Once again, Lotus Cars has exceeded expectations with the recent launch of the Lotus Exige Race 380. Let’s take a closer look at what this new track-ready hardtop has to offer.
Like all other previous track versions by Lotus, this latest the Exige Race 380 too cannot be used on public roads. With a basic price of $145,000, this Lotus Exige for sale is the most accessible mid-engined race car. Compared with similar models by Porsche, Lamborghini or even Ferrari for that matter, this track-ready hardtop is the most affordable. And it still packs power into its punch with a 0-60 mph in just 3.2 seconds. It is lighter and faster than its predecessor, the Exige 350.
The Exige Race 380 comes fully equipped with all the usual accessories like drivetrain and driver information systems which puts the car on par with other racing cars in its class. It is designed with the Lotus Cup series and other clubman championships in mind. The 3.5 liter supercharged V6 engine delivers 375 hp at 6,700 rpm, with an Xtrac 6-speed sequential transmission to give the car the required boost.
The new Exige Race 380 is innovatively designed to provide options making this particular model a race-friendly one. The car is now lighter with a dry weight of 988 kg. This has been achieved by doing away with the road car headlights and airbags, and the conversion of some parts into polycarbonate and carbon fiber materials. 240 kg at 170 mph creates more downforce than ever, which is aided by the addition of vents in the front bodywork, around the front wheels.
A front splitter has been incorporated to bring down pressure below the car, and the rear wing takes care of airflow reduction at the rear end.
The titanium center-mounted exhaust serves the dual purpose of decreasing the weight of the car by another 10 kg, and creating a more pleasing engine sound. Other extra features include the usual racing accessories an integrated roll cage, a carbon fiber racing seat adaptable to a HANS device, fire extinguisher, battery isolator and tow hooks at the right places.
The Exige 380 can also be integrated with standard telemetry, using the onboard GPS system.
So, what is it that puts the Exige Race 380 on par with the other track biggies? It’s certainly not its good looks – the car has a rugged profile at best. Aesthetics were not the prime consideration during the production of this beast. The main focus has been a slick combination of weight reduction and speed enhancement by using lighter components, actually deleting some of them and enhancing aerodynamics.
Lotus Cars has proved once again that they are capable of creating some of the most cleverly crafted track treasures. So, while the Exige Race 380 may not win hearts though its good looks, you can be rest-assured that racing this latest track toy from Lotus is bound to be a fun-filled experience, with the thrills that only racing car owners and drivers can understand.