PETALING JAYA: DRB-Hicom cemented its commitment to the Lotus brand with a flagship showroom that was opened today in Sungai Penchala, Kuala Lumpur.
The latest Exige S and Elise S were launched in conjunction with the official opening of the showroom by Proton advisor Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
This is the first Lotus showroom in Malaysia, occupying 10,520 sq m of land and offers a complete Lotus experience with a showroom, a customer interactive block and a service/parts centre that can cater for up to eight cars at a time.
The showroom spans 1,060 sq m and comprises sales areas for new and pre-owned Lotus cars.
Proton deputy chief executive officer Datuk Lukman Ibrahim said there were plans to set up 3S service centres in Penang and Johor Baru within the next two years and expanding the Lotus support network to Sabah and Sarawak was a possibility after that.
Both the Exige S and Elise S use Toyota-sourced engines that have been adapted to Lotus requirements.
The Exige S has a mid-mounted transverse 3.5l V6 engine fitted with a Harrop HTV 132- supercharger that gives the car a top speed of 274kph. It has peak torque of 400Nm at 4,500rpm and 345hp at 7,000rpm.
On the other hand, the lighter Elise S uses a 1.8l inline 4-cylinder engine with Magnuson R900 supercharger in the same engine layout, conferring upon it a top speed of 234kph. It has peak power of 217hp at 6,800rpm and 250Nm of torque at 4,600rpm.
|Here's how the Exige S and Elise S Coupe (below) cabins look like. The Exige S uses a conventional key to start the engine while the Elise S uses a start/stop button as seen just below the right-most air-cond vent.|
Both models use a 6-speed manual gearbox with sports ratios
The Exige S is longer and wider than the Elise S and is available in two bodystyles - a RM452,030 Roadster version and the RM462,230 Coupe version. The new Elise S Coupe is priced from RM332,300.
The prices are inclusive of three year or 100,000km manufacturer's warranty, whichever comes first.
Typical of Lotus sports cars are the high sills and low bucket seats that make getting in easier than getting out.
The interior of both models are relatively spartan, another Lotus trademark, but Lotus officials said the interior is actually an improvement over the predecessors'.
The Exige S is offered with a choice of two tyres: the all-weather Pirelli Zero Corse or P Zero Trofeo meant for track use with lower wet performance than the Zero Corse.
Proton is majority-controlled by DRB-Hicom Bhd after the latter acquired a 42.74 per cent stake from government investment arm, Khazanah Nasional Bhd.
DRB-Hicom is a heavyweight automotive player with considerable experience of 28 years.
As the only player in Malaysia with a fully-integrated automotive business, encompassing component manufacturing, import and assembly of vehicles to distribution and after-sales activities, DRB-Hicom is in a position to re-shape Proton and its Lotus division so as to enhance quality, cut costs and drive up profits.
|The Elise S.|