After 75 years of doing the same thing — manufacturing super-lightweight, low-production, hand-built sports cars in the U.K. — Lotus is now beginning the difficult business of reinventing itself.
The Eletre SUV — the brand's first — arrives in about a year, while the Emeya five-door sedan comes in the first quarter of 2025.
Both will be made in China. They are part of Lotus' goal to wean itself off internal combustion engines by 2030 and morph into a mainstream premium performance-luxury brand competing against Porsche, Audi, Lucid and others.
The current Emira sports car — powered by a souped-up Toyota V-6 — is not only the last internal combustion-powered Lotus, but also the last British-made Lotus. The Emira goes out of production in 2030 and no plans for output at Lotus' Hethel, England, plant have been announced.
You may recall that China's Zhejiang Geely Holding — Geely — bought a controlling interest in Lotus in 2017. The company, which also owns Volvo, has done a masterful job investing in the right products for Volvo and allowing the Swedish brand to remain so and grow — even though some Volvos are made in China.