Lotus Engineering Wins Two High Profile Green Car Projects

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Lotus Engineering Invests in Low Carbon Vehicle Programmes

June 16, 2008 -- Lotus Engineering, the world renowned automotive consultancy division of Lotus has won two contracts as part of winning project consortia announced by the UK Government Technology Strategy Board. These two project consortia will be allocated part of a total £23 million for 16 innovative low carbon vehicle development programmes. Including investments from companies such as Lotus, these projects collectively represent a total value of £52 million.

Zero Emission London Taxi Commercialisation
Lotus Engineering is a key consortium member of the Zero Emission London Taxi Commercialisation project and is working alongside Intelligent Energy, LTI Ltd and TRW Conekt. Building on Lotus’ considerable experience in developing high technology hybrid demonstrator vehicles, and supporting its many clients on electric vehicle programmes, this project will see the introduction of commercial fleets of zero-emission fuel cell hybrid taxis primarily for London by 2012, and other cities by 2014.

The fuel cell taxi project pushes the complexity of this type of vehicle to a new level of advanced technology. Lotus Engineering will integrate the fuel cell engine with the electric drive train and hydrogen storage system, firstly bench testing, then integrating them back into a ‘buck’ vehicle and finally packaging the assembly into two taxis for full vehicle testing.

Limo-Green
The second project, Limo-Green, takes a Jaguar as a basis for the development proving out the concept of a large luxury hybrid executive saloon, utilising an advanced drive motor, small battery pack and a small Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) for sustained cruising. In a collaboration between Lotus Engineering, Jaguar Cars Ltd, MIRA Ltd and Caparo Vehicle Technologies, the project aim is to demonstrate a large, prestigious executive saloon with less than 120 g/km emissions.

Lotus Engineering will design and build a number of prototype Auxiliary Power Units and provide technical support for installation into the vehicle. The APU is an extremely efficient system, with ultra-high thermal efficiency and high power output.

Mike Kimberley, Chief Executive Officer of Group Lotus Plc said: “We are committed to driving forward with high technology advances into areas such as hybrid and electric vehicles, and we are delighted to be major contributors to two of the low carbon vehicle development projects. There is a world-wide drive to reduce CO2 emission levels and this is something to which we are dedicated, for both our Lotus cars and our global engineering clients. We wholeheartedly endorse the government’s initiatives through this investment from the Technology Strategy Board, which will assist in taking forward research, development and demonstration of these environmentally conscious and green transport solutions.”

Commenting on the Technology Strategy Board's investment in the two projects, its Chief Executive, Iain Gray, said: "We are delighted to invest in these important research, development and demonstration projects. Cleaner and more efficient vehicles are a vitally important part of our response to global climate change challenges and will help the UK to meet demanding new CO2 standards for new vehicles. This is why we are investing in innovative low-carbon technology development through the Low Carbon Vehicles Innovation Platform. Such innovative technology will also help position British companies to benefit from the growing domestic and international demand for lower carbon vehicles."

Notes to Editors

About Group Lotus plc:
The main operating subsidiary of Group Lotus plc is Lotus Cars Ltd, which has two operating divisions - Lotus Engineering and Lotus Cars. Lotus Engineering is an internationally recognised automotive engineering consultancy based in Norfolk, UK. Global facilities include those in Michigan (USA), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), China and offices in Germany and Japan, with rapid expansion in new territories such as South East Asia and the Gulf States.

Lotus Engineering provides comprehensive and versatile consultancy services to many of the world's OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers, offering a full engineering service from initial concept and project design through development and integration of the complete vehicle to meet all worldwide markets and customers to full production. This includes third party 'niche vehicle' engineering and manufacture worldwide.

Lotus Cars builds world class, prestige, high performance sports cars for sale in 37 countries. These include the iconic Lotus Elise, and the Exige and Europa. Lotus is a global high-tech company, expanding rapidly and committed to driving forward technology for both Lotus Cars and its Engineering clients, spearheading research into such areas as hybrids, electric vehicles and renewable fuels.

About the Technology Strategy Board
The Technology Strategy Board is a business-led executive non-departmental public body, established by the government. Its mission is to promote and support research into, and development and exploitation of, technology and innovation for the benefit of UK business, in order to increase economic growth and improve the quality of life. It is sponsored by the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS). For further information please visit innovateuk.org.

Source: Group Lotus plc,

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