I'm back, but different....

TomE

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As some of you noticed, I stopped posting on here about 3 weeks ago. A couple of observant folks saw I came back to lurk and a few people sent private messages. It was funny seeing some of the speculation on the "Three cheers..." thread. Thanks for your messages and kind thoughts.

First off, I needed to take a break from some of the stuff going on here and elsewhere online. After Phil posted the pictures from his visit to the factory with Matt, I realised things had (from my point of view at least) got out of hand. The poor Lotus comms and inconsistent info meant every leaked picture, rumour and snippet of half news was generating a wave of speculation and often perpetuating stuff that was just wrong. Trying to be helpful and explain or correct stuff meant I often ended up caught in the crossfire. Sometimes I got wrong info from my own sources, which then undermined my attempts to help. I was also spending way too much time reading and posting, often on the same points across multiple channels. I was also concerned my involvement was inadvertently fuelling the debates.

So I needed a reset.

With the weather improving I also decided to scratch a long-held itch, add another keeper to the fleet to enjoy while I wait for my Emira to arrive in June, and take some time off to do some driving:

12C Spider.jpg


A couple of other things have been keeping me busy. I think many of you know I was involved with the Emira launch at Hethel last July. Due to Covid restrictions the group of 131 superfans had to join that via video rather than be on site - the upside was we didn't get drenched like the people who were there! I got special access to the show car on the first day of Goodwood to make up for it. Well, I was honoured to be asked to join the superfans again for the Eletre launch.

This also involved some "secret squirrel" stuff to help with preparation and rehearsals. Someone very sharp-eyed spotted the Hethel Yellow Emira used at the launch was the same spec as mine. Funny that, eh? ;) We had fun doing the setups and dummy runs for camera angles. No registration plates on the car, so we couldn't take it on the road or get much above walking pace. But the noise! You might have spotted Scott Walker driving the white Esprit. I wonder who drove the Emira?

BBC TVC HY Emira 2.png


The launch event was really impressive. So many participants, lots of rehearsal, very slick and high production values. Not all of it was everyone's cup of tea (interpretive dance, anyone?) but a huge splash and a statement about New Lotus. I'm not sure if it was apparent to people watching online but there were actually two events running in parallel. The whole thing was also being broadcast simultaneously in Chinese, hosted by presenter Fenfen Huang:

Eletre launch 20.jpg


I'll write some more thoughts on the car on the other threads (it's big!), but here are a few pics ... and of course of that Emira:

Eletre launch 04.jpg


Eletre launch 15.jpg


Lotus Eletre launch 17.jpeg


Eletre launch 10.jpg


Eletre launch 14.jpg


Eletre launch 01.jpg


BBC TVC HY Emira 1.jpg


The second project I've been working on has been following on from the Hethel visits we did to feed back about comms and customer care. I finally got to meet some of the people now charged with improving the customer experience. Equally importantly, Lotus have decided to pursue more owner community involvement, including direct liaison between the factory and several of the Lotus forums through a group of reps and Lotus ambassadors.

It's great to have Lotus backing this. I don't think there will be a big launch event but individuals and forums are being brought in to the new Lotus Community Representatives and Ambassadors Programme over the coming months. This will replace the old Lotus Community Relationships And Partnering initiative. So guess who is now one of the Community Ambassadors for Emira in the UK? :)

Excited that this is going to provide more access to teams at Lotus. I'm hoping at some point fairly soon we'll get to host a live Q&A on Zoom with Gav Kershaw about suspension choices, get definitive details on the finalised production seat (it's great!) and various other insights. You never know, we might even get some actual pictures of painted cars!

More to follow...

#uslot
#ForTheCommunity

Footnote: any of you folks who like to take my write-ups and pictures and cross-post them elsewhere, could you please give due acknowledgement to me and publicise the Community Representatives and Ambassadors Programme. Better still, you could direct people to come and visit this lovely forum. Thanks!
 

VL3X

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Um... Are you telling us you are not only an OFFICIAL Lotus ambassador, but that you drove that yellow Emira!?

In all seriousness.. Good on you for taking a step away from the forums. Sounds like you've had some amazing experiences recently! Thank you for the updates and all of your previous posts as well. We all appreciate you.

Now that you're on the inside, how about getting your good buddy Alex from across the pond on that ambassador list for the States? 😁😁😁
 

NicolasB

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... And just like that, all was good again! Someone posted that it was probably your Emira on the Eletre thread 😄

Welcome back, utmost respect! And that McLaren! 🤩
 

darkling

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great to hear tom thx again for putting the excitement back in here. The lack of lotus talking about the emira and pushing out the soccer mom car w/o finalizing the emira. Kinda really set a sour taste with me .Hoping they give you the freedom to really get some numbers and real finalized cars out to see
 

CDM1855

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Good to have you back Tom

Presumably your yellow Emira is final set up

You mentioned the noise , so no messing with the exhaust too much, can it be compared to an Evora 400 ?
 
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LotusB

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Wow.... congrats and thanks for all you do for this community. I'm super jealous... do they need US Ambassadors?? No seriously, do they?

I'm sure I'm not the only one who'd be interested and I'd love to fly to Hethel and check out the factory - I'll even do so on my own dime! ;)
 

scarzie

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Wow, all great news! Thanks so much for all you've done so far, Tom, and cheers to the new role as an ambassador. Looking forward to hearing your updates yet again
 

Autopsy

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Well deserved role for what you have done for Lotus community! Hope to hear more from you very soon! Congrats from China.
 

DaaS

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Glad you’re back!
 

Johnson

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I'm glad you're on the case @TomE -- I've always had the impression that Lotus Marketing wasn't keeping pace with the growth in other divisions of the company. A number of times I've advised my dealer of things I've discovered by sifting through stuff online.

I'm pretty happy with the way things are, with one exception: why can't marketing take a few good photos of the different coloured cars on the production line? It seems like such a simple ask, and would assuage my own concerns that I've selected the right red to go with my complexion. A little baffling!
 

DJS

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Tom I new that was you driving the yellow Emira by the way you parked it…. Lol

Let’s just say you were nervous and excited 😂

#TomE is back
 

NickR

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Only one question from me Tom , how big a smile did it put on your face when you saw, sat and felt your Emira - did it feel a quality product?
I had to speak to CS yesterday. They still aren't manufacturing customers cars. These are final versions possibly to be used for test drives.
 

Bradw

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Tom congratulations. Pleased for you and excellent on behalf of Lotus for understanding that working with people like yourself is a good communication and PR move.
 

Leonard

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Great news, I really hope this is the start of New Lotus embracing community and having a clear and transparent relationship with their customer base/fans. Past, present and future 🏆 ✌️ 💪
 

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