A sharp, focused toy to complete the Lotus 50th celebration editions.
To celebrate the 50-year anniversary of their move to Hethel, Lotus has been unveiling a range of special edition models packed with better performance, looks, and exclusivity. The final piece of the celebration is the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition – a sparkling candle of excitement that won’t easily be blown out.
The new Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition is based on the Exige Sport 350 that took the platform to the hardcore reaches of road-legal performance. The new 50th anniversary celebration model takes it a few steps further with standard features that cut even more weight and edition-exclusive visual enhancements.
“The Lotus Exige is the quickest point-to-point sports car on the road; nothing can match its levels of accessible performance and grip. It’s lightweight, responsive and exceedingly fast, with the purity expected of a Lotus. It is a real beast that needs taming but it won’t bite back,” said Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc.
Sitting behind the cabin of the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition is a supercharged 3.5-liter Toyota V-6 engine churning out 345 horsepower at 7,000 RPM and 295 lb-ft. of torque at 4,500 RPM. That’s good enough to send the lightweight special edition model to 60 mph from rest in just 3.7 seconds and on its way to a 170 mph top speed. All that power will only be transferred through the standard six-speed manual gearbox with an aesthetically-pleasing exposed machined and cast aluminum gear-change mechanism.
“This Exige 350 Special Edition joins the Evora and Elise editions that we have already produced to celebrate our half century in Hethel and our connection to Norfolk. Judging by the demand for the other models, I expect that the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition will sell out quickly as it combines exclusiveness and limited production wrapped up in a great design.”
Part of that exclusiveness comes from the lightweight upgrades that are now standard. A total of 170 lbs. has been cut compared to the previous-generation Exige S. On top of that, these lightweight additions save another 57 lbs. over the Exige Sport 350.
To achieve those impressive corner-carving figures, the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition was equipped with a new louvered tailgate panel, lighter lithium-ion battery, forged alloy wheels, carbon fiber seats, new engine mounts, lightweight center console, and two-piece ventilated brake discs.
The lightweight components work perfectly with the revised aerodynamics of the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition. Here, a new front access panel directs more air into the radiator while engine cooling is improved through the lightweight louvered tailgate. The prominent rear wing, flat underbody, and mighty rear diffuser work together to generate approximately 93 lbs. of downforce at 100 mph for improved stability and handling.
The taught suspension of the Lotus Exige Sport 350 is retained in the new Exige 350 Special Edition. The special geometry and stiffer springs work wonders with the lightweight forged wheels finished in black to help carve up corners on the track. Forceful stopping power comes from four-piston AP Racing brake calipers positioned at the front and rear with bright red calipers.
The new Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition will be available in Essex Blue, Old English White, Dark Metallic Grey, and Motorsport Black exterior colors with contrasting racing stripes. The front splitter, rear wing, front access panel, roof panel, side mirrors, and rear transom are all finished in matte black. Inside, customers can choose from black leather or alcantara with bespoke contrast stitching.
Only 50 examples of the Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis to close out the 50th anniversary celebration. Pricing for the celebratory model will start at £61,900 in the UK.
Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition Specifications
Displacement: 3.5 liters
Number of Cylinders: V-6
Maximum Horsepower: 345 / 350 PS / 258 kW at 7,000 RPM
Maximum Torque: 295 lb-ft. / 400 Nm at 4,500 RPM
Acceleration 0-60 mph: 3.7 seconds
Acceleration 0-62 mph: 3.9 seconds
Top Speed: 170 mph / 274 km/h
Lotus Exige 350 Special Edition Gallery
Source: Lotus Group plc