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Saturday, December 2, 2023

EMIRA: Lotus’ most powerful four-cylinder machine ever

Captivating driving enthusiasts worldwide since its debut two years ago, the critically acclaimed and award-winning Lotus Emira V6 has secured its rightful place as the most accomplished Lotus sports car ever made.

With striking design, astonishing performance and benchmark ride and handling, its supercharged 3.5-litre powerplant matched to a choice of six-speed manual and automatic transmissions delivers a driving experience that could only be from Lotus.

Now, the appeal of this mid-engined two-seater is further enhanced by the addition of a four-cylinder engine which features state-of-the-art technologies to deliver incredible performance and remarkable efficiency. Supplied by technical partner Mercedes-AMG, the all-aluminium, turbocharged 2.0-litre unit is based on the world’s most powerful four-cylinder in series production.

It’s also fitting that, as the final mainstream combustion engine Lotus two-seater, the Emira is the most powerful four-cylinder from Lotus in a rich bloodline of iconic models including the Elise, Esprit, Europa, Elan and Elite. And, at 180bhp/litre, it also has the highest specific power output in the Emira range.

Like the renowned 400bhp supercharged V6, the four-cylinder car delivers all the performance and responsiveness that drivers expect – 0-62mph (0-100km/h) in just 4.4 seconds and a 180mph (290km/h) maximum speed – while bringing its own unique character to the Emira range. That character is enhanced by the inherent day-to-day usability and comfort of the smooth and rapid shifting dual-clutch transmission. It also offers the added advantages of lower fuel consumption and a target CO2 emissions figure of 208g/km (WLTP combined).

Powerful, responsive, efficient

Designed solely for high-performance applications, the 1,991cc engine features a cylinder block produced using the advanced chill-casting process: compared to conventional sand-casting methods used in high volume applications, this results in a uniform, fine-grained structure which delivers the high strength and durability needed to withstand the high loads generated. Following motorsport practise, the block is also of closed-deck design for maximum stiffness, and instead of conventional cast iron liners, the cylinder bores use a patented low-friction coating to save weight. For the optimal balance of high strength and low weight, both the steel crankshaft and aluminium pistons are forged.

The turbocharger is a ‘twin-scroll’ design, meaning the turbine housing is split into two separate ducts, matched to corresponding ducts in the exhaust manifold. This minimises exhaust gas pulsation interference, helping to improve the efficient exchange of gases in the cylinders. It also ensures that boost pressure builds up more rapidly, and to further enhance responsiveness, the shaft joining the compressor and turbine wheel runs in ultra-low-friction roller bearings. To manage boost pressure most effectively, the wastegate is electronically controlled.

This combination of advanced technologies, together with intake and exhaust systems developed by Lotus and optimised with a unique in-house calibration, ensure this remarkable engine can deliver an astonishing balance of power, torque and efficiency throughout its full operating range.

Generating 430Nm from 3,000-5,500rpm and 360bhp (365PS) at 6,600rpm before reaching a maximum speed of 7,200rpm, it ensures an authentic Lotus sports car driving experience while also being refined in day-to-day use.

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