The folks over at Formula1 have an excellent interview with the Chief Technician of Team Lotus, Mike Gascoyne. Last season Team Lotus claimed the honors as the best of the new teams. This season – in their second year – they want much, much more. The extensive upgrade they brought to last weekend’s Spanish round certainly saw them take a step into the midfield on Saturday, and though they struggled somewhat in the Barcelona race, Gascoyne is certain, given time, they can fight with the likes of Force India and Williams more regularly. Speaking exclusively to Formula1, Gascoyne discusses the team’s driver line-up, the prospect of 1.6-litre engines, their Renault and Red Bull relationships and their ongoing quest for that elusive first point… read the full interview here.
It looks like a regular Opel (Saturn) Astra, but the car that’s pictured is completely different. This vehicle is Lotus Engineering’s first attempt at creating a hybrid vehicle, and represents the launch of a branch of the British firm dedicated to engineering and developing hybrid and electric vehicles. Underneath its hood, Lotus Engineering has fitted a small 1.5-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine featuring a turbocharger that’s mated to a mild hybrid drivetrain system. The 12 kW electric motor adds power, but not at the cost of fuel economy, and because it isn’t a full hybrid system that allows the car to run on pure electrical power, it poses a price advantage. Lotus has also taken a load off of the main engine by switching over the water pump and the fuel pump to items that are purely electrical, a change that […]
Lotus hadn’t planned on making many Elises. About 2,500 cars should do it, Lotus thought, taking the Elise from its 1996 launch to, maybe, the millennial cusp. After all, not many people would want a basic, pure, minimalist sports car costing a far from minimalist £19,000. Surely. Well, the Elise has just entered its third generation (from £27,450). About 35,000 have left Lotus’s Hethel factory to date. The idea has proved more widely seductive than the original creators dared to hope and, as I turn and go back up the twisting road by Goodwood racecourse to savour the bends yet again, I am once more completely under its spell. There is nothing quite like an Elise. Other cars have had the individual elements – light weight, simplicity, a mid-mounted engine, a British badge – but currently the Lotus is a […]
British sports-car outfit Caterham is launching both a new Seven race car with a forced-induction engine, and a one-make racing series in which the car can compete next year. The Caterham R600 racer offers 275 hp in the company’s familiar lightweight, stripped-out Seven chassis. The engine in question is a supercharged 2.0-liter Ford inline-four, rated for 275 hp and 200 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed sequential transmission sends power to the rear wheels by way of a limited-slip differential. The company claims the R600 will be much faster and “more aggressive” than existing Caterham models, but promises that “the linear power delivery of the supercharged engine makes it superbly drivable.” Make sure to check out the full story at Automobile Magazine. Staff