Steve Sutcliffe review

Leonard

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I really like Sutcliffe one of my top 5 motoring journos.
I really really need to test drive this car now. I'm concerned that I have completely got the wrong end of the stick in respect to what I was ordering and I'm not sure how that happened.

The below is the opposite of what I want from my first Lotus:

"In truth, it’s a very different kind of car from the Cayman in both character and set-up. That’s because Lotus knew it would struggle to take on one of the best all-round sports cars at its own game, hence the reason it’s gone down a more refined route. And for much of the time, it works pretty well."

I thought this car was all about taking on the 718 and beating it at its own game in the dynamics department and getting as close as possible to the refinement element.
I'm so disappointed if this is not the case and Lotus are simply taking the easy option with this early launch edition car to appeal to the masses and saving all of the good stuff until later in the life cycle 😪 #forthedrivers?
 

xen

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I really like Sutcliffe one of my top 5 motoring journos.
I really really need to test drive this car now. I'm concerned that I have completely got the wrong end of the stick in respect to what I was ordering and I'm not sure how that happened.

The below is the opposite of what I want from my first Lotus:

"In truth, it’s a very different kind of car from the Cayman in both character and set-up. That’s because Lotus knew it would struggle to take on one of the best all-round sports cars at its own game, hence the reason it’s gone down a more refined route. And for much of the time, it works pretty well."

I thought this car was all about taking on the 718 and beating it at its own game in the dynamics department and getting as close as possible to the refinement element.
I'm so disappointed if this is not the case and Lotus are simply taking the easy option with this early launch edition car to appeal to the masses and saving all of the good stuff until later in the life cycle 😪 #forthedrivers?
I think you just set your expectations unrealistically based on the devout lotus fan club. The reality has always been there - the drive train and chassis underpinnings as well as the refreshed more focused version to come in the future.

Read between the lines. It is a great car but it is it’s own car. It’s also skewed a touch towards being more of a GT sports car than an outright driving thrill (simplify then add lightness will come later).

Take a breath and step back from the forums a bit. All the enthusiasm built over the past year surely can’t be squandered on the musings of a few old men. What do they know anyway…
 

emiraspain

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The first is the steering, which is no more than okay in the feedback it provides.
this does seem a stark contrast to what many others say, hence perhaps those tyres at high speeds do take away from steering feel...... OR perhaps like fine wine experts, you get to a certain point and its all much of a muchness, ie one says what the other says, but they dont really know the difference between which is best?
 

GetawayDriving

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The first is the steering, which is no more than okay in the feedback it provides.
this does seem a stark contrast to what many others say, hence perhaps those tyres at high speeds do take away from steering feel...... OR perhaps like fine wine experts, you get to a certain point and its all much of a muchness, ie one says what the other says, but they dont really know the difference between which is best?

I found this strange. We saw how much the wheel was moving in Harry's hands.

Another thing that strikes me as odd in this review is the car. They state Sport setup with Goodyears, again the combo that has produced the most criticism, but this appears to be the magma/ice car, which we know from Harry's review has touring suspension and goodyears.
 

Leonard

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I think you just set your expectations unrealistically based on the devout lotus fan club. The reality has always been there - the drive train and chassis underpinnings as well as the refreshed more focused version to come in the future.

Read between the lines. It is a great car but it is it’s own car. It’s also skewed a touch towards being more of a GT sports car than an outright driving thrill (simplify then add lightness will come later).

Take a breath and step back from the forums a bit. All the enthusiasm built over the past year surely can’t be squandered on the musings of a few old men. What do they know anyway…
Yes I definitely set my expectations too high. But I thought with Geely backing Lotus could actually pull off the impossible.
It's still an amazing achievement in the time frame, but I don't understand why it's been pitched as such a 'soft' car dynamically. I mean I know it has been designed for mass market appeal, but where has the Lotus DNA gone?
It also feels like they could have possibly improved the drive train as well if they wanted but didnt really invest that much in it because it will only be around for 18 months??
And then the whole bhp/rpm thing just baffles me. Its not a deal breaker it's plenty fast enough for the road, but why not give it that performance advantage over the competition when it's literally just a software map?
See what happens on the test drive anyway. I'm not a negative person (especially when it comes to cars) but this whole Lotus experience has indeed been a roller coaster of emotions, but ultimately deflating for me personally. Bet you never guessed that 😅 Anyway moving on until after that drive #forthetestdrivers
 

Hedge

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I found this strange. We saw how much the wheel was moving in Harry's hands.

Another thing that strikes me as odd in this review is the car. They state Sport setup with Goodyears, again the combo that has produced the most criticism, but this appears to be the magma/ice car, which we know from Harry's review has touring suspension and goodyears.

Quite unbelievable really - especially as it’s the configuration I’ve ordered on the basis of the outgoing Evora 410. Given how good the Evora is to drive, this seems to be another backward step compared to the outgoing base Evora 410 … along with being nickel and dimed on performance, rpm limit, hp.

Steve Sutcliffe is a pretty good judge. He rates it highly overall, but not in the areas I really want in sports car costing £81,000. Although it sounds like it could be a competitor (on the right suspension of course) for a used Bentley or Aston (or even a 911) for that money - if I wanted a nice looking, fast, good enough handling car that has a lot of feel-good feeling.

Sadly, nickel and dimed is how I’m feeling about this car and, what is now seeming to be a lot of tosh that’s been emanating in various forms from Hethel over the past 12 months.

For me it just had to be as good dynamically and performance as an Evora 400 from 2015 (ok better than the outgoing base model of the Evora 410 would’ve been lovely). And I’ve seen nothing that suggests it is. But maybe that is a good thing: the Evora holds its own special place in the Lotus pantheon.

So, as I write, the Emira has become a lot clearer! as some have said, expectations were wrong. They said it’s not a prettier Evora with a nice interior…

And now I realise they were right!!!

It’s #theothersportscar and not #forthedrivers!

At last, I get it now!
 

Cachaco131

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I think you just set your expectations unrealistically based on the devout lotus fan club. The reality has always been there - the drive train and chassis underpinnings as well as the refreshed more focused version to come in the future.

Read between the lines. It is a great car but it is it’s own car. It’s also skewed a touch towards being more of a GT sports car than an outright driving thrill (simplify then add lightness will come later).

Take a breath and step back from the forums a bit. All the enthusiasm built over the past year surely can’t be squandered on the musings of a few old men. What do they know anyway…
What's the likelihood of a V6 more hard core version?
 

AudR8

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Oh dear just reading that review does not fill me with confidence that this is a drivers car so has Jenson Button been spouting a load of tosh 🥴
From reading that review it doesn’t even come across as exciting to drive. Getting the feeling we’re paying £80k for just something that looks good but is a step back where they have been & from being a drivers car. Quotes:
” you could argue this is a lot of money for a car with a Toyota V6 “and yet again gearbox is called out
” fails to deliver thrills like a Cayman does “
“ we wish it luck “ oh dear
when I read this it gives me the impression when I drive it I’ll just think I’m driving bog standard car not a sports car. Sounds like they have dialled it back to be too civilised - thats not what I thought I was getting …..
I’m sorry but these reviews are not great at all
 

Leonard

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What's the likelihood of a V6 more hard core version?
Very likely. But judging where we are now and where it needs to be in terms of the competition in 2 years time, it will still be good but not great. I doubt there will be any significant investment in the V6 now. Likely just be the 430 engine and usual lightened body panels and seats, mild aero and tweaked suspension.
 

Leonard

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Oh dear just reading that review does not fill me with confidence that this is a drivers car so has Jenson Button been spouting a load of tosh 🥴
From reading that review it doesn’t even come across as exciting to drive. Getting the feeling we’re paying £80k for just something that looks good but is a step back where they have been & from being a drivers car. Quotes:
” you could argue this is a lot of money for a car with a Toyota V6 “and yet again gearbox is called out
” fails to deliver thrills like a Cayman does “
“ we wish it luck “ oh dear
when I read this it gives me the impression when I drive it I’ll just think I’m driving bog standard car not a sports car. Sounds like they have dialled it back to be too civilised - thats not what I thought I was getting …..
I’m sorry but these reviews are not great at all
If you are driving on the road only I don't think you have to worry too much about the Sports Car thrills. Roads are generally too congested now to drive at anywhere near the limit. It's odd to think of a Lotus not pushing you on to use those last 2 tenths of performance/ability tho and I find that confusing and disappointing
 

Leonard

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Quite unbelievable really - especially as it’s the configuration I’ve ordered on the basis of the outgoing Evora 410. Given how good the Evora is to drive, this seems to be another backward step compared to the outgoing base Evora 410 … along with being nickel and dimed on performance, rpm limit, hp.

Steve Sutcliffe is a pretty good judge. He rates it highly overall, but not in the areas I really want in sports car costing £81,000. Although it sounds like it could be a competitor (on the right suspension of course) for a used Bentley or Aston (or even a 911) for that money - if I wanted a nice looking, fast, good enough handling car that has a lot of feel-good feeling.

Sadly, nickel and dimed is how I’m feeling about this car and, what is now seeming to be a lot of tosh that’s been emanating in various forms from Hethel over the past 12 months.

For me it just had to be as good dynamically and performance as an Evora 400 from 2015 (ok better than the outgoing base model of the Evora 410 would’ve been lovely). And I’ve seen nothing that suggests it is. But maybe that is a good thing: the Evora holds its own special place in the Lotus pantheon.

So, as I write, the Emira has become a lot clearer! as some have said, expectations were wrong. They said it’s not a prettier Evora with a nice interior…

And now I realise they were right!!!

It’s #theothersportscar and not #forthedrivers!

At last, I get it now!
It was stuff like this coming out of Lotus that set expectations high. All the talk around for the drivers. If it was PPI I'd be wanting compensation 🙃😂
 

Cachaco131

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Very likely. But judging where we are now and where it needs to be in terms of the competition in 2 years time, it will still be good but not great. I doubt there will be any significant investment in the V6 now. Likely just be the 430 engine and usual lightened body panels and seats, mild aero and tweaked suspension.
Thanks. Maybe I should get on that list! I'll test drive the base one first though
 

kratedisease

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I'm so disappointed if this is not the case and Lotus are simply taking the easy option with this early launch edition car to appeal to the masses and saving all of the good stuff until later in the life cycle 😪 #forthedrivers?

Yup I am sure in 2 or 3 years there will be a 430HP manual version with hot looking Carbon backed race seats
 

CarGuy07

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It was stuff like this coming out of Lotus that set expectations high. All the talk around for the drivers. If it was PPI I'd be wanting compensation 🙃😂
Exactly!! Under promise and over delivery is much better than vice versa.
 

Leonard

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Yup I am sure in 2 or 3 years there will be a 430HP manual version with hot looking Carbon backed race seats
Don't get me wrong I knew this would be coming, just didn't expect the launch car to be lacking dynamically
 

Nick in Sydney

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I'm a bit baffled by his comments about the steering. Harry raves about the steering, CAR magazine raves about it ("even better than the Evora") . . . I wonder if the tyres+suspension choice is a big factor?
 
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Eagle7

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Looking at the license plate, AU22 BUP, isn't this the exact same car that MotorTrend drove and tested? How could two reviews of the same car be so different? MotorTrend's review was quite good. His driving impressions were very different from Steve's.

I think what @daniel heald said is going to be quite true for those who are unsure or undecided. You're going to need to drive one yourself with the chassis setup you're interested in, in order to get a genuine feel for whether or not you're going to like it.

These reviews have too much variance which is hard to understand. I was thinking maybe they needed to be driving the same car to get a better overall view, but here they are actually driving the same car, and the difference in impressions is truly baffling because they don't read like it's the same car. Watching the steering wheel respond to the road in Harry's video sure doesn't look like 'nothing more than okay feedback'. How does the exact same car give such different impressions?
 

idleuser

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I leave this here. This is the exact Cayman used to benchmark the pre-production Emirat. We should all be driving Supras and Alpine A110 for a lot less coin. Look up Topgear

SPORTS CARS: N/A Porsche 718 Cayman GTS vs Turbo Audi TT RS | Stig's Garage ft. Becky Evans​


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