Sometimes car enthusiasts need a 430 HP reminder in the form of a Lotus Exige that there’s history behind these cars, a history that’s worth commemorating.
Mention Lotus and 1963 and most Lotus enthusiasts will cite that that’s the year that the Lotus Type 25 dominated Formula 1 and brought home Lotus’s first of seven constructor championships for the company. Everyone else? Crickets. To honor and help commemorate the success that Lotus Founder Colin Chapman aided by ace driver Jim Clark and their accomplishments, according to Lotus in a press release they dropped earlier today (Apr. 4,2018) they are dropping a special edition of their hottest car, the Lotus Exige Cup 430 dubbed the Type 25. No, this special edition isn’t any faster than a regular Cup 430 but you’re totally missing the point! Check out a couple of official renderings of this beautiful one-off below.
In motor racing, most Formula one cars up until that point employed some sort of tubular space frame with the majority of the stresses distributed on the cross-directional tubes. Although early versions of the monocoque chassis were used before 1962, Colin Chapman was the first to campaign a fully aluminum monocoque chassis which used the design of the body to distribute stresses evenly among the entire chassis. Colin Chapman used riveted metal plates to make a “closed” cell. Years later, McLaren was the first to make a carbon fiber monocoque in Formula 1.
Colin Chapman dubbed this Lotus the Type 25 and a year later, Lotus won their first F1 constructor’s championship.
The spirit of the Type 25 lives on in this Lotus Exige Cup 430 Type 25. With only 25 being made, they’re probably all spoken for by the time of this writing.
The stock Lotus Exige Cup 430 is Lotus’s most extreme Exige. Power comes courtesy of a supercharged 3.5L Toyota V6 that makes 430 HP and 325 lb-ft. In a car that weighs 2,328 pounds, this Exige moves. 0-60 MPH is gone in 3.2 seconds and you can push this track beat up to 180 MPH without breaking a sweat.
This Type 25 edition comes with a special exterior and interior paint scheme along with “A signed hardback copy of the acclaimed book: Jim Clark: Tribute to a Champion by Eric Dymock signed by Clive Chapman, and Bob Dance, a principal mechanic for Jim Clark during his Formula 1 race career, accompanies every car.”
If you want, you can even pick up your Type 25 edition at their factory in Hethel, Norfolk, England.
If you were wondering, the last time Lotus raced in Formula 1 as a constructor was in 1994. Although Lotus returned in name in 2010, it wasn’t quite the same.