Lotus takes the top off Exige S
Lotus is adding an Exige S Roadster to its lineup, based on the new Exige we saw at the Frankfurt auto show. Unfortunately the road-car version will not come to the United States.
The Roaster is powered by the same 345-hp V6 as in the hardtop Exige, as well as in the bigger Evora. Arriving at 60 mph takes just 3.8 seconds. Torque is rated at 295 lb-ft. Even with the extra mass, the Exige is still a lightweight at 2,570 pounds.
The Exige S Roadster uses a roll-back soft top, but only for the middle portion of the roof, targa style.
The 3.5-liter is sourced from Toyota, but Lotus adds a Harrop HTV 1320 supercharger. Peak power comes at 7,000 rpm, peak torque comes at 4,500 rpm. A six-speed manual will be the only transmission offered at launch. Lotus says paddle shifters will be “considered subject to demand.” Top speed is restricted to 145 mph in the Roadster, regardless of the soft top position.
The Exige S uses a fully independent double wishbone suspension with front and rear antiroll bars. Bilstein gas dampers and Eibach springs are at the corners, along with AP Racing four-piston brake calipers and cross-drilled rotors. Wheels measure 17 inches in front and 18 in back, both shod with Pirelli P-Zero Corsa tires.
Fuel economy is rated at 19.5 mpg in the city and 37.2 on the highway on the European cycle, which always skews higher than our measurement.
The Exige S Roadster costs exactly the same as the hardtop, $79,815, converted from British pounds at today’s exchange rate.
Now, like we said, the Exige S Roadster will not come to the U.S., at least willingly, but we do get the Exige V6 Cup and Exige V6 Cup R racing variants. Those cost $98,950 and $109,950, respectively.
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