Lotus 3-Eleven: Is it That Interesting or Is It Just Trying to Be?
Lotus 3-Eleven is finally here! The high performance sports car was unveiled at the 2015 Goodwood Festival of Speed and it expands the brand's lineup of expensive and high-end vehicles. Created with the well-known Lotus manner, the 3-Eleven has a lot to offer. But we all wonder if there are really some original features, or this is the same machine in different clothing. So, let's check out.
First of all, the Lotus 3-Eleven definitely tries to stay as dramatic as possible and as powerful as possible. The vehicle comes with restyled lightweight body and interesting design (especially the rear) and an overall power output, measured at 450 hp (330 kW). In fact, trying to be more flexible, the Lotus 3-Eleven will be offered in two variations: Road and Race. The difference is that, the Race model will come with more-aggressive appearance and some aerodynamic and drivetrain improvements.
Furthermore, the Race version of the Lotus 3-Eleven comes with weight of about 900 kg and offers some tweaked weight-power ratio, compared with the Road version. The Race guy goes from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 3.0 seconds and from that impressive start chases the top speed of 290 km/h (180 mph). But the Road brother isn't that slower, if we have to be honest. It offers almost the same acceleration, but the top speed is 280 km/h (174 mph). So, it is not that bad, if you chose the Road version.
Lotus 3-Eleven in depth
The 3-Eleven comes with a 3.5-liter V6 engine, that offers supercharger and a special cooler system. We mentioned, that it offers a total of 450 hp (330 kW), but we haven't told you anything else. Furthermore, the Lotus 3-Eleven offers 450Nm with maximum torque from 3500 to 6500 rpm. To control this power, Lotus engineers also fitted a close-ratio six-speed manual gearbox, that comes and with a Torsen-type limited slip differential.
Brakes and Tyres
The Lotus team this time relied on forged aluminum wheels and two types of tires: Michelin Pilot Super Sport or Michelin Cup 2. It depends which Lotus 3-Eleven you chose: the Race or the Road version.
Surely the engineering team tried to combine functionality and style. But I am not sure about the second. Even though the vehicle is beautiful, I still miss these small details and tweaks, that make you just want to hug the car. However, the Lotus 3-Eleven still has interesting features to offer. For example, the vehicle is now with 40% lighter than the GRP model.
In fact, the vehicle has its own confidence, but I still think, that the front is somehow unpolished. But this minor problem actually compensated by the interesting lines on the sides and the confident and massive manly-looking back. Just look at the elegant and smooth lines at the sides and how they contrast with the aggressive and somehow badass-looking rear.
Definitely the race character of the Lotus 3-Eleven dominates the interior. In fact, the domination is so serious, that the interior looks..boring. Yes, boring, despite the fact it is functional and driver-focused. But despite the not-that-interesting-looks, the Lotus 3-Eleven has still some goodies to show. For example, the TFT instrument cluster aeroscreen. There is also a special steering wheel and redesigned seats. Furthermore, the cabin offers data logger system, FIA approved race seat, fire extinguisher and battery kill switch.
Maybe one of the best news about the Lotus 3-Eleven is that, it will be hand-made. The Lotus Headqurters in Hethel will offer conditions to skilled craftsmen, so they can provide customers with only high quality materials and overall superior building quality.
As you can see, the Lotus 3-Eleven is still a wonderful vehicle, despite some minor problem and misunderstanding. I wonder, what do you think about it?