Lotus Elise 111R | Part Four

Lotus Elise 111R

Lotus Elise

Ride and handling that sets the benchmark

The aluminium chassis allows vehicle dynamics engineers at Lotus to continue to set standards by which all other sportscars are judged. Indeed, the Elise continues to build on the multi-award winning ride and handling for which it has become renowned the world over.

Lotus has taken a no-compromise approach in carrying over these philosophies to the Elise 111R. The development team has succeeded in creating a car that leaves the driver craving more time in the cockpit and more road on which to enjoy the thrill and engagement of each journey.

Run in parallel to Lotus’ USA (Federal) Elise programme, the 111R faced a gruelling development programme exceeding 800,000 km throughout 2003 that took the car across Europe and the USA. This has resulted in an exciting and progressive ride and handling package that integrates the constituents that make up the dynamics characteristics, tuning them to work in harmony with each other, the driver and the road.

For the Elise 111R, the Eibach coaxial coil springs and Bilstein high pressure monotube gas dampers have been retuned and optimised to maintain the Elise’s trademark agility, body control and poise while improving the isolation of both smaller and larger impacts.

The unique Bridgestone Potenza RE040 tyres (175/55R16 front and 225/45R17 rear) have been carried over from the Lotus Elise and the Elise 111S. The Lotus Ride and Handling team have maximised the ability to hone the chassis and tyre characteristics to ensure that this latest and highest performing version of the Elise holds true to Lotus’ values of peerless ride and handling and pure driving fun.

An ABS system like no other

The servo-assisted four-channel system individually monitors and distributes braking force to each wheel as required, enhancing braking performance and minimising stopping distance.

However, Lotus has specifically tuned the initiation point to allow a skilled driver to maximise the potential of the braking system through the utilisation of forward weight transfer. In the event of the driver demanding more braking performance than is possible, only then does the system intervene to optimise the force generated at the wheel.

continues... | Part Five
Published 23 October 2004 Melanie Carter

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