Lotus and Williams Advanced Engineering have joined forces to work on advanced propulsion technologies, with their work expected to lead to a new electric hypercar, codenamed Omega.
Both companies are so far staying tight-lipped on the details of the project, other than saying that the partnership will pair Lotus' expertise in producing lightweight vehicles with Williams Advanced Engineering's skills in advanced propulsion and battery technology gleaned from its work with the Formula E racing series.
“Our new technology partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering is part of a strategy to expand our knowledge and capability in the rapidly changing automotive landscape," says Lotus Cars CEO, Phil Popham. "Applying advanced propulsion powertrains can provide numerous exciting solutions across multiple vehicle sectors. Our combined and complementary experiences make this a very compelling match of engineering talent, technical ability and pioneering British spirit.”
Lotus' patriotism aside, the partnership is expected to pay dividends outside the UK, with international reports confirming the brand is working on a new electric hypercar, currently codenamed Omega, that is expected to launch within the next two years.
Work on the Omega, which is expected to wear a price tag north of $3.5m, began last month, which makes the timing of this partnership suspiciously convenient.
Lotus is 51 per cent owned by Chinese automotive giant Geely, which also owns Volvo, and company chairman Li Shufu is reportedly working on a mammoth $US1.9b ($2.57b) rejuvenation program that would elevate the small-fry sports car brand to the performance-car big leagues.
Last year, Bloomberg reported the plan involved adding staff and facilities in the UK, as well as increasing Geely's ownership stake in Lotus. And the Chinese company has form in this area, having invested heavily in Volvo to return the faltering Swedish brand to showroom success.
Would you by a Lotus hypercar?