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The philosophies of Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman, the Englishman who started Lotus Cars in 1952, are what make the cars great. Chapman started the Lotus Engineering Company with a £50 loan from “Lotus Blossom”, his then girlfriend—later to be his wife—Hazel Williams.
Thus was the company so-named.
Like so many automotive entrepreneurs Chapman’s love of racing guided his engineering efforts. Noted for producing lightweight cars with exceptional handling, Chapman is quoted as having said, "Adding power makes you faster on the straights. Subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere".
As proof of concept, his cars won—a lot.
The success of Lotus racing cars quite naturally enhanced the appeal of the road cars. Iconic Lotus models include the 1957 Lotus Elite, the first road car to use a fiberglass monocoque. The 1962 Lotus Elan is noted for being the first Lotus road car to use a steel backbone chassis with a fiberglass body. Innovations such as these enabled Chapman to extract outstanding performance from relatively small engines. Perhaps the Lotus automobile that most captured mainstream attention was the mid-engine exotic 1976 Lotus Esprit. Indelibly inscribed in the annals of popular culture as the “submarine car” from the James Bond movies.
A team of highly experienced automotive professionals—people who drive every new car each year—produces the Lotus reviews you’ll find here on the Autobytel Website. When it comes to making informed purchase decisions, our Lotus reviews give you a comprehensive overview of every aspect of these automobiles including styling, powertrains, safety features, interior treatments and driving impressions.