LOTUS is bidding farewell to the combustion engine with the launch of the new Emira - its last conventionally powered model before entering the electrified age.
With the all-electric Evija hypercar already in the wings the iconic British sports car manufacturer now owned by Chinese automotive giants Geely is entering the last chapter of a line up that stretches back to 1948 with the Lotus Mk 1 which was based on the Austin 7.
True to form, the Emira has stunning lines with plenty of its design cues taken from the Evija which at almost £2 million apiece costs some 20 times as much.
And while only 130 examples of the Evija will be produced, the Emira is aimed at mass production with some 4,800 models a year coming off the line at Hethel in Norfolk where Geely has invested some £100 million since 2017.
Initially, the Emira will be powered by a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine from Toyota which Lotus has also used in its Exige and Evora models.
Developing between 360 to 400hp and mated to either manual, automatic or dual clutch transmissions, the Emira is said to be capable of 0 to 62mph in less than 4.5 seconds with a top speed of up to 180mph.
That engine will be joined by a 2.0-litre turbocharged i4 unit developed in conjunction with AMG - the performance division of Mercedes-Benz - which is due for release in the summer of 2022 and will feature a version of the world's most powerful four cylinder engine as used in the Mercedes-AMG A45 .
Prices for the Emira are expected to start from less then £60,000 and first deliveries of the car are slated for next spring.
Fuel consumption figures are still under homologation but Lotus says it is targeting emissions below 180g/km.
Matt Windle, Lotus managing director said: "The Emira is a game-changer for Lotus. It stands as a beacon of everything we have achieved to date in the transformation of the business, the embodiment of our progress. It is a highly significant milestone on our path to becoming a truly global performance car brand."
The Emira measures 4,412mm in length with a width of 1,895mm, height of 1,225mm and wheelbase of 2,575mm. - similar to that of the Evora.
With lightweight construction - in its lightest form it has a target weight of just 1,405kg - the car has been aerodynamically designed to perform both on the road and on the track.
Vertical LED headlamps are standard across the range with several other styling elements shared with the new Evija.
Lotus is describing the Emira as a junior supercar and unlike some of its models from old there is nothing primitive about the interior which includes plenty of leather, Alcantara and metal in the fixtures and trim.
A 12.3-inch multi-configurable instrument panel is complemented by a 10.3-inch infotainment system developed in conjunction with British hi-fi company KEF.
Other features include a flat-bottomed steering wheel, keyless operation, cruise control, rain-sensing wipers, electric folding door mirrors, rear parking sensors with front sensors as an option, an auto-dimming rear view mirror, curtain airbags, launch control (as part of an optional Lotus Drivers' Pack), and a stolen vehicle tracker.
Advanced driver assistance systems available on the Emira include adaptive cruise control, anti-collision system, fatigue alert, road sign information, vehicle speed limiter, lane departure warning, rear cross traffic alert, lane change assist.