Lotus and their new fully electric hypercar-to-be, the Evija, has made its Middle Eastern debut, at least in its pre-production form. It’ll be some time yet before the British automaker, now owned by Geely, finishes all the engineering and operation hurdles that lay ahead and the first official example is ready for delivery.
That small matter hasn’t deterred the them from showing it off at at a Lotus retail outlet in Dubai, however. Surely, the team must have calculated that the expense incurred would be minor compared to the potential influx of new customers the car’s presence could attract.
Unfortunately, residents of the United Arab Emirates (and its neighbouring countries) have just a few days to come and admire the two-seat EV before the prototype is due back in Hethel, prior to which it will also stop over in the capital city of Abu Dhabi as well as a series of private viewings.
Nothing new has been revealed about the Evija, unsurprisingly, as it was only a couple of months ago that Lotus pulled the wraps off their newest project, shocking many in terms of the car’s beauty and the sheer scale of its technical ambition.
Granted, Lotus has come a long way and now has the backing of a major Chinese automaker, but the company intends to leapfrog from the design and production of lightweight mid-engine sports cars to creating a highly advanced electric hypercar made from space-age materials and, supposedly, enough power to be declared the most powerful production car ever - all mostly from scratch.
Called Type 130 in its earliest phases, the Evija will feature a decently capacitive 70kWh lithium ion battery, co-developed with Williams Advanced Engineering, to supply an electric motor at each wheel, each with their own gearbox. The four-wheel-four-motor configuration makes for a combined output of 1,470kW and 1,700Nm.
Thanks to a combination of aluminium, magnesium, and plenty of carbon fibre, Lotus is targeting 1,680kg kerb, which is featherweight only by other EV standards. Any way you cut it, this will be the most portly Lotus by a country mile. That said, those immense reserves of power result in 100km/h from rest delivered in under 3 seconds, sub-9 seconds to 299km/h, and a top speed over 320km/h.
Inferable from the way the Evija is designed, it will make use of active aerodynamics to ensure the car’s sci-fi body stays planted at speed, a responsibility it shares with a set of Pirelli P-Zero tyres that we suspect are purpose-developed for this fitment.
Inside, the car again intends to impart a futuristic air with an absolute minimum in ornamentation, substituted with bare carbon fibre alongside touch-sensitive switchgear, driver-specific controls, and a single digital instrument cluster.
As previously expressed, it’s an ambitious undertaking, and one that involves areas and disciplines Lotus have no prior direct experience with. And they intend to have it all done by some time next year, in 2020. Godspeed.