The electric revolution is no longer limited to daily drivers and eco-commuters. Luxury brands such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes and Porsche have already begun augmenting their lineups with EV variants, while hypercar makers like Lamborghini and Ferrari expect their first electrics to arrive in the next few years. On Tuesday, British automaker Lotus announced that it too has an EV, the 600HP Eletre, with deliveries beginning next year in China, Europe and the UK.
Lotus’s First-ever Eletre ‘Hyper-SUV’
Developed under the codename Type 132, the Eletre Hyper-SUV “takes the heart and soul of the latest Lotus sports car – the Emira – and the revolutionary aero performance of the all-electric Evija hypercar, and reinterprets them as a Eletre Hyper-SUV according to the company’s press release. It also accomplishes a number of firsts, the release continued: “first five-door production car, the first model outside sports car segments, the first lifestyle EV, the most ‘connected’ Lotus ever.”
The Eletre was developed atop Lotus’ 800V Electric Premium Architecture (EPA) platform. That voltage puts it on par with the Audi e-Tron and Hyundai Ioniq 5, meaning that on a 350 kW DC fast charger, drivers will be able to add around 248 miles of range in a 20 minute charge, according to the company.
Lotus hasn’t specified how big the battery will be beyond that it “has a battery capacity that’s over 100 kWh” but the company is estimating a total range of 373 miles, equivalent to that of the Tesla Model X Long Range Plus. Its dual front and rear motors will reportedly output 600 horsepower producing a top speed of 161 MPH and a sub-3 second 0-60.
First-ever with deployable LIDAR
The Eletre is also the first vehicle on the market with a deployable LIDAR array. Used to supplement the driver assist system the unit pops up from the top of the windscreen, top of the rear glass and the front wheel arches — like the headlights from a 1990 MX-5 — when in use and then retracts when finished to maintain aerodynamics.
Manufacturing begins later this year at Lotus’ new production plant in Wuhan, China with deliveries beginning in 2023. The model will be available first in China, Europe and the UK. The company hasn’t disclosed pricing details yet.