Lotus Cars Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

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Lotus Cars

Lotus is a British manufacturer of sports and cars. famous for its Elise, and Evora sports cars and for the successful Team Lotus in 1. Lotus Cars is based at the site of RAF Hethel. a World War II in Norfolk. The company designs and race and production automobiles of weight and fine handling [ 1 ] It also owns the engineering Lotus Engineering, which has in the United Kingdom, United Malaysia and China.


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The company was formed as Engineering Ltd. by engineers Chapman and Colin Dare, graduates of University College, in 1952. The four letters in the of the logo stand for the initials of founder, Anthony Colin Chapman.

The first factory was in old behind the Railway Hotel in North London. Team which was split off from Engineering in 1954, was active and in Formula One racing from to 1994. The Lotus Group of was formed in 1959.

This was up of Lotus Cars Limited and Components Limited . which on road cars and customer car production, respectively. Lotus Limited became Lotus Limited in 1971 but the newly entity ceased operation in the year. [ 2 ]

The company moved to a purpose factory at Cheshunt in 1959 [ 3 ] and 1966 the company has occupied a factory and road test at Hethel, near Wymondham. site is the former RAF Hethel and the test track uses of the old runway.

Financial troubles, of Chapman [ edit ]

By 1980, Lotus was in serious financial Production had dropped from units per year to a mere The combined reasons were the world was in the middle of an economic sales in the key United States had virtually collapsed and, as of the original model range had redesigned or replaced, the cars seen as boring and technically the times by potential customers. [ 4 ]

In 1982, Chapman came to an with Toyota over an on intellectual property and applied This initially resulted in Engineering helping to develop the Mk2 Supra. also known as the Celica XX. Secondly it allowed to launch the new Lotus Excel to the ageing Lotus Eclat. using chassis components the Toyota parts bin enabled the to be sold for £1,109 less the outgoing Eclat. [ 4 ]

Looking to re-enter the North market, Chapman was approached by law professor and investment banking Joe Bianco, who proposed a new and separate States sales company for By creating an unprecedented tax-incentived (wherein each investor a specially personalised Lotus Esprit), [ 5 ] the new American company, Performance Cars Inc. was able to provide fresh to the Group Lotus in the United Former Ferrari North general manager John was brought in to run LPCI, which the remarkable Giugiaro -designed Esprit for the first time. US began to quickly jump triple digits annually. [ 6 ]

died of a heart attack in at the age of 54, having begun life an son and ended a multi-millionaire industrialist in Britain. At the time of his death, the car had built tens of thousands of racing and road cars, and won the One World Championship seven

At the time of his death, both and Lotus were linked the DeLorean Motor Company over the use of UK Government subsidies for the of the DeLorean DMC-12. for which had designed the chassis. Chasing sums of money which had from the DeLorean company, was besieged by Inland Revenue who imposed an £84 million legal assessment around the company and all of its [ 7 ]

With Group Lotus bankruptcy in 1983, through an from his friend Mark [ 7 ] English accountant and entrepreneur Wickins. the founder of the worlds vehicle remarketing business Car Auctions. agreed to become the new chairman. [ 7 ] Taking a combined 29% stake in Group Lotus, [ 8 ] negotiated with the Inland and then brought in new investors: bank Schroeder-Wagg (14%); [ 8 ] Ashcroft, Baron Ashcroft Bermudian operating company (14%); [ 9 ] Sir Anthony Bamford of JCB [ 8 ] Wickins oversaw a complete in the companies’ fortunes, which in him being called The saviour of [ 7 ] [ 10 ]

International ownership [ edit ]

although having employed Peter Stevens to revamp the and design two new concept cars, [ needed ] by 1985 the British recognised that they the required capital to invest in the new model development to production, and to find a major motor buyer. [ 8 ] In January 1986, oversaw the majority sale of the Lotus companies and 100% of American–based LPCI to General with engineer Bob Eaton a big car fan. [ 8 ] After four of controlling but co-owning Group with Toyota, the Japanese sold out to GM. By October 1986, GM had a 91% stake in Group Lotus for million, which allowed to legally force the company [ 8 ]

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On 27 August 1993, GM sold the for £30 million, to A.C.B.N. Holdings of Luxembourg. a company controlled by businessman Romano Artioli. who owned Bugatti Automobili In 1996, a majority share in was sold to Proton. a Malaysian car listed on the Kuala Lumpur Exchange .

Operations [ edit ]

Presently as Group Lotus plc, it is into Lotus Cars and Engineering.

As well as sports car the company also acts as an consultancy, providing engineering of suspension —for other car Lotus’ powertrain department is for the design and development of the 4-cylinder engine found in many of Vauxhall. Opel. Saab.

and Saturn cars. The US Lotus and Exige models used the VVTL-i I4 from Toyota’s Celica GT-S and the Matrix XRS is no longer available new. The new has the same V6 as the Evora and is not available in US as a legal vehicle.

Michael took over as Acting executive officer of the Company and its from May 2006. He chaired the Committee of Lotus Group Limited (LGIL) established in 2006, with Syed Abidin (managing director of Holdings Berhad) and Badrul (non-executive director of Proton Berhad). LGIL is the holding of Lotus Group Plc.

Kimberley retired as CEO on 17 July [ 11 ] replaced on 1 October 2009 by the Senior Vice-President for Commercial at Ferrari. Dany Bahar. intended to drive the brand into the expanding global goods sector, effectively from the companies traditional weight and pure driving simplicity.

Bahar was suspended as CEO on 25 May on a temporary basis, while an into his conduct was undertaken. [ 12 ] announced on 7 June 2012 the of Bahar’s employment, and the appointment of Farikullah as the new chief operating [ 13 ]

Formula One motorsport [ edit ]

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