Feel free to slot this under “what the hell are they thinking”, but it appears through some reporting out of England that Lotus may be set to go rally. I should say ahead of time that I don’t see this happening whatsoever. The level of involvement Lotus has put forth in GT/Le Mans/INDYCAR makes sense. The British company has a circuit racing pedigree with their tiny and very nimble cars. Taking them off road onto the gravel is a business era of mammoth proportions in my mind. Stick to what you are good at and leave the rest alone right?
The report is from a single source which makes it skeptical to begin with. A story ran in the British publication CAR magazine. The car will be rear wheel drive and be made on a customer team basis only. There will be no factory squad. Further more, it is not going to compete at the top levels. Even if the car meets S2000 spec as some suggest it may, it is only 2WD.
My question is if this is true, why the hell is Lotus doing that? You have no rally pedigree and the only thing you can truly challenge is tarmac. How many people have ever seen an Exige tooling around on the gravel? Lotus need to be very careful with what they are doing here. They have made loud headlines with all of their future involvement. This product is simply pointless. Why not save your money and put it into something like your LMP challenger? I am going to take this report with a grain of salt, because it just doesn’t make any sense at all. The car is slated to debut in 2012 at the Frankfurt auto show.