Lotus Elise sports car reviews


"it's an exquisite dynamic delight
that makes the act of driving
in a committed fashion into
an unmitigated pleasure" 

                                                          Car Enthusiast, 2017

EVO MAGAZINE CAR OF THE YEAR - BEST SPORTS CAR ‘Twenty-one years on and no one has matched the Elise in terms of undiluted driving enjoyment,’ says Gallagher. ‘It feels as refreshingly brilliant as it did when we first drove it, only now every area has been improved upon.’ Time spent in this car has been a tonic. A glorious relief from a life that these days is spent writing endlessly about SUVs and listening to nonsense spoken about self-driving cars.

The Lotus Elise Sport 220 shows not only how it used to be done, but how it should still be done.




CAR ADVICE “… the car itself is actually very usable as a daily. It presents a nicer ride than some actual everyday cars. Weighing so little and having the engineering might of Lotus behind it, I’ve found the Elise to be super comfortable….the Elise is as described – extremely nimble and highly engaging to drive. Its lack of driver aids in terms of even power steering makes every journey an adventure if you enjoy driving…."


THE REDLINE "The adrenaline you get from driving this car all day.... hahahaha...utterly tremendous...as far as the experience goes this feels fantastic..."


TOP GEAR'S GREATEST CARS - SPORTS CARS "...so much communication you wonder why every car company on the planet doesn’t have one of these things knocking around for benchmarking.....Does anyone care about steering feel any more? Sounds nerdy, I know, but if our combustion engines and their associated noises and transmissions aren’t all that long for this world, the other sensations a car can tingle its driver with are about to get a whole lot more important…"


EXHAUST NOTES "The ride and handling is exceptional, it’s like driving a race car, and its light weight and power to weight ratio make it a simple joy to drive. Add some moisture to the road and it will take weeks to wipe the smile off your face."



MOTORING.COM.AU "...it leaves a raw, viscerally endearing impression that few road cars – some wearing much more storied badges on the snout – can beat. And it does so for under $100K.."


TOP GEAR "No car for the money gives you less car. But no car for the money gives you more sensation."


PRACTICAL MOTORING "The Elise is uniquely placed. No other useable road car at this price offers such intense driving experience. Once tried never forgotten. It really is in a different league from even the Porsche Boxster or Toyota GT86."

CAR ENTHUSIAST "...you could just about live with an Elise as your only car on a day-to-day basis if your circumstances were right and, as a result, there's nothing that so finely blends stunning driving dynamics like this - that work both on track and the public roads - with a reasonable veneer of usability. Brilliant as it is, a Porsche 718 Boxster S just isn't as ultimately engaging as the Elise"


CAR "Lotus has constantly refined and improved the product during the course of two decades to leave us with a sports car that is still without equal in the clarity of feedback it offers...a sensational driver’s car...."


AUTOCAR "what else, at either price, offers this level of pure driving pleasure as well as enough practicality for hardy types to use for all seasons and reasons. The answer is the same as it’s been these past 21 years: none. Then, as now, the Elise is a unique proposition whose charm has barely diminished over the years

TOP GEAR "In a world where cars are more and more divorced from both driver and road, the lightweight Elise is a sports car that still delivers the best seat-of-the-pants feel this side of a Caterham."


AUTOCAR "The tactile pleasure begins from the moment its wheels revolve, the steering taking instant effect, its sensitivity just so, the Lotus turning with total obedience. Add lock and the lightness turns to heft as the castor and trail angle take effect, providing enough resistance that you sometimes have to put some muscle into turning the wheel, a sensation almost alien to drivers of modern power-assisted cars."


Richard Rackham: the Elise’s chief engineer "....The original brief for the Elise was simple: to be a modern successor to the Lotus Seven...." "...‘What you have to remember is the Elise was all about creating a race car experience for the road.....They’re noisy as hell, but it is supposed to feel like a racing car...."

EVO - Porsche Boxster vs Lotus Elise S "...The Lotus thrives on commitment and raw speed, so you tend to find yourself going like the clappers for 20 minutes before easing off to catch your breath....raw thrills, pace, involvement and excitement so readily served up by the Lotus. If you’re after an adrenalin pump, the Elise S stands head and shoulders above the Porsche..."


SEE WHAT'S NEW --> MY17 Elise range updates

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MORE INFO --> See pricing & specs on the range

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