2020 Lotus Evora GT first drive review: A reminder to drive

2020 lotus evora gt first drive review a reminder to

cars like 2020 Lotus Evora GT existence is needed. A refreshing tactile experience in an increasingly sterile world, the Evora eschews driver assistance technologies and robust infotainment wizardry in favor of a highly engaging relationship between car and driver. Whether it’s a track day of the weekend or cheering on a great canyon road, Evora kindly requests that you shut up and drive.

Right from the start, the GT is a car that needs extra attention. Starting the Evora is the same complicated process as before: Use the fob to unlock the car, turn the key in the ignition on the right side of the steering column, and then press the engine start button on the left side of the dashboard. Do it quickly too — you only have 30 seconds to start the engine, or you’ll have to hit the unlock button and start all over again. This is a fine introduction to such a simple car. But I admit, I like it.

The V6 engine roars to life with an uncharacteristically throaty juicer. That’s especially true when you consider this V6—a 3.5-liter, Toyota-sourced bale—is a heavily massed version of the motor that powers the old Camrys and sienas. With a water-to-air charge cooler and an Edelbrock supercharger, the formerly Milkytoast V6 produces 416 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque when paired with the Evora GT’s standard six-speed manual transmission. Opt for a six-speed automatic and you get an extra 15 pound-feet of twist, but, well, it’s not worth it. More on that in a minute.

The Evora’s heavy and pleasantly mechanical-feeling clutch pedal is a pleasure to work with, which is perfectly complemented by the crisp throws of the six-speed manual gearbox. Launch the GT hard in first gear and slam it hard into second gear just before the 7,000-rpm redline; Lotus estimates an acceleration time of 0 to 60 mph at 3.8 seconds, which in action seems extremely conservative.

Although the supercharger provides less than enough spur over the engine’s rev range, you’d better hum the V6 above 3,500 RPM. The close-spaced pedals mean that heel and toe can be executed without much thought, and the Evora is happy to run at full boil at all times. Keep it up, and you’ll be rewarded with instant power delivery accompanied by a melodious sound. The engine is placed behind the passenger compartment, remember – you’d better listen, my dear.

Now, about the automatic transmission: I know this makes the Evora GT accessible to a wider range of drivers, but unless you can physically operate the stick-shift setup, please drive your car like this Do not specify from. A modern example of the term “slushbox”, the six-speed automatic is sluggish when left to its own device. And though I prefer the look and feel of the large, aluminum paddle shifters, their responsiveness to input in manual mode still leaves a lot to be desired. Don’t forget, like the engine, this gearbox was intended venjasi.

Drew Phillips/Lotus

Regardless of the transmission, the Evora’s steering is great stuff. The rack uses hydraulic assist instead of a modern, electrified setup, and that means a lot more communication than you’ll find in any other car today. The wheel itself is made of magnesium, which gives it a sort of “hum” reaction. The weight adds up as you lean forward, and Evora’s reflexes are almost telepathic in sync with your input.

Evora GT likes to drive with hard work and conviction. The lightweight chassis is incredibly forgiving, and you quickly realize that the GT can handle a lot more than you’d like to give on public roads. Eibach springs are fitted to Bilstein dampers, and regardless of the drive setting – Normal, Sport or Race – their tune remains the same. Instead, these drive modes alter throttle response and traction control intervention, and a fourth “off” setting removes any electronic assistance. “This Mercedes is not closed,” notes a Lotus representative. “this is Real ‘Close.'”

Additional credit for the GT’s wealth of traction goes to the super-grippy Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, which are some of the best rubbers available this side of the “family planning” aisle of my supermarket. The forged aluminum, 19-inch front wheels come covered in 245/35-series tires, while the 20-inch rear is wrapped in 295/30’s fat. Behind them, AP Racing four-piston calipers are clamped to two-piece, ventilated brake discs, and there’s enough stopping power under your right foot with no harsh initial bite.

The size and shape of the GT hasn’t changed from Evora 400 predecessor, and it strikes a pretty silhouette on the road. A new front splitter and restyled rear diffuser improve airflow, resulting in twice the downforce compared to the 400, but otherwise, the GT remains basically the same. The chassis is still largely made of aluminum, with many body panels constructed from carbon fiber. Optional lightweight package and its front bumper, roof, tailgate (with louvre!) and diffuser are made from carbon fiber. At its lightest, the GT tips the scales at about 2,800 pounds, or about 70 pounds less than the Evora 400.

Drew Phillips/Lotus

“When you buy a Lotus, we expect you to drive it hard,” says a company representative. But even though the Evora GT is first and foremost a performer, things are no different if you are stuck in traffic on a congested stretch of highway. The suspension isn’t stiff enough to turn a morning commute into a chiropractic workout, and the Evora isn’t stiffer than one around town Porsche Cayman. this is the car i wish for alfa romeo 4c It is possible.

In fact, the Evora is almost shockingly comfortable and easy to live with. Sure, it’s a downer, but you don’t have to reverse your body to get in or out. The supportive sport bucket has four-way manual adjustment, and while Lotus will outfit your Evora GT with a pair of rear seats—yes, in a mid-engine car—I’m forced to use any bad sap Sorry to be.

The rest of the interior is a pretty straightforward affair, with only a few buttons for vehicle controls along with the dash. It’s hard to notice the aging, parts-bin switchgear—you know, like the turn signals and wiper stalks from an early-2000s Ford Focus or the headlight controls from a mid-2000s General Motors car. Cool as the louvers are of carbon fiber tailgates, they make rear visibility almost non-existent. And while the 7-inch multimedia screen supports Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto, this is an aftermarket Alpine head unit not unlike the one available at your local Best Buy.

Drew Phillips/Lotus

I’ll admit, the Evora GT’s few shortcomings are hard to justify when you consider its $96,950 starting price—or $131,795 in the case of my test car, of which $8,100 is the cost of the cyan blue paint. Evora GT costs like brand new 2020 Cayman GT4 With multiple option boxes, and while it’s every bit (probably more) exciting to drive, the Porsche is arguably the more complete, well-rounded package.

But no one buys a Lotus expecting a luxurious, feature-rich machine. You buy lotus to lock doors, and because nothing else gives you the same experience.

The 2020 Evora GT isn’t the car for everyone, and that’s exactly the point. I don’t care for the hilarious old switchgear. I don’t care where the powertrain comes from. The Evora GT is a great, no-frills sports car from a company that only knows how to make great, no-frills sports cars. It is analog and sentimental. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Drew Phillips/Lotus

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