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Good news for the leather romper suit community: Lotus has just released a fresh batch of images of the C-01, the company’s first ever motorbike. And doesn’t it look astonishing?

And before you file this under ‘Pipedream Render That’ll Never Ever Happen’, hold on. Because the C-01 is real. And will be built.

Kodewa - the outfit that builds Lotus’s Le Mans racer and is in charge of this two-wheeled project - has confirmed that a prototype is road registered and unleashing 200bhp on the streets as we speak.

The C-01 is a design from the pen of VW Group designer Daniel Simon (the genius futurist behind a lot of the Bugatti Veyron and these amazing creations) and made with bits from the Holzer Group, which specialises in making things to go inter outer space.

The C-01’s raked-out front forks, long-wheel-base design and wider rubber at the back give it the look of a drag bike. It’s also wrapped in a John Player Special carbon livery, which instantly makes anything cool. Not a fan? Don’t worry, a range of other legendary liveries that pay homage to Lotus’s heritage are also available.

Hanging between the two wheels is a 4-stroke engine, 200bhp V-Twin. That’s as much power a Renaultsport Clio, in something that weighs only 181 kg. No performance figures yet, but we’re guessing that you’ll have to hold on tight.

This isn’t the first time a manufacturer of lightweight cars has gone two-wheeled: Caterham recently announced that it wanted to leather up and get its knee down. But Lotus’s bike isn’t actually built by the guys in Norfolk that’ll knock you together an Exige S: instead, like the Lotus F1 team, the C-01 is produced under licence. Does this put us off? Not at all. Just look at it!

Unfortunately we don’t know exactly how much this two-wheeler will cost. What we do know is that only 100 units will be made - so if you do want one, you’ll have register your interest sharpish.

But the C-01 raises an important question. What other car manufacturer would you like to see having a crack at the two-wheeled world? Let us know below.

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