The new Lotus Eco Elise makes its official debut at the London Motor Show today. See BBC video.
The Eco Elise uses a host of sustainable materials to make up the body and trim, including hemp, “eco wool,” sisal and a new high-tech, water-based paint that can be applied by hand. It’s fitted with a set of flexible solar panels on the hard top to help power the electrical systems, reducing the drain on the engine and improving efficiency. There is a new green shift light on the instrument panel that assists drivers in maximizing fuel efficiency.
All of these elements reduce the Eco Elise’s footprint throughout its lifecycle, limit the amount of energy used during production. Lotus looked to reduce the car’s environmental impact by focusing on how it is made as well as how it performs:
- Creating cleaner manufacturing processes
- Using sustainable materials
- Reducing carbon impact of logistics
- Developing renewable energy generation
- Promoting efficient driving techniques
- Reducing vehicle weight to improve fuel efficiency
Mike Kimberley, CEO of Group Lotus plc commented “This Eco Elise is a great example of the advanced and affordable green technologies Lotus is developing. We are at the cutting edge of environmental technology and are determined to push forward with our green agenda.
Dramatic improvements to the culture and operations at Lotus has rewarded the company with staggering reductions in energy (Electricity 14%, Gas 30%) and water (11%) consumed across the Hethel headquarters in 2007, compared to 2006. These advances have coincided with improvements in recycling, with 57% of waste product now being recycled.