The Final Lotus Elise Is Going to the Woman It Was Named After
Elisa Artioli was a toddler when her grandfather named the Lotus Elise after her. Now she’s taken delivery of the very last one.
Twenty-five years after it first began, Lotus Elise production is coming to an end. The final Elise, however, has been reserved for somebody very fitting: Elisa Artioli, the woman the car was originally named after.
Taking delivery of her newest Elise last week (she already owns a silver 1997 Series 1 named Eli), Elisa Artioli is the granddaughter of Romano Artioli. Romano served as the chairman of both Lotus and Bugatti at the time the Elise was first introduced and named the car after his granddaughter, who was only a toddler at the time.
The final customer Elise—which is the 35,124th Elise ever made—has been painted Championship Gold and is a Sport 240 Final Edition. It's powered by a mid-mounted, supercharged, and charge-cooled 1.8-liter four-cylinder sourced from Toyota making 181 pound-feet of torque and, as its name suggests, 240 horsepower. Lotuses have never been about big power, though. Instead, they're famous for packing very little weight. The Elise Sport 240 weighs just 2,033 pounds unladen, getting from zero to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds.
Sport 240-specific upgrades include a 23-hp bump over the Sport 220 which it replaces, Anthracite wheels that are about a pound lighter each, a TFT digital dash, a new leather-and-Alcantara flat-bottom steering wheel, and some new color choices. Elisa has opted to name hers "Sunshine." In this day and age, it's not uncommon to see significant-production-order cars being pawned for big bucks on the auction block but considering the personal and familial significance of Elisa's Sport 240, don't expect it to pop up on Bring a Trailer any time soon.
An avid driver, Elisa Artioli is the founder of Delightful Driving, a company that organizes driving tours, track days, and other car enthusiast social events. Per Carscoops, she spends most of her time in Italy and studied as an architect.
Along with the Elise, the Lotus Exige and Evora sports cars are also going away. The cars will be replaced with a handful of new Lotus cars, one of which is the new Emira.
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