Lotus Cars: Engineered to Perfection in Philippines
Lotus Cars specializes in manufacturing of sports and racing car. This British manufacturer is known for its Elan, Europa, Esprit and Elise cars. It is presently headquartered in Hethel, Norfolk, England, and United Kingdom. Listed as Team Lotus, they have highly successful Formula One records.
Lotus Cars went bankrupt in 1996 and was acquired by Proton (A unit of DRB-HICOM). What makes Lotus different from its contemporaries in Philippines as well in global market is its legendary and innovative custom built engine. Lotus promises to provide unparalleled comfort and luxury. These cars they make are futuristic in looks and note-worthy in their performance.
A Brief History
Founded in 1952, initially it was known as Lotus Engineering Limited. Colin Dare and Colin Chapman, both graduates of University College of London are the founding members of this company. From 1958 to 1994 Lotus actively took part in Formula One racing. Then the company split into Lotus Cars Limited and Lotus Component Limited. The former dealt in basic cars for the public while they later dealt in sports and luxury cars.
They changed their name to Lotus Racing Limited for a short period of time in 1971 but changed it back again that same year. After that they have made great contributions to various luxury and sports section of the automobile industry.
In April 2015, this company produced its 4000th model. They have a small yet steady market in Philippines. Even though they are backed by Malaysian automobile giant Proton, their expansion is uncertain because its parent company seems disinterested in any further investments.
Company's global contributions in the last decade
- In 2006, it manufactured Chassis for the Volkswagen GX3, which was later released in Philippines.
- 2009 Kia Soul started using its tuned suspension for a better output performance.
- In 2010, this company joined Jaguar's Limo-Green project. It built a Range Extender engine for Jaguar's prototype XJ type hybrid car. This car manages 58 mpg from its range extender alone.
- Lotus also partnered with Jaguar for the year 2010 to develop a Chassis system and engine management for Jaguar CX-75. Its engine is powered supercharged 1.6 turbo petrol engine (500bhp). With 1 power output of 313bhp/liter compared to Bugatti Veyron of 125bhp/liter, it runs on a 75 bhp electric motor.
- In Hyundai Genesis, it has worked on new and better systems to improve handling and steering.
- Again in 2015 Spyker B6 Venator used a Lotus made engine that was made from a Toyota-source.
Company's Notable Models in Philippines
Some of the latest models available:
- Lotus Esprit
- Lotus Elite
- Lotus Evora
- Lotus Exige
Few Upcoming Models include:
- Two Eleven
Marketing Strategy in Philippines
Lotus has developed the successful Elise, Evora and Exige sports car series. It focuses on mainly achieving three things namely, "the ultimate lightness", "embodied sturdily", "a well-defined performance edge". Those prices of these cars are justified given that technology they use, which includes seven-speed twin clutch transmissions, continuously variable dampers, active aerodynamics, hybrid and range extender systems and heads up displays.
Last but not the least, there is an option of more alternatively-fuelled variants. They are also planning to launch improved variants. They are expecting to compete with leading manufacturers like Ferrari and boost their sales. Few new variants are the Esprit super-car, and the new Elise. The company sure knows how to use its resources.
Lotus has lower rate of sales compared to its competitors probably because it serves to a very specific group of buyers. Lotus has focused on making them better to drive. Like founder Colin Chapman said, "The best way to build a fast car is to add lightness". A minimal machine which prevents distractions for drivers and allows them to display their complete driving skills. Therefore Lotus is expected to make a comeback soon and also expand its sales in the Filipino Market.