Lotus is supercharging its roadster to create the fastest-ever Elise
24 October 2007

Lotus is bolting a supercharger to its roadster, creating the most powerful production Elise ever.

Called the Elise SC, it is not simply an Elise with the engine from the Exige S, not least because that car’s intercooler sits atop the engine, and there’s no room for it in the Elise.

Instead, the SC uses a new, smaller Eaton M45 supercharger with no intercooler. The SC produces 217bhp, enough to push the 903kg Elise to 60mph in 4.4sec, to 100mph in 10.7sec and on to 150mph.

You’ll be able to spot the new Elise SC by its small rear spoiler and new alloys, which are half an inch wider at the back than on the standard car.

All Elises, meanwhile, now get upgraded equipment for 2008. Airbags become standard across the range, which means a new soft-touch dashboard for all cars. This includes new instruments. There’s also a new alarm/immobiliser system, with a bespoke key for the first time.

Option packs across the Elise range are also now simplified: you can either have a Touring Pack or a Sport Pack.

The Touring Pack brings leather trim, carpets and sound insulation, while the Sport Pack gets you Bilstein sports dampers, traction control, twin oil coolers, sports seats and sports wheels and tyres.

As before, air-con, traction control and a limited-slip diff are options on all cars.

Finally, as it has given the Elise a bit more poke, Lotus has done the same for the supercharged Exige S. This now has the option of a Performance Pack, which ups power from 217 to 237bhp, the same as for the limited-edition 240R. You also get upgraded brakes and clutch.

The Elise SC costs £32,550 – £4000 more than the Elise R. The Exige S costs £34,550, and the Performance Pack another £3000.

 

Our Verdict

Lotus Elise

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

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