Take a Look at Lotus' Fastest Car: The 3-Eleven

The Lotus Elise

The Lotus automobile company has had its fair share of ups and downs over the past several decades. From constantly changing owners to low sales, Lotus has managed to power through it all in order to release the wildly anticipated 3-Eleven.

This new model—the fastest ever produced by Lotus—is a huge step forward for fans of the beloved, though beleaguered British auto maker. It signifies a new era for Lotus, and a re-boot of their 50 year old brand. Read on to find out what incredible features have been included in the all-new Lotus 3-Eleven sports car.

The Lotus Brand’s Auto History

Lotus Engineering Ltd. was the brainchild of two British engineers: Colin Chapman and Colin Dare. In 1958, the pair developed their very first manufacturing unit in an old barn stable, where they built Formula 1 race cars. Shortly after, a second division of their company set out to make road cars to sell to private racers and car fanatics.

The company’s first profitable car was the Lotus Elan—a two-seater, high speed convertible. This success was followed by the popular Lotus 7 and then a range of vehicles boasting the company’s 900 series engines. Today, Lotus is best known for their continued manufacturing of Formula 1 vehicle. The company has made a name for itself, producing cars that students in mechanic college will surely recognize, such as the T128, the Lotus Evora and the Lotus T125 Exos.

What Makes the Lotus 3-Eleven Special?

The 3-Eleven is part of Lotus’ new generation of sports cars, and is set to be the company’s fastest production model to date. The new vehicle was unveiled at the 2015 Goodwood Festival of Speed, which takes place annually in West Sussex, England. Depending on the owner’s preference, the new Lotus comes in a track version and a road version, both hovering around the rather steep price tag of $180,000.

However, this price tag does come with some pretty impressive specs. The new Lotus is made mostly from aluminum, which means it weighs in at a meager 2000 pounds (a typical vehicle weighs around 4,000 pounds.) In terms of speed, automotive service technicians will be impressed to hear that this tiny vehicle boasts 450 horsepower, and can travel up to 180 miles per hour (or 289 km/h). Buyers have the option of purchasing the add-on aero package, which delivers 215kg of downforce, so the 3-Eleven can zip effortlessly around corners.

One of the most iconic features of Lotus’ vehicles is their minimalistic cockpit. You won’t see any infotainment systems on these cars—just dials. Other unique features include a roll over bar cover, and a quick release steering wheel. Production of the 3-Eleven is limited to 311 cars—which means that rare car enthusiasts will be lining up to get their hands on this exclusive new vehicle.

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