Lotus reports first operating profit in around 40 years

Lotus' financial reports are in the black, partly thanks to the sales success of the Evora 400 in the United States

Lotus Evora 400 front

Lotus, the car company, will produce an operating profit for the first time this year since the 1970s, according to its flamboyant CEO from Luxembourg, Jean-Marc Gales.

Talking to Auto Express, Gales said: "Not since the Chapman era has the car side of Lotus turned an operating profit.” And he puts such success chiefly down to the unprecedented success of the Evora 400 in the USA.

The 400 was launched officially by Lotus in the US in August this year, and is now sold out there until late March next year. Basically, they can't build them fast enough at Hethel to satisfy demand in the US, which remains world’s biggest sports car market.

Best sports cars

But there are other key reasons why the car making side of Group Lotus is at last making an operating profit, having spent decades in the financial wilderness.

When Gales joined the company in May 2014, there were 1200 employees making less than 1200 cars a year at the Hethel-based factory.

“Today” says Gales, “we have approximately 800 employees producing over 2000 cars a year, all of which are of a much higher quality than before. And we are also now selling top quality cars in the United States, where they seem to understand and connect with our cars nowadays.”

Lotus Evora 410 review

Gales, 55, joined Group Lotus as CEO just over two years ago having been the boss at both Peugeot and Citroen previously, with significant stints at Daimler, VW and GM on the way up.

In the future, he says, there is the possibility of a Chinese-built Lotus SUV to further boost the company’s profits, and broaden its appeal. But that’s still a good few years away yet.

In the more immediate future expect a roadster version of the Evora, yet fruitier versions of the Exige, Evora and Elise plus maybe a factory return to serious GT racing as well.

What do you think of the news? Leave us a comment below...

Recommended

Electric Lotus Evija looks to Type 49 racer for soundtrack
Lotus Evija
Lotus

Electric Lotus Evija looks to Type 49 racer for soundtrack

The Lotus Evija’s electric motor will be accompanied by an edited version of the Type 49’s V8 engine noise
10 Mar 2021
Lotus E-R9 EV endurance racer previews future engineering tech
Lotus E-R9 - front
Lotus

Lotus E-R9 EV endurance racer previews future engineering tech

The Lotus E-R9 EV concept gives a window into the future of electric powertrains and aerodynamics for the British brand’s racers
16 Feb 2021
New 2022 Lotus 'Type 131': the brand's new sports car in detail
Lotus Type 131 - front (exclusive image)
Lotus

New 2022 Lotus 'Type 131': the brand's new sports car in detail

The new Lotus sports car, which is codenamed Type 131, is likely to feature V6 hybrid power, and our exclusive images preview how it could look
8 Feb 2021
Lotus appoints new boss
Matt Windle Lotus
News

Lotus appoints new boss

Matt Windle will replace Phil Popham as the new managing director of Lotus
28 Jan 2021

Most Popular

'Nissan has been quietly building an advantage over electric car rivals'
Opinion Nissan EV
Nissan

'Nissan has been quietly building an advantage over electric car rivals'

Steve Fowler thinks Nissan is in a great position to build on the Leaf's success
8 Apr 2021
New Citroen C5 X flagship crossover set to offer ‘ultimate comfort’
Citroen C5 X - front
Citroen C5

New Citroen C5 X flagship crossover set to offer ‘ultimate comfort’

The new flagship Citroen C5 X will arrive with petrol and plug-in hybrid power, and looks set to cost from around £27,000 when it arrives in the UK in…
12 Apr 2021
New 2021 Skoda Kodiaq facelift brings tougher looks and new vRS
Skoda Kodiaq facelift - front
Skoda Kodiaq

New 2021 Skoda Kodiaq facelift brings tougher looks and new vRS

The updated Skoda Kodiaq SUV gets design tweaks with a more imposing front end, while the hot Kodiaq vRS gets Golf GTI power
13 Apr 2021