Elise, Exige and Evora production has ended

(Hethel, UK – 22 December 2021) Today, Lotus commemorates the last of the Elise, Exige and Evora sports cars.

The trio were photographed on site with many of the Lotus team who contributed to the design, engineering, assembly and sales of the cars.

Between these three model lines and over the course of 26 years, a total of 51,738 cars will have come off the production line. Combined, they represent almost half of the total production of Lotus in its 73-year history. In addition, 9,715 sports cars were built for Lotus’ third-party clients, including GM and Tesla.

From 1996 to 2000, the first-generation Elise and Exige sports cars were built in a small assembly hall at Hethel alongside the Lotus Esprit. The current assembly lines, which were installed in 2000, will be dismantled and replaced with all-new state-of-the-art facilities in support of the all-new Emira factory. Full Emira production begins in the spring, after the prototype and test phases currently underway are completed, taking Lotus sports car production into an exciting, high-tech and semi-automated era, and increasing capacity up to 5,000 units per year on a single shift pattern.

The last examples of the Elise, Exige and Evora models are reserved for Lotus’ growing heritage collection.

Joining the collection will be the last Elise, a Sport 240 Final Edition finished in Yellow and the last of 35,124 cars; the last Exige, a Cup 430 Final Edition in Heritage Racing Green – number 10,497; and the last Evora – a GT430 Sport finished in Dark Metallic Grey – the last of a production run of 6,117.

The Elise and Exige sports cars are built around the Lotus ‘small car platform’. On the same platform, and also manufactured by Lotus at Hethel were the Opel Speedster / Vauxhall VX220 (7,200 cars built between 2000 and 2005) and the Tesla Roadster (2,515 cars built between 2007 and 2012). Therefore, including the Lotus 340R, Europa, 2-Eleven and 3-Eleven cars, this brings the total Lotus small car platform production volumes to 56,618 cars.

Matt Windle, Managing Director, Lotus Cars, said: “First of all, I would like to thank the Lotus team who have worked on the Elise, Exige and Evora over the years and who are now transferring to Emira and Evija manufacturing. I would also like to convey enormous gratitude to all the customers of the Elise, Exige and Evora over the last 26 years for their passion, enthusiasm and support. These customers have given our ‘three Es’ true cult status – usually reserved for long-out-of-production classics. As we say farewell to the last few cars, we look forward to the Emira and Evija in the all-new factories at Hethel and sub-assembly facilities in Norwich, which introduce greater efficiencies and automation, higher quality and flexibility and the hugely exciting next chapter in our Vision80 strategy.”

Russell Carr, Design Director, Lotus Cars, added: “These iconic cars have not only played a huge role in Lotus’ 73-year history but have also been ever-present in my daily life. Together with the Lotus design team, I have lived and breathed these cars for over 26 years. We will miss them, but a bit like Christmas, once it’s over, the excitement for the next one starts to build – and that’s what’s happening now at Lotus with the Evija, Emira and forthcoming Type 132. 2022 is going to be a great year as a new Lotus generation swings into action.”

Gavan Kershaw, Director of Vehicle Attributes, said: “The Elise, particularly, has been a huge part of my life. It was conceived when I had just finished my apprenticeship and I was working  in the vehicle workshops helping to build early prototypes. The Exige will always remain close to me, as the development programme was the first that I worked on as an engineer and I also won the British GT3 championship in a race version. The Evora is also hugely important as it showed that you can have high performance and award-winning handling without sacrificing the longer-journey GT ability. I have first-hand experience of this as I won the British GT4 championships in one and I will never forget leading the technical programme for our Evora Le Mans campaign where we achieved a podium.”

Richard Rackham, Head of Vehicle Concepts, who was vehicle architect on the Lotus Elise and part of the team that pioneered extruded and bonded aluminium technology in the automotive industry, said: “The impact of these three cars has been spectacular over the years, technically, structurally and dynamically. But all technologies and innovations move on and, if you had asked me of my proudest moment four years ago, I would have, without hesitation, said the Elise chassis. However, this has been usurped by our new Project LEVA architecture for our new range of electric sports cars, starting with the Type 135 in a few years’ time. This is now the zenith of Lotus architectures as it has moved the technology game so much further. There is a lot to look forward to.”

Next out of the Lotus stable is the Emira, the critically acclaimed new mid-engineered sports car from Lotus. Launched last July at Hethel and on a world tour ever since, it’s the last petrol-powered car from Lotus. Joining the first electric Lotus – the Evija hypercar and the most powerful production car in the world – will be the all-electric Type 132, Lotus’ first SUV, which will be revealed to the world in the spring.

Registration Open for Lotus Club Laguna Seca Track Day, March 29, 2021

Crossing the Finish

Come join the Golden Gate Lotus Club for an open track event at Laguna Seca Raceway on Monday, March 29, 2021.  This will be a 90dB event and all types of cars are welcome to join. 

Price is $250 for members and $270 for non-members.  You can become a GGLC member for $25 when you register and take the member discount immediately.

This event will be divided into 3 run groups running every 20 minutes. You will sign up for Novice,  Intermediate, or Advanced, depending on your skill level and experience. Advanced Group is for experienced drivers with 18+ track days/racing experience or equivalent. Intermediate Group is for drivers with a minimum of 8 track days experience, and Novice Group will be for drivers with at least 1 track day of prior experience.  Sign-up for whichever group is appropriate for your experience level. Since the group size is limited by Laguna Seca, it may be difficult to switch to another group if you feel uncomfortable or if you signed-up for the wrong run group.  Open wheeled cars will be allowed only in the Advanced Group.


Be aware that Laguna Seca will strictly enforce the 90dB sound limit. If you have a loud exhaust or intake, you should take appropriate measures to ensure you pass the sound meter. 

Each driver is responsible for ensuring that his car is in proper track condition.  We will not conduct a regular tech inspection of everyone’s cars but we will take a close look at any car that appears to be poorly maintained or that we receive reports about. Any cars with significant body damage or missing paint are likely to be subjected to an inspection.  Lemon’s and similar race cars are welcome at our events, but if you bring one, then you should expect us to visit your pit and make a close inspection of your car.  Anything that we feel is unsafe or likely to cause your car to break on-track will be reason for disqualification.  BIG no-nos include sketchy fuel lines, any fuel or water leaks, moderate or larger oil leaks, loose parts, cord showing or nearly showing thru tires.  Of course there are many other issues that could disqualify you as well.

For drivers experiencing mechanical failures that result in dropping oil on the track, damage to track property such as broken brake markers, etc., and deployment of the fire truck which results in any additional charges to us for clean-up, repair to track property, etc., we will consider whether to pass on these additional costs to the responsible driver on a case-by-case basis.

Please note that we will be making some adjustments to our normal track day due to the Coronavirus. Also, be prepared to jump through some Monterey County hoops to comply with their Covid requirements. We will do our best to keep you up to date on what those are.

1. There will be no beginner spots available since this would require us to put a coach in your passenger seat.

2. There will likely be no type of in-person sign-up at the track and we will conduct a “virtual driver’s meeting” by email. 

3. You should expect to receive an email a few days before the event that will explain all the exciting stuff that you would normally hear at our regular meeting    
   and you are required to read the WHOLE THING. 

4. At the track we will also likely conduct a brief “meeting” over the PA system with some important details and updates that you must listen to.

5. We will not be supplying any coffee, munchies, etc. and we will not have our large shade structure for everybody to hang out under. 

6. Everyone must maintain appropriate social distance of 6’ from persons whom you don’t live with and/or didn’t ride up in the same car. 

7. Each person must bring a face covering so that it will be available in case they need to interact with others at close range. 

Click here to sign up via MotorsportsReg. Within a few days of registering, you will receive a confirmation email with some event details.  Read this email.  If you do not receive a confirmation email, check your SPAM folder.  Another email will be sent out a few days before the event with Driver’s meeting info and probably more Covid stuff.  Read it!

See you at the track.

Registration for ButtonWillow track day (May 29, 2021) is now open

Chasing the R500 at Buttonwillow

Registration to the GGLC track day at Buttonwillow Raceway on May 29, 2021 are now open at MotorsportsReg.  This event is open to all types of cars.  Open top cars must have a roll bar or factory installed popup bar/rollover protection.  Open wheel cars will only be allowed in the Advanced Group.  We will not conduct a tech inspection of your car unless its appearance indicates that we should.  Lemon’s type cars are welcome but we will likely take a close look at it before  we let you on track.  Any fuel or water/water leaks or loose parts are reason for rejection.  Small oil leaks are acceptable.  You are responsible for making certain that your car is track-ready.  All cars must have 6″ tall numbers on both sides.  Pick any number.

We are running BOTH directions at this event, going clockwise in the morning and counterclockwise in the afternoon.  We did this a few years ago at Buttonwillow and again last season at Thunderhill 5-Mile and it was very popular both times.

We are running 3 groups and each group will get 7or 8 twenty minute sessions.  

Advanced Group is for Drivers with 15+ track days experience or equivalent.  This group will be open passing without point byes.

Intermediate Group is for drivers with 5+ track days experience or equivalent.  This group will allow open passing on most short and long straights without a point bye and passing in turns and braking zones with a point bye.

Novice Group is for drivers with 1+ track days experience or equivalent.  This group will allow open passing on the long straights only and passing with a point bye in turns and braking zones.

Sign up for the appropriate group.  If you decide at the track that you should be moved to a different group we can normally accommodate this.  

At this time we are not accepting Beginners drivers with zero days track experience.  If Covid condition improve so that we can put a coach in the passenger’s seat then we will allow beginners to signup

Damage to the track, walls, facilities, etc may be charged back to the responsible person.  Special charges for fire crews, oil cleanup, etc  may also be charged back to the responsible driver.  We will decide this on a case-by-case  basis.   

Price for this event is $195 if you register by January 31 and $215 after this date.  You can also get a additional $20 discount if you are a GGLC member or purchase a GGLC membership during registration.    We do not offer money back refunds.  If you cancel by May 14 you will get a credit for a future event that is transferable to other people.  No refunds or credits will be offered after May 14.  If Covid prevents the event from taking place or the government prevents you from traveling you will be offered a full refund.

The Driver’s meeting may be online or in-person depending on the Covid situation at the time.

Waiver’s will likely be signed online through Speedwaiver and you will receive a notice about this later.

Click here to sign up via MotorsportsReg

We also have the following events scheduled:
February 27 at Streets of Willows – registration open
March 29 at Laguna Seca (registration will open soon)
July 17 at Thunderhill West (not fully confirmed yet)
September 17 at Laguna (not fully confirmed yet)
October 5 Thunderhill 5-mile (not fully confirmed yet)

GGLC LIVE Virtual Tour of Classic Team Lotus (23-Jan-21)

Lotus 49 R2
Lotus 49 Chassis R2, the first DFV engined car to win a race, race prepped at Classic Team Lotus

It will be 5 years since the GGLC hosted a UK Lotus Tour. Our tour leader was none other than Richard Parramint. Richards long association with the Lotus factory, the Chapman family and numerous Lotus collectors, enthusiasts and racing teams made for bucket list touring of historic Lotus sites, Factory tours and more.

Which got us and Richard to thinking, why not a virtual tour of Classic Team Lotus! While there’s no substitute for physically seeing, touching, smelling and “feeling” the history ooze from the cars of CTL’s collection of historic Lotus F1 and Racers, we thought there would be interest in asking Richard to present a live virtual tour of CTL. 

Ex-Fittipaldi Type 72 Chassis getting rebuilt
Ex-Fittipaldi Type 72 Chassis getting rebuilt at Classic Team Lotus

Our FIRST ever LIVE GGLC Virtual Tour will be of Classic Team Lotus featuring Richard Parramint on Saturday, January 23, 2021 at 10:00am Pacific time (18:00 in Hethel).

To join the tour you will need the Zoom meeting app on your phone or PC and to register on MotorsportReg.com – msreg.com/GGLC-CTL-Tour. There’s no cost, but we are caping attendance to 90 attendees. 

While this virtual tour isn’t a substitute for an in person tour (CTL in-person tours happen once per month at £45 per person) it may serve as a teaser and entice you to add a trip to Norwich and Hethel to your bucket list (believe me it IS well worth a trip to the UK and at least 2 days in Norwich!).

So, save the date, download Zoom (if you’ve not done so), sign-up on Motorsportreg.com and then log-in on the morning of Jan 23rd!

Lotus 78
Lotus 78 undergoing maintenance at Classic Team Lotus

Thank You!

Happy New Year 2021

Maybe you’re one to gladly see 2020 in their review mirror and we can’t blame you! Cooped up at home, your hair has grown long and shaggy and you can’t remember the last time you actually ate in a restaurant with friends.

But, with your help, the GGLC eked out 7 track days at 3 different tracks, 6 autocrosses, and a half dozen drives. 

The thing is, in late March we didn’t think any of this would happen with a world in lock down. Yet, with your cooperation, patience and flexibility we followed and created health aware protocols, followed guidelines and were able to enjoy our cars.

We did this together. We did this as community. We did this by caring for the welfare of all and our love Lotus.


Let’s take this momentum into 2021, continue to find ways to enjoy our cars in a safe and healthy manner and look forward to a time we can shake hands and see each other’s smile!


GGLC autox Saturday June 27th at Cow Palace

Elises respect their elders

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the 2020 Golden Gate Lotus Club Autocross season!

Our first event of the year is scheduled to be held on Saturday June 27th at the Cow Palace, Daly City. Registration will open for members at 8pm PST on 7-June-2020.

Please note that this event is not yet confirmed and may be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. Full refunds will be given if the event is cancelled due to COVID-19 related reasons. Please refer to http://www.gglotus.org/ggcalend/covid.htm#autox for the GGLC COVID-19 policy and guidelines. If you are not willing to follow the GGLC and local COVID-19 orders, requirements and guidelines, then do not enter this event. Additionally, due to COVID_19 restrictions, lunch will not be provided and, as instructors will not be available, unfortunately this event will not be beginner friendly.

Please use the following link to register: https://www.motorsportreg.com/events/2020-gglc-autocross-event-1-cow-palace-golden-gate-lotus-club-autox-410514

Registration will open for non-members next week. The entry fee is the same as last year, $65 for GGLC members and $75 for non-members.

We have 6 classes that you can participate in, as well as a fun group. Please read over the details on the club page at http://www.gglotus.org/ggautox/ggautox.htm. For Lotus Elise/Exige/Evora drivers, please use the classification tool at http://www.gglotus.org/ggautox/classify.html to calculate your index points and your class to participate in. For non-Lotus cars, please use the appropriate SCCA class.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about this year’s events or any other autox topic. You can like us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/GoldenGateLotusClub and check out our event videos at http://www.youtube.com/goldengatelotusclub

Registration Open for Lotus Club Thunderhill 3-Mile Track Day, September 26, 2019


Come join the Golden Gate Lotus Club for this open track event at Thunderhill Raceway Park on Thursday, September 26, 2019.

We will be running the 3-mile Thunderhill East track in the standard counter-clockwise direction WITH THE BYPASS. All types of cars are welcome at our events. Click here to sign up via MotorsportReg.

Price is $165 for members and $185 for non-members. You can become a GGLC member for $25 when you register and take the member discount immediately.

This event will be divided into 3 run groups running every 20 minutes. You will sign up for Novice, Intermediate, or Advanced, depending on your skill level and your experience.

Advanced Group is for experienced drivers with 15+ track days/racing experience or equivalent. Intermediate Group is for drivers with a minimum of 7 track days experience, and Novice Group will be for drivers with at least 1 trackday of prior experience. Sign-up for whichever group is appropriate for your experience level. If you sign up for a particular group and decide at the track that you are not comfortable in that run group, ask a GGLC official to switch groups, we can usually accommodate this.

Open wheeled cars will be allowed only in the Advanced Group.

Be aware that Thunderhill has a sound limit of 104dB and that limit will be enforced.

We have a limited number of openings for Beginner drivers (ZERO DAYS EXPERIENCE ONLY!) who will receive 1-on-1 coaching from an experienced driver. Beginner drivers will run in the Novice Group.

Within a few days of registering, you will receive a confirmation email with some event details. Read this email. If you do not receive a confirmation email, check your SPAM folder.

See you at the track.

Scott & John