The first Lotus SUV will be all-electric and arrive in 2022, Lotus has confirmed. The company says it will be an E-segment SUV (executive SUV) and suggests a coupe version will follow in 2023. Internally, the first Lotus SUV goes by ‘Lotus Type 132,’ and the first Lotus SUV-coupe ‘Lotus Type 133.’ Teasers show slim L-shaped headlamps as a common design feature.
The Lotus Type 132 will compete with the Tesla Model X, BMW iX, and Mercedes EQE SUV. Given that Lotus is a performance brand, the main targets should be potential Model X Plaid, EQE-AMG, and the iX M60 customers. A report from autocar.co.uk has shared some details about this car.
Strict weight targets
The Lotus electric SUV would have the lightest body in its class, Peter Horbury, the Executive Vice President of Design at Geely Auto Group, had suggested in 2017. Geely Auto Group, a Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Company, holds a majority stake in Lotus since 2017. To achieve the exceptionally low weight targets, Lotus is putting extra effort into material usage. The Tesla Model X Performance weighs 5,741 lbs. or 2.6 tonnes (2,604 kg), and the Chinese-owned British brand could be targeting a figure closer to 4,409 lbs. or 2 tonnes.
Lotus says that its EVs will be based on a new ‘Premium Architecture’ that was announced in April 2021. The company says that Premium Architecture supports EVs from C+ to E segments, with models having a wheelbase of 2,889 and 3,100 mm.
Variants & Performance
Lotus EVs will be capable of accelerating from 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) in under three seconds. They will come with 92-120 kWh battery packs operating at 800 volts. So, the future models will offer long-range and ultra-fast-charging.
According to the Autocar report, Lotus plans to offer its first electric SUV in two variants. The base variant would have two electric motors generating close to 600 hp. The top-end variant’s motors would produce up to 750 hp, and their torque output would also be higher. Lotus is targeting a range of 360 miles.
Production of the Lotus electric SUV will take place at a new factory in Wuhan. Lotus will unveil its electric SUV in 2022 and put it on sale in 2023. Thanks to Chinese production and sourcing, prices should be more attractive than that of global rivals. Lotus is locating its new global headquarters in Wuhan and held a breaking-ground ceremony in August 2021. It plans to begin operations in 2024. The company plans to open the new factory later this year.
With three SUV models in the pipeline, all in segments with specifications that would strike the chord with American car buyers, the timing looks right for Lotus to enter the U.S. market. Only time will tell if that happens, though.
Peter Horbury joins Group Lotus
Peter Horbury, Vice President of Design, Geely, has joined Group Lotus as its Senior Vice President of Design. At Geely, Horbury oversaw the development of two brands: Geely Auto and Lynk & Co. Prior to that, he was Volvo Cars’ design chief and turned the Swedish brand’s boxy cars into sleek and desirable models. At Group Lotus, the veteran designer will likely shape all-electric Lotus models, including the Lotus SUVs, in the years to come.
Lotus SUV FAQs
What is the Lotus electric SUV release date?
Lotus will unveil its electric SUV (Lotus Type 132) in 2022 and put it on sale in 2023.
Will Lotus launch its electric SUV in the U.S.?
Lotus has not announced its U.S. entry yet, but it is too big a market for EVs for the company not to consider.
What will be the Lotus electric SUV range?
The Lotus electric SUV will likely go up to 360 miles on a full charge.
Featured Image Source: Lotus