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The New Lotus 3-Eleven Racecar Is Ready to Hit the Road (But Only in Britain)

Lotus claims the sports car will embarrass its more expensive rivals...

To emphasize that speed is the name of the game, Lotus recently unveiled its brand-new Lotus 3-Eleven at the 2015 Goodwood Festival of Speed in West Sussex, England. Available in both road and race versions, the approximately $106,500 racecar is the British marque’s quickest and most expensive production car yet. A revised V-6 supercharged engine—first seen in the Lotus Evora 400—powers the 450 hp 3-Eleven, which can achieve zero to 60 mph in less than 3 seconds, with a top speed of 180 mph for the road version. To achieve these speeds, the 3-Eleven is manufactured from extremely lightweight composite materials, making the vehicle’s body 40 percent lighter than the standard fiberglass equivalent. Aerodynamic details, such as dramatic side scallops and a streamlined roll-bar cover, assist in the top speeds.

Additional features include: an open cockpit that foregoes doors, a windscreen, and a roof in favor of a roll bar, which fully encloses the rear cage; an optional passenger seat on the road version; a quick-release steering wheel; and Lotus sport seats with either a four-point harness (road version) or six-point harness (race version). The race version also features a data-logger system, a fire extinguisher, and a battery kill switch.

Only the race version will be available in the United States, and Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales says the car is perfectly capable of “embarrassing far more expensive rivals.” The 3-Eleven, which can be ordered now, will be limited to just over 300 models in total, and production is scheduled to start in February 2016, with deliveries beginning in April. (lotuscars.com)

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