Behind its ugly mug, Lotus’ Evora 400 packs serious performance

After a one-year hiatus, Lotus will introduce an updated 2016-model-year version of the Evora at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show.

As the company originally promised, the new Evora 400 is improved in many ways, and should come with the safety upgrades required for Lotus to continue selling the car in the U.S.

Those improvements don’t include the styling, though. The new front fascia features bigger air intakes and LED daytime running lights, but it looks like part of a cheap aftermarket body kit.

The rest of the car looks pretty good, though. It still uses a Toyota-based 3.5-liter supercharged V6, but the Evora 400 has – you guessed it – 400 horsepower. That’s 55 more than the current Evora S, plus 302 pound-feet of torque.

The mid-mounted engine drives the rear wheels, and is offered with either six-speed manual or automatic transmissions just like in the current Evora.

Honoring founder Colin Chapman and his maxim about “adding lightness,” Lotus managed to trim 50 pounds from the already-lightweight Evora.

All of that allows for a 0 to 60 mph time of 4.1 seconds and a top speed of 186 mph, according to Lotus. The company also says the Evora 400 will lap its test track an impressive six seconds faster than its predecessor.

Other notable additions include a new limited-slip differential, brakes, and aero kit, as well as tweaks to the suspension, transmission, and control electronics.

On the inside, Lotus says new door panels help improve ingress and egress, and the dashboard layout has been revised as well.

The Evora 400 will launch in Europe in August, followed by North America sometime in the fall. Pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date.

While Lotus appears to have withered in recent years, it hopes to regain lost market share with the Evora 400.

The company plans to boost production of all models at its Hethel, England, factory to 70 cars per week, and grow its global dealer network from 168 stores to 200 by the end of the year.

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