Featherweight Lotus Elise Sprint launches 2017 Elise range


Overall, it's 41kg lighter than the auto it replaces and means the Elise Sprint models weigh in at just 798kg. The result is a saving of 41kg, giving the Elise Sprint a dry weight of 798kg ─ almost half that of a Ford Focus RS.

To achieve the weight-saving made by the Elise Sprint, Lotus has applied carbon fibre to the bucket seats, access panel, roll hoop cover and engine cover. Under the skin, lighter parts have led to a 10kg weight loss across the Elise range, while aerodynamics have also improved.

The result? The new 2017 Lotus Elise Sprint, with a nifty 41 kilogrammes shaved from the kerbweight.

Some 21 years ago, the first-generation Lotus Elise weighted 1521 lbs. without its fluids.

The base Lotus Elise Sprint starts at £37,300, while the Sprint 220 costs £44,300.

Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus Cars, famously said "adding power makes you faster on the straights; subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere", and Lotus continues to adhere to this maxim.

On sale next month priced from £32,300, the Sprint uses more carbonfibre to trim weight to 798kg, and in its most potent Sprint 220 supercharged 1.8-litre form can accelerate from 0-60mph in 4.1sec with its 217bhp. The Sprint is marked out with unique design tweaks, including a matte black rear fascia, black wheels, subtle side stripes and Sprint badging.

This is the biggest cut to the mass of the Elise since launch, Lotus claims. The vehicle is 23kg lighter than its predecessor, but with all lightweight options included that number increases to 40kg. Full details are on hold, but orders are open now.

"The addition of the Elise Sprint to Lotus" model range comes amid the arrival of an updated version of the Elise.

For both the standard Sport and lighter Sprint models there are two petrol engines to choose.