Chinese company is aiming to achieve Porsche-like status for Lotus with huge investment; it bought the British sports car maker in 2017

New Lotus owner Geely is planning a £1.5 billion-plus investment in the brand, in its attempt to push the small British manufacturer into the big leagues of sports car production. 

Geely’s plan includes increasing its 51% stake in Lotus, which would mean buying more from Malaysian co-owner Etika Automotive. 

A new design centre in Coventry is planned for Lotus, as is growth of the brand’s Hethel headquarters, with 200 new engineers due to be hired. After this, another Midlands-based plant will handle the expanded production as the brand grows. 

This is in addition to a new factory in China that the brand would use to cater for demand in the Far East. Geely boss Li Shufu reiterated the brand’s commitment to the UK, though, saying: "This is just like what we have done with the London Taxi Company: engineer in Britain, design in Britain and built in Britain. We see no reason to move fifty years of combined experience to China; let them do what they do best, in Britain.”

Geely stated in an email to Bloomberg that it is “fully committed to restoring Lotus into being a leading global luxury brand". It’s thought that the firm has the likes of Porsche in its sights for Lotus’s new market position. The brand's first move into Porsche-like territory will be an SUV, due in 2020.

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Li's plan to turn his company into a major global player is one of the industry’s most aggressive; shortly after acquiring Lotus and a 49.9% stake in parent company Proton, Geely spent £6.4 billion acquiring almost 10% of Mercedes-Benz's parent company, Daimler, becoming its largest single shareholder. 

Read more:

Lotus owner Geely plans SUV and cars to rival Ferrari

Geely buys Lotus, stake in Proton

Geely rules out buying more Daimler shares 'for the time being'

Lotus production to continue in Norfolk, could also begin in China, says Geely owner

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Comments
23

9 August 2018
Good luck.

9 August 2018

Geely's backing appears to have been very positive for both Volvo and LTI.  It will be great to see just what Lotus can achieve finally with decent financial resources available to fund development.  A Lotus SUV (Yikes!) will be small price to pay if the company can produce a true Boxster/Cayman rival.

From a Norfolk perspective, it's slightly disappointing that design and additional production facilities will be located in Coventry, rather than Hethel.  Perhaps there's a larger pool of motor industry trained designers and engineers in the West Midlands?

9 August 2018

Sounds really promising but Lotus has had more false dawns than just about any company I can think of. Let's hope that this time they are allowed to deliver on the incredible talent they have.

9 August 2018

1.5b? So, once again, Bahar was insane right? If Geely had owned Lotus back then he’d probably still be here.

9 August 2018
manicm wrote:

1.5b? So, once again, Bahar was insane right? If Geely had owned Lotus back then he’d probably still be here.

Yeah, dunno what theyre thinkning of, buying a company and then making a big investment in it, madness, much better to buy it, starve it of cash and let it rot init.

XXXX just went POP.

9 August 2018
manicm wrote:

1.5b? So, once again, Bahar was insane right? If Geely had owned Lotus back then he’d probably still be here.

Totally. Bahar was right on with his plans and approach. It only fell apart after DHB Hicom aquired Proton. Dany knew what he was doing, despite the lack of business accumen from journalists - yes I include you Autocar - who even today shoot him down.   Disregard all the profit rubbish you heard from the most recent guy, he had no clue other than how to be an accountant. Tesla lost $770m last quarter alone, by building a company and outselling BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined in the mid-size exec market.  Profit is not the primary goal during the period when you are trying to build a company for growth and scale.

Indeed, Dany seems to be doing rather well having set up Ares. Hopefully our British motoring journalists are all eating a rather large slice of humble pie.

Had Dany been given the opportunity; we'd have a fine range of Lotus cars, that combined with Mclaren's and Aston Martin's would make Britain the supercar nation to lead the world.

 

Lotus Evora 400

9 August 2018
wheelman wrote:

Tesla lost $770m last quarter alone, by building a company and outselling BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined in the mid-size exec market.  

Where exactly did Tesla outsell BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined, Globally or in just 1 market? 

 

9 August 2018
Citytiger wrote:

wheelman wrote:

Tesla lost $770m last quarter alone, by building a company and outselling BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined in the mid-size exec market.  

Where exactly did Tesla outsell BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined, Globally or in just 1 market? 

 

it wasn’t combined and it was only in America mid exec market - ONLY.

9 August 2018

In the most important region in the world when it comes to those cars.

The USA

10 August 2018
wheelman wrote:

manicm wrote:

1.5b? So, once again, Bahar was insane right? If Geely had owned Lotus back then he’d probably still be here.

Totally. Bahar was right on with his plans and approach. It only fell apart after DHB Hicom aquired Proton. Dany knew what he was doing, despite the lack of business accumen from journalists - yes I include you Autocar - who even today shoot him down.   Disregard all the profit rubbish you heard from the most recent guy, he had no clue other than how to be an accountant. Tesla lost $770m last quarter alone, by building a company and outselling BMW, Audi, Mercedes and Jaguar combined in the mid-size exec market.  Profit is not the primary goal during the period when you are trying to build a company for growth and scale.

Indeed, Dany seems to be doing rather well having set up Ares. Hopefully our British motoring journalists are all eating a rather large slice of humble pie.

Had Dany been given the opportunity; we'd have a fine range of Lotus cars, that combined with Mclaren's and Aston Martin's would make Britain the supercar nation to lead the world.

 

To be fair, Bahar's plan was to build about five new models.  Concurrently.  Without any money.  He was completely deluded and detached from reality, or an idiot, or both.  The world was right to ridicule him. 

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Is the Lotus Elise still the last word in open-top British sports car fun?

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