The team also focused on Le Mans race cars to improve vehicle design for airflow. They dropped conventional wing mirrors to reduce air resistance and swapped them for cameras built into the front fenders while developing the car to optimize downforce. Russell Carr, design director, said the Evija is "a timeless design with exceptional downforce."
And that's something it takes to stay on the road. Lotus says it can go from 0-62MPH in less than three seconds and hit speeds in excess of 200MPH. Tesla says his new Roadster, in comparison, will make zero to 60 seconds in 1.9 seconds and reach its top speed of 250 MPH in less than nine seconds. The Evija of Lotus will take nine seconds to reach about 187 MPH.
The inspiration comes from racing cars from the 1950s with a floating-wing dashboard that you can see from outside the car. According to design director Russell Carr, it "represents a typical Lotus approach because it performs multiple functions." It not only houses the instrument panel and air ducts, but is also the core of the car's supporting structure. In person it is shiny, beautiful and looks expensive. The contours of the sides mean that there are literally holes that pierce the car's profile to improve the airflow and presumably the style.
Other center console controls have touch-sensitive haptic feedback buttons, with the light tracing the keys as your fingers slide over them. Lotus does not want you to forget that this, sir or madam, is a luxury car.
Perhaps the most impressive specification on the Evija paper is related to a different kind of speed – how fast charging takes. The car can fully charge in nine minutes with an 800 kW charger.
That's amazing, except that such chargers are nowhere commercially available.
Back in the real world with the help of charging technology that actually exists (a 350kW charger is currently the most powerful), the charging time of the Evija will only be 18 minutes to get to 100 percent. In terms of range, the car can travel up to 270 miles based on the new European Combined Cycle.
Back to the electric powertrain, which was developed by Williams Advanced Engineering and is not only suitable for F1 cars but also for Formula E drivers as well. According to Lotus, the mid-mounted battery is the lightest, most energy-dense electric power package ever built into a street car – and the Evija shoots to a target weight of 1680 kg as a sign. When it arrives, Lotus will be the lightest "all-electric" hyper-car in production.
Given the price, the Evija is a non-shocking limited edition: Only 130 of them will haunt the streets for old money-millionaires and the other one-percent. This will be the first Lotus car to come from its new owner, Geely, who owns Volvo. If the car is a hit, this could mean that less expensive cars for mere mortals like us will get the drip-down effect of this carbon-fiber-wrapped halo with at least some specifications and features.
The Evija launches in 2020.