New Lotus Type 132 SUV revealed in patent drawings
The first ever Lotus SUV, codenamed the Type 132, will be unveiled on 29 March. But these leaked patent images from China reveal elements of the car’s design a little ahead of time.
We’ve already seen a teaser video hinting at minor design details, such as carbon inserts on the wheels, grooved brake discs, and flat-topped steering wheel. But the exterior design previewed in the patent drawings suggests that all-electric Type 132 will conform to the aggressive design of the Emira sports car and Evija hypercar.
The slim headlights, a full-width rear light bar and angular grille all suggest a sportiness to rival the likes of the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Tesla Model Y and Porsche’s new electric Macan, which will make its debut later this year.
We can also see wing mirror cameras, flush-fitting door handles, a split rear spoiler and various ducts which should all help with lowering the Type 132’s drag coefficient, making it more slippery in the air for increased range and performance.
The new model will sit on the Lotus marque’s ‘Premium Architecture’ – one of the firm’s four new platforms designed for wide-ranging electrification.
While the electric SUV might struggle to conform to Colin Chapman’s philosophy of ‘simplify, then add lightness’, there should be some impressive performance available. The Premium Architecture will have wheelbases ranging from 2,998mm to 3,100mm, and batteries 90kWh to 120kWh in capacity are being designed for use within the platform. Lotus says Premium Architecture cars will have motor systems capable of propelling the cars from 0-62mph in under three seconds.
They’ll also be electrified at 800v, like the Porsche/Audi J1 platform underneath the Taycan and e-tron GT. This should result in ultrafast 350kW charging capability.
Lotus is now speaking openly about using its Premium Architecture for “an all-new range of lifestyle vehicles” – expected to be SUVs – that will “catapult Lotus into a new era of higher retail volumes and significant revenues”.
Unlike the brand’s Hethel-built sports cars, the Lotus ‘lifestyle’ models will be built in China, at a new £900m factory in Wuhan.
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