The more interesting point here are the changes Lotus have made to the gearbox. These amount to increasing the stiffness of the linkage to make the shift more positive, while also reducing the inertia of the clutch by around 20 per cent to improve the shift speed at higher revs. The result, I’m sad to report, is a bit of a mixed bag.
While the gearchange is less woolly, especially fore and aft, we are not talking about a huge step forward. Overall it is still a long way from being the rifle-bolt snick-snack gearchange the Evora deserves.
However, the changes to the clutch are more successful, making the change less stubborn, particularly from first to second gear.
There is however, a flip side to the improvements: the increased stiffness of the components means more noise and vibration is transmitted through the mechanism to the cabin.
The clutch changes also mean that it also fractionally harder to balance the engine revs at the clutch biting point, leading to the occasional kangaroo start. With time I’m sure you’d learn to live with this, but I’m not so sure about the increased gearbox noise.
As is often the case in engineering, you don’t get something for nothing, and the improvements in precision and control have to be traded against less isolation, but in this case I don’t feel the improvements go far enough. And the trade-off is too great.
Don’t get me wrong, the Evora it is still a cracking car to drive, and is still much quieter and more comfortable than any other Lotus, but when the boys from Hethel said they’d improved the gearchange I was hoping for more.
The news from the cabin is more uniformly positive. Resisting the temptation of the Premium pack does mean there is no choice of colour for the leather – it is black only – and you are denied the opportunity of the two-tone interior, but there is still plenty of leather. And those areas not covered in cow (mostly low down in the cabin) are finished in a not-unattractive fabric instead.
Should I buy one?
Our biggest gripe with the Evora has always been its price, so any method to keep this to a minimum is going to get our vote.
If it’s the Evora’s driving experience you are most interested in, then ditching the rear seats and sticking to the basic interior will do nothing to dilute the entertainment. And it's a sensible way to keep the cost below £50,000.