Lotus, once a maker of gorgeous sports cars and now mainly an engineering technology company that also builds cars, has its own prototype extended-range hybrid, to show off the company's tech portfolio.
The Lotus Evora 414E runs via battery-power electric motors and is undergoing on-road testing ahead of schedule, Lotus says.
Like the Chevrolet Volt extended-range hybrid, the Lotus prototype has an internal-combustion engine charging system aboard, so you don't have to worry about the batteries running down when there's no place to plug in.
Lotus says the Evora 414E is a no-compromise high-performance machine. The maker claims 408 horsepower and a remarkable 738 pounds-feet of torque from
The electric motors. Standstill to 60 mph: 4 seconds, Lotus says, which is getting into the rocket-like arena of a fast motorcycle. Top speed is given as 130 mph.
The engine is a three-cylinder that will run on either gasoline or alcohol fuels. As in the Chevy system, it drives a generator to keep the batteries juiced, but the Lotus alsocan drive the car directly. The Volt engine drives the car directly only under a rare set of circumstances.
Lotus supplies the bodies used by electric-car maker Tesla for its battery-driven sports car.