Lotus Preparing Evora Roadster, Next-Gen Elise

Lotus will bring to market a roofless version of its Evora sometime this year and has plans to introduce a next-generation Elise by the 2020 model year.

Thanks to the Evora’s super stiff architecture, the open top Evora, which is to be dubbed the Evora Roadster, won’t be any heavier than the standard version of the mid-engine sportscar.

“An Evora Roadster – we will do that,” Lotus boss Jean-Marc Gales revealed to the United Kingdom’s Car Magazine late last year. “It is so solid structurally. An open version will not add weight. The engineers have a clear target – don’t add weight.”

Gales is leaving it up to us to decipher what the Evora Roadster might look like, but the 54-year old did say his company’s designers were required to do “a bit more than just opening the roof.”

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Elsewhere within Lotus engineers are hard at work developing the all-new Elise. Unlike the current model, the new car will be designed from the ground-up to meet U.S. safety regulations and specifications. Gales also confirmed the car will be instantly recognizable as a vehicle produced by the Norwhich-based carmaker.

Finally, Lotus said it is considering a less hardcore version of the 3-Eleven called the 4-Eleven. The 3-Eleven is essentially an Exige S that lacks a roof and proper windscreen and produces 450 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque from the same supercharged 3.5-liter V6 engine. If it does go through with the plans, expect the 3-Eleven to arrive late this year.

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