Lotus boss says selling the firm is a likely option for owner - once its launched several new cars

Group Lotus’s Malaysian owner, Proton, might consider selling the Hethel-based sports car maker to a major international car group that could provide the long-term backing it needs, according to Lotus CEO Dany Bahar.

The sale of the company would be an obvious option, says Bahar, once Lotus has launched several of the five proposed performance models it has planned, starting with the new Esprit V8 supercar in 2013.

“There are three clear options,” he said. “Proton could keep Lotus, float it off or sell it outright. It would be quite understandable if an owner that has invested so much wanted to see a return on its investment, especially if the buyer were a major car maker that could back Lotus for the long term.”

Bahar said Lotus is continuing to sell around 2700 cars a year and has met every one of its timetable and turnover targets. As a result, a recent visit to Lotus by Proton’s top management was “routine, with no surprises”.

Bahar made his comments ahead of Asian investment firms reporting that Proton should sell Lotus over the Christmas period.

As a vote of confidence, Proton bosses have extended Bahar’s own contract until at least 2015.

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28

6 January 2012

The question is which "major international car group"?

I have no idea...Ford??

6 January 2012

Yes and its Ceo could also keep from gobshiting for more than 5 minutes at a time . I'll let you decide which is the more likely scenario .

Im convinced it will end in tears .

Theres nowt like uncertainity to undermine future sales of your product is there .

6 January 2012

The only major automotive group without a sporting or premium brand of their own that I can think of is Hyundai / Kia. However I can't see them going down the route of purchasing Lotus.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

6 January 2012

For SAAB stories in Autocar, are we now to be treated to endless LOTUS might be sold by Proton stories?

This is the 2nd one since Christmas.

6 January 2012

Who might be a potential buyer of Lotus?

Well the Chinese seem to have a bottomless pit of money these days and they are unwaveringly committed to getting their hands on as much Western technology & engineering knowhow/expertise/intellectual property as they can get, legally or otherwise, so...

6 January 2012

[quote TegTypeR]The only major automotive group without a sporting or premium brand of their own that I can think of is Hyundai / Kia. However I can't see them going down the route of purchasing Lotus.[/quote] Well, Kia did buy the license for the S2 Elan from Lotus back in '96, don't forget, and sold it as the Kia Elan for a few years. So stranger things have happened...


6 January 2012

It would be good to see Hyundai/Kia take it over, learn how to do ride and handling. They are on top of their game in most other areas, and will make their cars appeal to the heart as well as the head.

But I dont see it happening. I like Lotus, but tbh but I feel this could go the way of SAAB if Lotus is put up for sale. Would be a shame as they made some great cars and have a lot of engineering know how.

6 January 2012

[quote Nick Rutter]

[quote TegTypeR]The only major automotive group without a sporting or premium brand of their own that I can think of is Hyundai / Kia. However I can't see them going down the route of purchasing Lotus.[/quote] Well, Kia did buy the license for the S2 Elan from Lotus back in '96, don't forget, and sold it as the Kia Elan for a few years. So stranger things have happened...

[/quote]

You are of course right, I had forgotten about that.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

6 January 2012

The problem with the Lotus plan is the huge amounts of money required to produce the new product line. Then you might still only have a "Lotus" at the end of it. That is, it will only sell in certain quantities regardless of where it's marketed. Porsche and put a badge on anything and it sells, but Lotus?

For Proton the best option really is to sell it off quickly and let someone else put the money in.

However, we also forget that Lotus isn't just about the cars, there's the engineering development part too. I believe they work for a variety of different manufacturers and that could be the golden egg, and the only reason why Proton has kept Lotus.

(Although if anybody can clarify the Lotus Cars / Lotus Engineering link I'd appreciate that, thanks.)

6 January 2012

maybe mr fernandes could put a cheeky bid in

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