Lotus has a hit list of 150 items that it plans to improve on both the Elise and Evora.
The main work is centered on the Evora, designed to stimulate sluggish sales and bridge the styling gap between the current car and the new wave of Lotus models due to hit the market from 2013.
They range from gearchange quality to engine response to exhaust note, as well as ease of ingress and egress and improvements in quality. Ultimately, the company is aiming at Porsche quality standards, says boss Dany Bahar.
The Evora will also get a styling overhaul in time for a launch later this year as a 2012 model. Lotus’s ex-Ferrari design boss, Donato Coco believes the present Evora’s traditional Lotus mouth is “too weak” for a modern performance car. “Even many economy cars look more aggressive,” he says.
The new treatment has a long heritage, too, he says, appearing first on the Lotus 18 single-seater at the beginning of the 1960s.
Bahar also said he is positioning Lotus as what he calls a premium sports car maker rather than a luxury one like Ferrari.
And motorsport will be central to the brand’s appeal, he says, which is why the company is competing across so many categories.
For the road cars, Porsche's positioning and model range (minus SUVs) is the target, in pricing terms, models and quality, if not volume. That said, the mid-decade figure of 6-8000 could rise in the longer term.