consumed is on the up.

The Sesto Elemento (Sixth Element) is really a technology demonstrator though, championing Lambo’s advance in carbon fibre moulding and their ability to blend it with plastics to give both rigidity and quality finish at low weight. It points to the future and also hints at the Murcielago replacement that must surely be waiting around the next bend. Let Lamborghini talk you through the finer points of the technology by reading on…


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