Lotus gets a lot of stick for ‘building its cars in a field in Norfolk’, but that’s never stopped it producing some of the most iconic – and best handling – sports cars of all time. Esprit. Elise. Evora. It’s quite the CV. And now, the jokes may stop once and for all. Because this is Hethel, Norfolk’s latest tool in the supercar arms race. Welcome to the factory where the 1,972bhp Evija electric hypercar will be built.
The new production hall has been built slap-bang alongside the Hethel test track – rather convenient – where Lotus sets up its world-class chassis, and the likes of Ayrton Senna, Emerson Fittipaldi and Jim Clark have tested F1 cars.
This skunkworks has been quietly coming together since summer 2019, complete with an overhead crane for lugging around heavy-duty components (like a 2,000kW battery) various car lifts and a wheel-alignment station.
After each of the 130 Evijas is built, it’ll be driven straight out of the factory doors and onto the test track for a shakedown. So, best be double-checking those bolts are done up tight, boys and girls. Oh, and it’ll powerslide. Silently.
Phil Popham, CEO, Lotus Cars, commented: “This is now the newest car production facility in the world, and to witness it move from the drawing board to reality has been deeply satisfying. It’s testament to the commitment of all involved, and is the perfect sleek and high-tech production home for the Evija at our iconic Hethel headquarters.”
So, no more cheap shots about Norfolk, right? It might not be as glamorous-sounding as Fiorano or Sant’Agata, but it’s coming out fighting.
For the full brain download on the Lotus Evija and its crazy numbers, check out TopGear’s complete factfile here…