A Lotus SUV Sounds Like it’s a Sure Thing at This Point


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The rumor that Lotus will build an SUV has been around for years. Back in 2015, Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Lotus, even told us he had plans for one. But despite all the talk, a high-riding Lotus never appeared. From the sound of things, though, the long-rumored SUV is back on track.

Speaking to Autocar, Gales said that under new owner Geely, Lotus has plans for several new models, one of which will be an SUV. “We will always have sports cars, but we’re looking at other segments,” said Gales. “The SUV market changes as well. It’s not just cars that are six feet high and wide now. It’s a huge market that’s becoming more segmented. There is a niche within that for a Lotus crossover that is light and aerodynamic and handles like nothing else.”

While Lotus plans to continue building sports cars in the U.K., the expanded lineup might end up being built elsewhere. “We stay in the U.K. for sports cars, what we do for other cars needs defining,” he said. But Gales sounds optimistic that any changes will be good for the company overall.

“We are still looking at the next generation,” said Gales. “There is an open book, which is good. We have a world-class automotive manufacturer behind us. I see it as a new chapter. One has closed and we can start afresh. It’s good news for us, good news for the region. There’s loads to do and I’m here to stay.”

Gales also doesn’t sound worried that having Chinese owners will force Lotus to change what it is. “We’re Lotus and we’re about handling, lightweight and aero, where nothing can beat us,” he said. “Lotus is like nothing else in the world. Our cars don’t have the most power, but it’s the feeling, the way it drives and handles.”

When asked if Lotus would source parts from its new owners, Gales wasn’t opposed to the idea. “We’ll be part of a big family, so why wouldn’t we?” he said. “There are bound to be synergies; we need to keep the identity of the brand. Using parts of other brands, the option is there, but we need to keep our identity. Lotus’s identity is light weight, aerodynamics, and handling.”

As much as we love cars like the Elise and the Evora, if Gales can build an SUV that sticks to the principles that make Lotus special, it will probably be one heck of an SUV.

Source: Autocar

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