An electric successor to the Lotus Elise is coming in 2026
And it's rumoured to produce twice the power of the outgoing car
It's going pop and bang at Lotus these days, with the historic brand now fully beginning to embrace the electric era. It all started in June of 2019, when Lotus unveiled the world to the Evija: a 2,000bhp EV that looked and went like the clappers. Then, a few months back, Lotus announced the Emira - the car that would allow Lotus to begin reinventing themselves as they head into what is, without a doubt, the most important few years for them since the passing of the great Colin Chapman.
Last month, Lotus released the initial details about their new all-electric sports platform that will form the basis of almost all of their future zero-emissions performance cars, and the first blueprint they'll be putting in will be that of the heir to the Elise. It's said to debut in 2026, and act as Lotus' entry-level sports car of the voltaic era.
In a new report published by Autocar, they outlined the primary foundations of the Elise successor thanks to information from Lotus themselves. It's known as the Type 135, and it will tick all the boxes that will qualify it to be a car that Mr Chapman himself would be proud of. That means the simple as you like engineering, with minimal weight, and a supreme bias towards handling and agility. Its propulsion will, of course, be fully electric.
“It’s our DNA: dynamics, aerodynamics, light weighting – that’s what we do on all our products,” said Matt Windle, managing director at Lotus. “We still want these to be Lotus products. They are going to have a different propulsion system but that system comes with benefits as well: instant torque, easier cooling, and better packaging, so the first sports car will have a lot of storage and packaging benefits as well.”
It's being called the E-Sports architecture, and will be offered in either a single or dual-motor layout. The part which will really get the blood flowing, however, is the fact that even the most basic models that are built upon the E-Sports architecture will have around 470bhp - that translates to roughly twice the amount of the outgoing Elise Sport 240 Final Edition.
The team working behind the project will also try to maximise the highly effective aerodynamics that will be a beneficiary of the compact dimensions of the electric powertrain. A vehicle that produces that much power, and will no doubt take the whole ''EV's are heavy'' thing to lower depths than previously seen, means this could turn out to be a riot.
I'm eagerly awaiting this one, are you?
A potential render for the 2026 Elise. Image credit: Motor1