Lotus Eletre takes its first laps in Quebec – AutoMedia

The Eletre, Lotus’ first family car and first electric vehicle, has made several appearances in Quebec in recent days. To promote its upcoming arrival, the manufacturer handed over a pre-production prototype for a few days to its two dealerships: Lotus Ville de Québec, which opened its doors last spring, and Lotus Montréal, a dealership operated by the company John Scotti Automotive forever and ever. Bernard Durand (photo above), the marque specialist for the Montreal dealership, introduced us to this little-known new product to expand Lotus’ customer base.

“When you combine a big name like Lotus with a practical layout and exciting performance, it’s certain that you can attract customers who would never consider buying an Elise or an Evora, the brand’s two sports cars,” explains Mr Durand.

The British brand, which was taken over by Chinese group Zhejiang Geely Holding in 2017, also describes the EV as “a new car. lifestyle desirable for the next generation of Lotus customers.” Because we have to admit that until now, the brand’s sports cars have not been very practical for shopping with children in the market!

Multiply the output by 100

Geely does not intend to keep Lotus in the group of small boutique companies. While before its takeover by the Chinese manufacturer, the annual production volume of this brand was around 1,500 units, by 2028, the year of the brand’s 80th anniversary, it intends to increase this production to 150,000 cars per year.

With this in mind, the Eletre will be to Lotus what the Cayenne was to Porsche since its controversial launch in 2002. On the one hand, it will be able to replace the four-door SUVs and electric vehicles that two-seater buyers buy Lotus from. On the other hand, this family vehicle will allow the new father, who until then dreamed of driving a sports car of the brand, to have a Lotus steering wheel in his hands.

Eletre will not be the only family product of the brand. Last September, Lotus unveiled the Emeya, the first sedan in its history, another new electric model. When it arrives in Quebec in the fall of 2024, shortly after the first Eletre, the sedan will be an alternative offered to buyers of the Porsche Taycan, Tesla Model S, BMW i7, Mercedes-Benz EQS sedan and others of the sexes.

Please note that like the Eletre, this sedan is not from England. It will be assembled at parent company Geely’s factory in Wuhan, China. Different times, different customs.

A reputation to build

Bernard Durand acknowledges that the new commercial vehicle remains unknown to the general public. During the two days he had the pre-production Eletre, around twenty customers agreed to test it. He admits that this vehicle is less attractive than the Emira, at least for now.

A sports coupe comparable to two-seater Porsches, the Emira is powered by a powerful V6. But it is slow to reach the Canadian market. “We’ve been accumulating deposits (for this model) for two years,” he told us. I have around 120, while I currently only have around fifteen deposits with Eletra. »

The reputation of the electric utility vehicle remains to be built. After all, Lotus never offered 4-doors, let alone 5-doors! “But the performances are really there. With 905 hp, when you step on the gas pedal, the Eletre R will not stay in the same place for long,” adds Mr. Durand with a smile on his face.

“The performance is really there. With 905 hp, when you step on the gas pedal, the Eletre R does not stay in the same place for long. » — Bernard Durand, John Scotti Automotive

Three variants of the Eletre appear in the catalog: the basic version, the medium version S and the R, which is the richest. All have four-wheel drive and two electric motors powered by a 112 kWh battery. For the two cheapest versions, however, the buyer will have to settle for pure power… 600 horsepower. In return, the range should reach 600 km (according to the European WLTP calculation formula). With its 905 hp, the R version will offer a higher top speed (265 km/h instead of 258) and faster acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h (2.95 s instead of 4.5). On the other hand, its autonomy will be around 490 km.

Prices will range between $150,000 and just over $200,000 for the R version with tax, Mr. Durand estimates. Because Canadian pricing hasn’t been released yet. However, he expects the biggest interest among buyers to be the Eletre R. “When you choose Lotus and you know the brand, performance is very important,” he says.

The upcoming opening of Lotus Montreal in Vaudreuil

John Scotti Automotive has to move its dealership as a product line promises to diversify. Lotus Montreal will therefore soon find itself in an impressive building located at 25 boulevard de la Cité-des-Jeunes, in Vaudreuil-Dorion, along route 40. An area where there are already several dealerships, notably Vaudreuil Volkswagencompany next to this building.

Illustration of the future Lotus Montreal dealership in Vaudreuil-Dorion.

“The work that will transform the building should take six to eight months. There will be a showroom and a repair shop, where a team of technicians trained by the manufacturer will work,” explains Mr. Durand, who will manage this dealership.

Due to the generous dimensions of this building, the Lotus dealership will share it with another showroom dedicated to classic and vintage, used sports, luxury and prestige cars, two specialties of John Scotti Automotive.

Other divisions of the company will also use this building: John Scotti Commercial Trucks; division, currently located in Anjou, along Metropolitan Boulevard East. In short, John Scotti’s company will soon only have its Mitsubishi dealership located on Jarry Street East in East Montreal.

Photo: Luc Gagné and John Scotti Automotive

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