Lotus has unveiled its new Eco Elise – a ‘green’ project which looks beyond the usual tailpipe CO₂ emissions, instead taking into account all aspects of environmental performance.
Having already achieved improvements at its Hethel site during 2007 – including a 14 per cent electricity use reduction, 11 per cent water use reduction, and 57 per cent of waste product now being recycled – the firm has now focused on greening up its Elise model.
Sustainable materials have been used within the new vehicle, including hemp (locally produced to reduce carbon miles), sisal and biodegradable eco wool, which has been awarded the EU Flower certificate in recognition of its environmental credentials. Water based paint technology has also been adopted to reduce solvent emissions and energy use.
A gear display alerts the driver to the optimum gear changing point, with roof solar panels installed to help power the electrical systems and displays, and the vehicle is 32 kilogrammes lighter than the standard Elise S model, allowing the engine to perform more efficiently.
“The Lotus brand values of lightweight, fuel efficient, and high performance are more relevant today than they ever have been,” said CEO Mike Kimberley. “We are keen to ensure that Lotus as a company and its products offer an ethical, green option that appeals to our customers.”
The Eco Elise will be exhibited at the British International Motor Show.