- Lotus revealed technical specs on its upcoming Eletre SUV — the brand’s first EV and its first crossover — on Tuesday.
- Three trim levels will be available, sharing a 112.0-kWh battery pack, and a range up to 373 miles using the WLTP standard.
- On the performance front, Lotus promises a 0.60 time as low as 2.95 seconds with the 905-horsepower Eletre R.
- The base Eletre and the Eletre S are slightly less powerful (only 603 horsepower), and cover the 0-60 sprint in 4.5 seconds.
- Only European pricing is out right now, but the Eletre starts at around $102,780 (based on exchange rates), rising to $137,800 for the top-spec R.
- Lotus’ first EV will reach U.S. shores in 2024, so we should know specific pricing for the American market sometime next year.
Lotus gave us glimpses of its first all-electric SUV earlier this year, but now we actually have some firm (European spec) numbers for the Eletre. Most importantly for the sports car brand’s fans, the automaker disclosed performance figures, so we can check out how its first crack at both the EV and the SUV market stacks up against the competition.
In short: You’ll certainly have plenty of power on tap. Three versions of the 2024 Lotus Eletre will be available, with the base model followed by the mid-range S and the high-performance R. They will all pack the same 112.0-kWh battery, as well as a dual-motor, all-wheel drive layout. The key difference between the Eletre R and its lesser siblings is the power output, with the fastest trim putting out 905 horsepower and 726 lb-ft of torque. With that sort of grunt, Lotus says the flagship trim is the “fastest dual-motor pure electric SUV”.
More on the 2024 Lotus Eletre, by the numbers
The base Eletre and the S versions aren’t lacking for oomph, in their own right. Those models put out 602 horsepower and 523 lb-ft of torque, all of which hits the ground through a single-speed setup. The R, instead, uses a far more powerful 603 horsepower rear motor, and it adopts a two-speed system like the Porsche Taycan 4S and Turbo, enabling a 165-mph top speed.
In the 0-60 contest, the 2024 Lotus Eletre R should make the sprint in 2.95 seconds. Not that the base versions will be slow, either: they’ll hit 60 in 4.5 seconds, and have only a slightly lower 160 mph top speed.
Using Europe’s WLTP standard, Lotus claims a range of up to 373 miles for the Eletre. DC fast charging works up to 350 kW, allowing the car to charge from 10-80% state of charge in 20 minutes. Opt for the Eletre R, and that range figure drops to 304 miles. Mind you, WLTP numbers typically exceed EPA figures by a wide margin, so I’d expect to see range estimates in the upper-200 to lower-300-mile range when we get U.S.-market specs.
For a company that built its reputation on lightness, there’s one curious omission from today’s announcement: weight. For all its straight-line speed, adaptive air suspension, active anti-roll system (in the Eletre R) and available carbon ceramic brakes, we still have to wait for official word on that. There’s only so much you can do to keep the heft at bay, so it’s likely we’ll see Lotus’ electric SUV weigh in somewhere around 5,000 to 5,500 pounds — in line with similarly sized competition.
It’s not your old-school Elise inside
Given Lotus’ past, you may expect something of a stripped-down interior that emphasizes lightness and simplicity. Not so, as the Eletre brings a host of luxurious looking materials and all the tech you’d expect in a modern EV. That includes an “intelligent cockpit” infotainment system with a 15.1-inch screen and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto support. The Eletre also uses parent company Geely’s ECARX dual-chip system, featuring two Qualcomm 8155 processors that are supposed to make the system snappy to use and allow over-the-air updates.
There’s a 1,380-watt, 15-speaker KEF Premium Audio system on board, as well as 12-way adjustable front seats and quad-zone climate control. You also get five distinct drive modes, 22-inch wheels and matrix LED headlights. You can even get a four-seater version by way of the “Executive Seat Pack” to make it feel more high-class.
If you aren’t a big fan of huge 22-inch wheels — I don’t blame you — you can get 20-inchers instead. Or, if 22s aren’t enough, Lotus will sell 23-inch wheels too, at least in the UK.
As you’d expect, the 2024 Lotus Eletre features a wide range of semi-autonomous driving tech. That includes onboard lidar sensors, and the automaker promises it will open up greater autonomous capability (where regulations allow it) in figure software updates. Eventually, Lotus says, you’ll be able to “drive” around the Nürburgring autonomously. That’s a bit counterintuitive to me, but perhaps that will open up the experience for people who couldn’t drive the track themselves. Of course, it will probably be a long while before the Eletre’s self-driving capability is that good.
More to come
When it goes on sale in Europe, buyers will have to pay the equivalent of around $102,800 for the base 2024 Lotus Eletre. The S rings in around $120,000, while the R tops out at $137,800 (at current exchange rates against the British pound sterling). Pricing will be different for the U.S. market, though we’ll have to wait and see exactly how much.
Lotus builds the Eletre in Wuhan, China, meaning this car will not be eligible for the revamped $7,500 EV tax credit here in the States. The automaker may price the car more aggressively against its European competition with that in mind, and they may price the base version under $100,000.
The first Eletre SUVs should reach U.S. buyers by 2024, so we’ll have firmer pricing information sometime in the next year or so.