In the past, the notion of the idea of a Lotus SUV, much less an electric version, seemed as if it was a punch line to a bad joke. In the end, the nature of EVs and SUVs is in opposition to the company’s founder Colin Chapman’s infamous principle which was “Simplify, then add lightness.” Lotus’ Eletre has, for the most part, adopted that old philosophy to the back of the house and has given its version the Ol’ Yeller way of doing things. While it’s likely to make Wheaties snort of car enthusiasts around the globe I’d say it’s both a necessity and a good thing. Let me explain.
2024 Lotus Eletre Powertrain & Specs
In 2024, the Lotus Eletre is a two-row electric luxury SUV, which comes with either a 905 or 603 horsepower dual motor drivetrain as well as a 112-kilowatt-hour battery which is suitable for an estimated maximum distance of 373 miles using the European cycle known as WLTP. If we use our less conservative EPA cycle, this would likely be approximately 290 miles. This isn’t the most impressive but will be more than sufficient for the majority of buyers.
Like with the majority of Lotus models over the years The drivetrain here is rated as good to excellent. It’s not particularly exceptional in the world of 1,200-hp cars cruising the streets. In addition, as has been the case for Lotus since the beginning of time the drivetrain isn’t the center at the center of attention. This honor belongs to the chassis, and it’s here that Lotus faces some difficult facts to confront about how it would like its Eletre seen by the general public.
In my time in my car, Lotus users wanted to make clear it is that the Eletre is a Lotus throughout. The Elektra isn’t, at least not in the traditional sense. It’s a massive, SUV, with a heavy body and optional 23-inch wheels. It’s not designed to operate like a sports car at any time. It’s certainly remarkable for what it is however, the traditional Lotus characteristics of a lively car, agile chassis, and fun controls that make you feel as if you’re a part of the car simply aren’t available here.
The Eletre marks Lotus its first attempt at the power of electric motors. Although this technology is established and has nearly completely replaced it as a primary technology The companies that are adept at programming the complex aspects and programming of this system have been working on it for some time. Porsche for instance is arguably the most accurate EPS technology and has been working on it for more than 10 years. What this signifies for Lotus is that, while the steering isn’t too bad and it was surprisingly precise and responsive, however, it didn’t feel like the kind of vehicle I’ve been used to from the company.
The Eletre’s air suspension tells the same. It’s fantastic overall. The handling is great with lots of compliance as well as great body control, however, it’s not particularly fun or exciting. However, it’s fair to say it was the debut taking place in Norway which has a notoriously slow speed limit (seriously what is the point of having the entire country limited to around 40 miles per hour? ) I wasn’t in a position to push the car beyond its limits.
Even during what was the “performance” portion of the launch, when we were inside the Eletre R and had an airstrip that was closed at our disposal, Lotus was keen to stop us from going too far. The launch control demonstration we took part in was restricted to a maximum speed of about 100 mph and there was an instructor in the right spot to enforce this. For the slalom, we were not permitted to switch it into track mode which is more permissive in fear that the car could get out of control.
Therefore, even though the Eletre does not accomplish its Lotus concept from a dynamic perspective, it does not mean that it’s useless or boring. I felt that it was a much more polished piece of equipment than I anticipated. The interior is fantastic and features a great set of materials that feel well-constructed and thoughtfully thought out. The test car was covered with fake suede that could make a rhino choke although I don’t like the idea, I know it’s an individual thing and the execution is quite great.
The infotainment center screen dominates the front-seat experience. This isn’t a problem, due to the responsiveness that the android-based Lotus HyperOS system controlling everything. Connectivity is great thanks to the numerous USB-C ports located in the front and back seat areas. Moreover, although the car I tested isn’t equipped with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto I’ve been assured that they’ll be coming soon through an online update.
Since it’s a contemporary luxury SUV, there are plenty of advanced driver-aid features available on the road. It includes features like auto high beams adaptive cruise blind spot alert and lane-keep assistance, among others. The coolest part however – and the thing that puts the Eletre ahead of the pack – is the three lidar sensors that can be deployed included in each Eletre. According to Lotus, they will allow the SUV to be prepared for the next level of 4 autonomy in driving. This, Lotus claims will be available shortly.
The detachable feature of the sensors is awesome since it cuts down wind resistance. This is beneficial for efficiency. Also, If people don’t like the way they look, they’ll not be able to see them when the car is in a parking spot. When it comes to reducing wind resistance, you might observe that the body of the Eletre is incredibly porous (to use Lotus terminology). The scoops and vents are real and work to give this huge-ass SUV a slick 0.26 drag coefficient. In comparison, it’s only 0.1 centimeters over a one-of-a-kind Honda Insight and 0.3 cm superior to the Ford Mustang Mach-E. The design can be polarizing (I am a fan in the flesh) however, the results are difficult to deny.
If you’re interested in a Lotus Eletre, you will be able to buy it in three varieties: Eletre, Eletre S and the highest-spec Eletre R. The car I was most comfortable with was the Eletre S that Lotus believes is the most popular. The R was on our runway as well as a slalom ride. We do not have US pricing at this time, however, there is UK pricing, and can therefore speculate about what the thing will cost once it makes its way to the States.
2024 Lotus Eletre Price & Release Date
The base Eletre is priced at the equivalent of 89,500 GBP. This is approximately $114,000, however, that cost also includes the value-added tax (VAT) that isn’t paid which means that you’ll get 20 percent off the price right away. Other variables affect the price, but we’d estimate the base Eletre around $95k within the US. The Eletre S test car I drove was about $128,500. It’s pretty much loaded with all options. Eletre R theoretically would start with around $122,000, including options.
In addition to prices, Lotus has some gargantuan challenges to face for it to be able to sell the Eletre in large quantities across the US. The first is that the majority of non-car customers don’t comprehend the concept of what Lotus is, and the old-fashioned talk doesn’t mean anything to the general public. Also, nobody would consider Lotus the current dealer network “robust,” and people need physical stores to purchase and maintain the cars. It’s also possible that the Eletre is manufactured in China could pose a challenge for some potential buyers.
Lotus isn’t alone to offer an automobile made in China and Both GM as well as Volvo/Polestar already have done this, however, Americans tend to not be easiest to adjust to situations such as that. And for those who know the meaning of Lotus and can get them to accept the notion that the company can create a reliable SUV that’s large, heavy, and electrically powered will be the biggest challenge. To address these problems, Lotus has been on a hiring spree, and according to the marketing team is currently developing solutions.
In light of everything I’ve talked about, I believe that Lotus could change the world by launching the Eletre. Lotus needs a large vehicle that appeals to the mass market because sports cars simply don’t make the money and have proven it repeatedly. The Eletre is a stunning design, great to drive, has decent performance, and is a good value if it can prevent prices from going beyond $100k; it could provide adequate competition to Tesla Model X or the BMW iX. Tesla Model X or the BMW iX.
The Eletre isn’t perfect, no doubt however, it’s still a car worth celebrating since, in my opinion, the more Lotuses that are on the road the better. As an added benefit getting more cash into the company could be a boon for Lotus’s sports cars, which is worth celebrating too.