Founder, Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman, studied structural engineering at University College in London
Chapman's 2nd Trials Car
During his leave periods from the RAF, Chapman built his second trials car
Mark 3 Circuit Racing
The first circuit racing car was designed; the first to actually be called a Lotus
The Lotus Engineering Company
Chapman formed the Lotus Engineering Company
Team Lotus is set up
The team comes into being.
The Lotus 11
Developed as a descendant of the Mark 9
The Lotus Seven was launched as a ‘no-frills’ sports car.
The Eleven achieved a historic win in the 750cc Class of the Index of Performance at Le Mans
Group Lotus PLC
This is the year Chapman established Group Lotus
The move to Cheshunt
The factory moves from the original showroom on the outskirts of London, to a new purpose-built facility at Cheshunt.
Focused on winning, Chapman adopted and improved upon the mid-engined layout of the successful Cooper race cars.
Keen to maintain Lotus’ pre-eminence in Junior racing, Chapman developed the Type 20.
The Type 21 was the FIRST F1 car to use a reclining driving position.
Lotus introduced the Type 24 with a conventional chassis at the start of the ’62 Formula One season.
The 25 was the FIRST F1 car to use a revolutionary fully stressed ‘monocoque’ chassis design.
The Type 26 Lotus Elan was introduced.
Chapman developed his first Indianapolis car, with a power to weight ratio of over 800bhp per ton.
Lotus assisted Ford in winning the British Saloon Car Championship.
With Jim Clark at the wheel of the Type 25, Lotus secured its first Formula One Constructors’ Championship, and the Drivers title.
The Type 33 was an evolution of the monocoque Type 25.
Jim Clark brought home another double for Team Lotus, winning both constructors’ and drivers F1 championships.
Clark also won the famous Indy 500 race in the USA with a new record.
Type 36 Lotus Elan fixed head coupe made its debut.
Move to Hethel
It was in this year that Lotus moved to a purpose-built factory based in Norfolk.
The FIRST F1 car to use the engine as a structural member.
Type 45 & Type 46
The enhanced Elan S3 drophead made its debut, followed by the mid-engined Europa road car.
Soon after the Europa went into production, work began on the Type 47, a Cosworth-Ford powered racing version.
The FIRST car to be powered by the legendary Cosworth-Ford DFV V8 engine.
The more spacious Type 50 Elan +2 went into production
Jim Clark tragically died in a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim.
Graham Hill drove to victory winning the Constructors’ and Drivers’ titles for Lotus again.
The FIRST commercial sponsorship in Formula One.
The FIRST use of Aerofoil wings in F1.
Lotus launched the S2 Europa.
Vastly different from its predecessor, the S4 was designed to be sold to a much wider public through an all-new dealer network.
The Type 63 became the FIRST F1 car to use the wedge shaped front.
In the January the famous Elan Sprint sports car was introduced.
Team Lotus unveils the innovative Type 72 formula one car that went on to achieve twenty grand prix wins.
Rindt was tragically killed at Monza before the season's end.
Victory came again in both the Constructor's and Driver's championships.
Europa became one of the worlds quickest production sports cars.
Emerson Fittipaldi won both Constructors' and Drivers' Championship.
The Lotus Esprit concept, designed by Ital Design, is shown for the first time.
Lotus causes confusion by naming its next race car the Type 74, a type number already given to the Europa.
Lotus won the Constructors Championship for the sixth time
Lotus' first 4 seater sports car was launched, the attractively shaped Type 75 Elite.
JPS Mark 1
The Type 76 Formula One car, dubbed the John Player Special Mark 1.
The Elite was awarded the DON Safety Trophy by the UK Minister of Transport.
At the Paris Motor show Lotus stunned the world with the premier of the dramatic Guigiario-styled Esprit (Type 79).
The Esprit was to reappear shortly afterwards at the London motor show, in company with the new 2+2 Eclat (Type 76).
JPS MK 2
The FIRST car to incorporate adjustable suspension.
The spy who loved me
The name's Bond... James Bond...
The FIRST car to manage airflow under the car including ground effects.
Team Lotus dominated Formula One, achieving 12 pole positions, and 8 wins, and winning the double.
Chrysler UK (Talbot) called in the Lotus Engineering to help develop a high performance version of the Chrysler Sunbeam.
HRH Duke of Edinburgh visited the Hethel factory.
The Type 80 “Wingless Wonder” F1 race car is introduced, to be driven by Mario Andretti and Carlos Reutemann.
The awesome Esprit Turbo was launched in tremendous style at London's Royal Albert Hall.
The FIRST car designed with a carbon fibre monocoque, and two chassis.
For Your Eyes Only
The Esprit Turbo shot to stardom, featuring strongly in the new Bond movie 'For Your Eyes Only.'
It was neatly styled, powered by a 160bhp 2.2-litre Lotus twin-cam engine, and handled superbly.
With Elio de Angelis at the wheel, the Lotus Type 91 won its first Grand Prix Formula One race at the Austrian Grand Prix.
Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman
Died suddenly from a heart attack at only 54 years of age.
The Lotus Active Suspension System was announced
At the request of Lotus, Toyota acquired a 16.5% stake in Lotus.
Ayrton Senna replaced the departing Nigel Mansell.
Contracted with Lotus Engineering to develop a family of high performance 16-valve engines for its future range of passenger cars.
The Excel SE is announced at the London Motor Show.
General Motors acquired 100% shareholding of Group Lotus plc.
Camel became Team Lotus' new major sponsor, and Honda the new engine supplier.
New Esprit Turbo
At the London Motorfair the new Esprit Turbo made its debut.
In celebration of the company's 40th anniversary, a limited edition Esprit Turbo was produced.
Formula One World Champion, Nelson Piquet joined Lotus, following Ayrton Senna’s departure.
Esprit Turbo SE
The launch of the most powerful Lotus supercar to date.
The Elan (Type 100) roadster was launched at the London Motorfair.
The Lotus Type 101 introduced the normally aspirated 3.5 litre Judd V8 engine.
The legendary Lotus Carlton (Lotus Omega outside the UK) was launched.
Showroom Stock Series
In the USA, a works-supported team of three Esprit Turbo SE's entered the 'Showroom Stock' race series.
The Elan received the British Design Council award.
Team Lotus became privately owned by a new management consortium led by Peter Wright and Peter Collins.
The M200, a futuristic concept sports car based on the Elan caused a stir at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September.
Sport Esprit X180R
Doc Bundy, driving the Sport Esprit X180R, took the Drivers' title in the Sports Car Club of America World Challenge for 'street-legal' cars.
Chris Boardman won the 4000m Pursuit Gold Medal at the Barcelona Olympics on the Lotus Superbike.
Lotus Engineering remained busy with the extraordinary 'SID' (Structure Isolation Dynamics) research vehicle.
Bugatti International of Italy bought Group Lotus from General Motors.
The Esprit S4 had a minor facelift and a range of mechanical refinements including power-steering as standard.
The new Lotus Sport 110 road bike made its debut on the gruelling Tour de France.
The Elan S2 was launched at the Geneva Motor Show.
The S4S came with 300bhp, new wheels and tyres, and revised suspension settings.
Lotus Sport 110
Multiple successes with the Lotus Sport 110 carbon-composite bicycle.
An Esprit S4 ‘Police Car’ was produced, demonstrating that there was no point running from the law.
British National GT Series
Out on the race track, an Esprit Sport 300, driven by Thorkild Thyrring, won the British National GT series.
Team Lotus Disbanded
Spiraling costs led to the disbanding of Team Lotus at the start of the F1 season, closing an important chapter in Lotus history.
GT Race Programme
The Lotus GT race programme was brought in-house in preparation for an all-out assault on UK sports car endurance racing.
Lotus produced its 50,000th car in the March of 1995.
Lotus was the featured marque at the Monterey Historic Automobile Races in California, USA.
The Elise was unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show, to the obvious delight of the press and public.
Proton announced it had acquired an 80% majority shareholding in Group Lotus plc.
The all-new Esprit GT1 racer was unveiled at the Paul Ricard circuit in France.
At the Geneva Motorshow the Esprit S4 GT3 was well received by both public and press.
The Elise became the darling of the world's motoring press.
Lotus staff create the ‘Living logo’ in the grounds of Ketteringham Hall
HRH Prince of Wales officially opened a new £3.5 million engine test cell block.
The Elise proved more of a hit than even Lotus expected.
The Elise was chosen by the Design Council as a prestigious ‘Millennium Product'
In September Lotus hosted its 50th anniversary celebrations with a party at Hethel
At the Birmingham Motor Show in October, Lotus revealed the stunning 340R as a concept car.
Esprit Sport 350
The lightweight and big-braked Esprit Sport 350 supercar was released as a dramatic limited edition model.
Lotus launched the Elise 111S at Geneva Motor Show.
The Opel Speedster/ VX220 concept was shown, and the sports car went on to be built at the Lotus factory in Hethel.
Lotus revealed an all-new mini-supercar concept that fitted into the range between the Elise and Esprit.
Elise Sport 160
In response to enthusiasts demand for even more performance Lotus responded with the introduction of the Sport 160
On the eve of the inaugural round of the Autobytel Lotus Championship race series, Lotus thrilled the crowds by unveiling the new Exige.
The new generation Elise was launched, with improved performance, styling, handling and quality.
The new bespoke Research and Development Centre at Hethel opened in July.
Lotus, famous for taking things to extremes, provided support to Coventry University design student, Ted Mannerfelt.
Lotus Cars were awarded the Queens Award for Enterprise.
PROTON become 100% shareholders in Lotus Group International Ltd.
Lotus became the shirt sponsor for Norwich City Football team
End of an era
The last Lotus Esprit rolled off the production line
Lotus launched the new 189hp Lotus Elise 111R.
At the 2004 Geneva Show, Lotus presented the new Lotus Exige on the world stage.
20,000th Lotus Elise Drives Off The Production Line, making it the most popular Lotus ever.
Lotus Sport Exige
The 400bhp 850kg GT2 specification race car debuted in 2005,
At the Geneva motor show Lotus Engineering unveiled APX ("Aluminium Performance Crossover" ) vehicle
Sport Exige GT3
Secures victory in the 2006 British GT Manufacturers Championship
Lotus went into the Guinness Book of Records for the biggest meet of any marque
The all new Evora is unveiled
Lotus Lightweight Structures
Group Lotus plc, announced the creation of Lotus Lightweight Structure
Clark Type 25
Launched as a limited edition to celebrate Jim Clark's genius as a driver.
Lotus Engineering celebrated being awarded 'The Engineer Technology + Innovation Award of 2008'
The Lotus Sport 2-Eleven GT4 Supersport race car asserted itself at the pinnacle of the 2-Eleven range
Lotus Engineering, unveiled the Range Extender engine at the Frankfurt International Motor Show in a series hybrid vehicle.
Evora wins a multitude of awards, including the prestigious Top Gear Magazine's 'Sportscar of the Year...
The Lotus Evora Type 124 Endurance Racecar was developed from the award-winning Evora road car
The Lotus Evora Cup was unveiled in January at the Autosport International
At the International Geneva Motor Show Lotus Engineering unveiled the Lotus Evora 414E Hybrid concept
Evora Carbon Concept
The Evora Carbon Concept was unveiled at the Geneva Motorshow.
The 2011 Lotus Elise has as a new evolution body design and features the new high technology 1ZR-FAE 1.6 litre engine
"The Engineer" Awards
Project Omnivore wins first place in the Automotive, Rail and Marine sector while the Fuel Cell Hybrid Taxi triumphs in the energy sector.
Lotus returns to F1
The iconic Lotus name returned to Formula 1 for the 2010 season after a more than 15 year long absence.
Elise Club Racer
The Elise Club Racer is announced as a stripped-back, even lighterweight version of the Elise.
Lotus Engineering and HARMAN create the next generation intelligent pedestrian warning system
Lotus Range Extender
Lotus Engineering unveil the supercharged, extremely compact, lightweight, low-cost engine and generator designed specifically for hybrid electric vehicles.
Hethel Test Track
The Lotus test track at Hethel was renovated in 2011 and officially re-opened on 21 June
Malaysian DRB Hicom Bhd. purchase a majority stake in Lotus' parent company Proton Holdings Bhd
Exige S Roadster
The first time an Exige model has been offered with a factory-fitted soft top roof.
Lotus headlined the world's biggest car culture event in the summer.
Lotus Exige S voted joint winner of evo's "Car of the Year 2012"
Evora Sports Racer
A visually enhanced and optimised version of the mid-engined 3.5 litre Evora is launched, available in both naturally-aspirated or supercharged variants.
Elise S Cup
Ready for early press assessments, the Elise Cup S would be the most focused version of the still box-fresh Elise.
The multi-lingual, international, automotive businessman took over the reins of Group Lotus plc in May 2014
The new Lotus Exige Automatic, in either Roadster, or Coupe forms, would be enticingly and automatically better.
Elise S Cup
The Elise has never been better.
The Lotus Evora 400 was launched at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show.
Heralding the next generation of Lotus high performance sports cars, the 3-Eleven is the company’s quickest and most expensive series production car ever.
Evora Sport 410
Lotus’ famous Lightweight Laboratory has been hard at work cutting the weight of the Evora 400 by a massive 70kg.
Elise Cup 250
The fastest ever line up of Lotus production road cars was showcased at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show
Exige Cup 380
The limited production Exige Cup 380 is revealed in April.
The ultimate Evora variant, the GT430, is announced in September.
Geely Majority Stake
Geely Holding Group buys a 51% stake in Group Lotus.
Exige Cup 430
The ballistic Exige Cup 430 is launched on 9th November.
Mr Feng Qingfeng
Geely announces Mr Feng Qingfeng’s appointment as CEO of Group Lotus plc in June.
Lotus celebrates its 70th Anniversary at Hethel in September.
Phil Popham is appointed Senior Vice President - Commercial Operations for Group Lotus and CEO - Lotus Sports Cars.
Evora GT410 Sport
Evora GT410 Sport launched.
Exige Sport 410
Exige Sport 410 launched.
Lotus debut the Evora GT410 Sport and Evora GT4 Concept at the 2019 Shanghai International Auto Show.
Evija World Premiere
Evija, the British pure-electric production hypercar, representing Lotus's latest technology and design language, was officially unveiled in London