New Lotus Exige Sport 410 review

You’d be forgiven for thinking this Lotus Exige Sport 410 is yet another special edition from the Norfolk-based brand. After all, the firm has been rather prolific in that department over the last few years.

But scoff as some might at those limited-run models, they have allowed Lotus to return to a situation strong enough for Chinese giant Geely to buy a 51 per cent stake in the company – thus securing the British sports car firm’s future.

 

With Geely’s commitment, Lotus is now planning further ahead and easing development on the current Elise, Evora and Exige models. Its efforts are now concentrated on all-new cars, the first of which we will see in 2020. In the interim, Lotus has settled on a three-car line-up for the Exige, and the final addition is this: the Exige Sport 410.

This is why the Sport 410 does without the Cup’s extreme vents in the top of the front wheel arches and more aggressive front splitter. And while there may be a reduction in downforce (it still develops 150kg at 180mph) there is also less drag, which is why the 410’s straight-line performance is a match for the 430.

Underpinning the Sport 410 is a re-tuned Cup 430 chassis, with adjustable Nitron springs and dampers. These are a little stiffer than the Cup due to the reduction in aero pressure on the car, while there are new anti-roll bars, too. You also get a set of AP Racing brakes and those 18-inch (17-inch at the front) Team Dynamics wheels are forged items fitted with Michelin Cup 2 tyres.

The Toyota-sourced 3.5-litre supercharged V6 gets a remap to fatten the torque curve and reduce power to 410bhp. Of the three Exiges now offered, the Sport 410 has the flattest torque curve of them all; it uses the same six-speed manual gearbox and is fitted with the 430’s smaller clutch and single-mass flywheel.