Lotus has been in predicament for some time now – lacking the financial means to bring new generations of its vehicles to market – but in compensation has been pushing the envelope with numerous special editions and versions.
Now that Geely officially has command over the British sports car brand you’d think they’re busy behind the drawing board – but we all know it’ll take years before a new generation model will appear, even with the Chinese parent’s huge pile of cash for speedy research and development. So, Lotus is back with another performance version for one of its models – the new GT430 Sport, building upon the regular GT430 that came just this July. Packing either the standard manual or automatic, the GT430 Sport is catering to a wider array of customers, with the GT 430 only offered with a manual. The Sport trim also ditches some of the track-ready features, such as the huge rear wing and the sporty front diffuser, but still keeps things such as the AP Racing brakes, the two-way adjustable Ohlins dampers, and the Torsen limited-slip differential.
And it’s actually even faster, although it still sues the same 3.5-liter supercharged V6, good for 430 horsepower (320 kilowatts) and 325 pound-feet (440 Newton-meters) of torque, lending it a sprint to 60 miles per hour (96 kilometers per hour) in just 3.6 seconds. That’s a tenth of a second better than the GT430, while the six-speed automatic gearbox has been tweaked for very fast shifts, complete with interior command from lightweight aluminum paddles. The carbon fiber machine tips the scales at a mere 2,751 pounds (1,248 kilograms) dry, ditching 22 pounds (10 kilograms) compared to the GT430, and reaching a power-to-weight ratio of 345 hp per ton. Max speed stands at 196 mph (315 kph), so this is the fastest production Lotus ever.