The Exige S has had an extensive face-lift inside and out.
The Exige S has had an extensive face-lift inside and out.
Dramatic new rear wing is also adjustable.
Dramatic new rear wing is also adjustable.
New front splitter and rear spoiler give it a rather more dramatic profile than we are used to from Lotus.
New front splitter and rear spoiler give it a rather more dramatic profile than we are used to from Lotus.

It's parts bin engineering at its best - Lotus has dropped the 258kW, 3.5-litre, supercharged V6 Evora S engine into the back of the Exige S chassis to create a nasty little sports coupé with a astonishing power-to-weight ratio of 239kW per tonne.

That'll take it from 0-100km/h in significantly less than four seconds, with top speed limited only by the final-drive gearing; somewhere on the scary side of 270km/h would be a good guess.

The Exige S has also had an extensive face-lift inside and out, including a new front splitter and rear spoiler to give it a strong, rather more dramatic profile than we are used to from Lotus.

Two new interior packages will be available: Premium and Premium Sport. The Premium pack provides added comfort and style whereas the Premium Sport option is focused on driver involvement.

The Exige S comes with specially made Pirelli P-Zero Corsa tyres, and a dynamic performance management switch allows the driver to choose between three driving modes: Touring, Sport and Off. Or you can order your Exige S with the optional Race Pack, which adds a fourth mode - Race, which will give you the maximum possible traction out of corners.

The Race Pack also has launch control and an optimised (read rock hard) suspension setting for the track.

Lotus boss Dany Bahar said: “Anybody who has driven an Exige will tell you that it's not for the faint-hearted. The new Exige S skips a few rungs on the ladder; quite simply you can't get more Lotus than this.”

Purists are already saying that Colin Chapman, whose lifelong mantra was “First add lightness” would not have approved of the almost 100 extra kilograms the big V6 adds to the weight of the Exige - but they forget that he did it himself in the 1970s when he shoe-horned the Rover 3500 V8 into the engine bay of the tiny Europa.

And anyway, he'd have loved the bottom line: 239kW per tonne. So do we.