Lotus Exige track car builds in Australia
The Lotus Exige V6 sports car is an incredible vehicle to use for track days. The Simply Sports Cars Dealerships in Sydney or Melbourne can help owners upgrade their standard road going V6 Exige sports cars with various track-ready parts and modifications. This can be as simple as a Schroth racing harness to be more comfortable in the car on track or things like better brake pads that can withstand higher temperatures from agressive use.
Simply Sports Cars though is not like a lot of other car dealerships who might bolt on a few bits and pieces. Our team includes motorsport engineers and a mechanic team with loads of competitive motorsport and track day experience.
This means we can take things to another level when it comes to track day car builds and help with modifications or parts that we have helped design & develop in-house using the pracical lessons we have learnt at the track racing Lotus sports cars in Australia.
Engine supercharger upgrades, suspension replacement, roll cages all the way through to complete race car builds. We are able to customise a solution to suit each client’s specific needs. Then, rather than leaving you to your own devices, we’ll then be at the race track to make sure you are getting the maximum out of your new build.
Is the Exige V6 a good track car?
- An Exige sports car that weighs less than 1,200 kgs
- A Series 3 Exige has up to 430 horsepower or 321kW
- There is up to 440Nm of torque available from around 4,000 rpm
Just consider those raw specifications for a second. That is about 200-300 kgs lighter with similar or more power than a BMW M2 coupe or Porsche Cayman. This performance is packed into a chassis that has double wishbone suspension front and rear, the same type of track orientated set up that formula race cars use.
This type of package makes the V6 one of the most potent track cars you can buy in Australia with raw performance that very few, if any, cars could match when it comes to doing regular track days and keeping your running costs under control.
What many people don’t stop to think about is the combination of weight, suspension set up & ease of modifications they can make to their track car when they buy it. We see lots of owners of Ford Mustangs, Mercedes Benz C63’s, Porsche Caymans or BMW M2’s who take their cars to the track but have to spend a fortune on brake pads, brake discs, wheel hubs and other parts of their cars that have to take abuse from a 1,400kg+ weight being pushed around the circuit.
Some other aspects that people may not consider is the seating position and steering. While many do complain about how hard it is to get in and out of an Exige, once you are in the drivers seat you quickly realise how perfect it is for a driving enthusiast. You sit with your bum only a few inches above the road and your legs out in front of you – just like a racing car.
Added to that is the fact that Exige does not have power steering. So unlike other manufactures of sports cars who have electric or hydraulic steering systems, the Exige is direct, precise & you feel every little bump through your fingertips. Combined with the seating position and light weight it is as close as you can get to having a race car.
Why did Phil choose an Exige V6 for a track day car?
Phil had a Subaru WRX race car that had great performance and was very focussed for track day use. It had to be put on a trailer to be used for track days and had very high levels of maintenance plus it couldn’t be driven on the road.
One of his friends had bought a modified Lotus Elise and Phil was impressed with the lap times a production based sports car could deliver on the track. Convinced of the benefits of using a Lotus, he began researching whether the Exige V6 was a good track day car and he eventually bought a stock Exige Sport 350 Supercharged V6 Hethel Edition.
The Exige provides a good platform to work on for a track day car build. Of course the layout of an Exige is very similar to an open wheeler with its mid engine, rear wheel drive set up.
What is this Exige V6 getting used for?
Since Phil bought his Exige V6 he has been mainly using it for track days. A the last Lotus track day at Wakefield Raceway he had set himself a target of a 1.07 min lap time of the circuit with the standard vehicle.
This would form the basis for deciding whether to upgrade his Exige or leave it as is. Although he eventually decided he would invest the money to upgrade the V6’s engine performance, upgrade the suspension and add other car modifications that would make it more suitable for regular track day use.
What is being upgraded on this Exige build?
- Built’ motor with strengthened internals
- TVS1900, charge cooled supercharger upgrade kit
- Nitron 3 way adjustable suspension front and rear
- Quaife Limited Slip Differential
- Baffled sump
- Motech engine management system
- AIM Dashboard
- Upgraded exhaust, manifold & headers
The work we are doing to upgrade this Exige V6 sports car is focussed around creating a track day vehicle that is reliable enough to be driven daily while having the performance punch to do a full day on a circuit. This mix of modifications will give the Exige additional horsepower with complimentary items like the charge cooler & baffled sump aiding reliability.
We always work closely with owners to make sure any power upgrades are supported with the right balance of suspension or brake modifications. Phil also chose to have Nitron 3 way adjustable dampers with fitted springs installed front and rear. These are designed to run inverted for reduced unsprung mass and provide a range of adjustments to ensure the car will be suited to various track conditions or surfaces. Together with the limited slip differential it will help maximise traction and cornering performance.
Everything will be managed by a Motech engine management system and the new Lotus AIM Dashboard. The new AIM Lotus Sports Car Project Department has been working in collaboration with AiM Technologies to develop a Lotus Approved Digital Dashboard for Lotus Elise and V6 Exige models. You can use it for normal driving or at the track with the inbuilt GPS and large track database, lap and performance information can be viewed & recorded data downloaded. Switching the vehicle on near a track, the module will automatically recognize the venue and start to download the start/finish coordinates and calculates lap times when these coordinates are crossed.
LIMITED SLIP DIFFERENTIAL
– The engine has returned to be rebuilt & while this is being done Richie is putting together the Quaife Limited Slip Differential. Watch the video below to learn about the benefits of an LSD. A limited slip differential can allow a driver to put down as much power as possible without breaking traction. In a straight line there isn’t much benefit, but where it comes into it’s own is when you can corner a lot faster where there is less loss of grip as the left and right wheels grip the surface. It also means less wear on tires from loss of traction. It becomes a distinct advantage when combined with the Lotus ‘Sport’ or ‘Race’ driving modes available on the Exige.
– The other benefit of using a Quaife LSD is that it is a sealed unit that reduces the need for regular maintenance vs other solutions or the factory differential.
– We are in the early stages of this build with the engine removed to have start the cylinder and piston work. While the V6 is being worked on Steve has stripped the stock suspension to being the install of the Nitron 3 ways.
GEAR SHIFT SLIP PADS
– We designed upgraded gear shift slip pads that are made of brass instead of plastic. It ensures there is a reliable and smooth gearshift action and a recommended upgrade for regular track day or targa rally driving.
STRONGER ENGINE INTERNALS
– To compliment the extra power and expected performance demands on the engine it is wise to also look at improving the strength of various engine interal components. This can ensure reliable running.
How far can we go with track day car builds?
Simply Sports Cars has extensive experience with track day car or race car builds in Australia. You can consult directly with our team of race engineers to build a spec that suits your applications.
Our team can also provide ongoing support with trackside assistance, driver training, suspension set up and even data analysis.