Norfolk sports car firm's parent company reaches an out-of-court settlement with former chief executive
Steve Cropley Autocar
22 May 2014

Lotus’s parent company, DRB-HICOM, and the company's former boss, Dany Bahar, have agreed to drop their claims against one another — without disclosing any financial terms — one month before the actions were due to be heard by the High Court in London.

Malaysian-based DRB informed its home stock exchange of the deal last week.

Lotus’s parent firm dismissed Bahar soon after it acquired Proton, which owns Lotus, in 2012, and promptly announced an action against Bahar for what it viewed as his poor financial management of the sports car company.

Bahar made a £6.7m counter-claim for unfair dismissal. The new settlement is not expected to have any major impact on Lotus operations, according to DRB’s statement.

Bahar joined Lotus from Ferrari in 2009 and filled the company with high-priced engineers and designers. Within a year he announced a radical plan to launch five new models, revealing concepts of most of them at a celebrity-packed event held at the 2010 Paris motor show

The plan collapsed when DRB-HICOM acquired Proton in 2012, and announced that it would concentrate on only one of the planned models, the Esprit.

DRB has since announced that it will invest £100 million in Lotus. In the light of this it has secured another £10 million from the UK government’s Regional Growth Fund. 

The investment will be used to create new models, which DRB claims could generate up to 300 new jobs. Within the past month, former Peugeot-Citroën boss Jean-Mark Gales has joined Lotus as chief executive officer.

Get the latest car news, reviews and galleries from Autocar direct to your inbox every week. Enter your email address below:

Our Verdict

Lotus Evora S

The Lotus Evora S rides and handles in a way that puts nearly everything else in its shade. Shame the interior doesn't match the price tag

Join the debate

Comments
4

22 May 2014
If Dany Bahar had got his way I think Lotus would probably be on it's way to no longer existing.

TS7

22 May 2014
owenmahamilton wrote:

If Dany Bahar had got his way I think Lotus would probably be on it's way to no longer existing.

Lotus has forever been on its way to no longer existing!

22 May 2014
I agree, he wanted to turn Lotus into Ferrari, and he had little clue what to do, his ideas were reckless at best, bankruptcy at worse.

22 May 2014
One correction in the article is that Bahar didn't leave Ferrari for Lotus. Very little has been made of this but he was fired from Ferrari or as was explained to me, told it was time to go, directly from the top: Not Di Montezemolo but the Agnelli family!

Very little is known but Jean Todt was also involved as was Schumacher as well and it revolved around rights and payments made from the merchandising side of Ferrari's' business.

You may also want to look into the hiring and vetting process company that was paid by Lotus when it hired all of the high priced engineers and designers you mentioned.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Maserati Levante S GranSport
    First Drive
    20 October 2017
    Get ready to trade in your diesels: Maserati’s luxury SUV finally gets the engine it’s always needed
  • Jaguar XF Sportbrake TDV6
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The handsome Jaguar XF Sportbrake exhibits all the hallmarks that makes the saloon great, and with the silky smooth diesel V6 makes it a compelling choice
  • Volkswagen T-Roc TDI
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    Volkswagen's new compact crossover has the looks, the engineering and the build quality to be a resounding success, but not with this diesel engine
  • BMW M550i
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The all-paw M550i is a fast, effortless mile-muncher, but there's a reason why it won't be sold in the UK
  • Volvo V90
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The Volvo V90 is a big estate ploughing its own furrow. We’re about to see if it is refreshing or misguided