Top Gear drives the Lotus Exige S
The Clermont-Ferrand GP circuit was famous for its gut-wrenching corners. Can the new Lotus Exige S take the strain?
Posted: 20 Jun 2012
But after a few hundred yards, you ignore the gravel. The Exige eats it up and spews it out - its 345bhp supercharged V6 summons a sort of earthy strength, powering through each gear and devouring the next one without pausing for breath. And despite being supercharged, its reactions feel like something naturally aspirated, with zero lag and a properly urgent throttle. The relentless acceleration carries on all the way up to 120mph, where the aero - especially that rear wing - start to drag it back a little. Until that point, there's something atomic about the way it delivers speed, like it's been fired from some particle accelerator... a white neutrino that could stick to the tail of a Ferrari 458. All this is accompanied by a deep industrial sound, with a hint of race-car howl from the exhaust. It doesn't sound quite as thrilling as a more exotic supercar, but this thing's more about mechanical purpose than noisy exhibitionism.