Lotus introduces potent four-cylinder Emira i4

With a mid-mounted Mercedes AMG 4 cylinder in the latest Lotus Emira i4, the Emira range expands with a fizzy four-pot offering that promises a drive experience all its own.

Jul 14, 2023

Since its introduction here in 2022, the Lotus Emira 3.5 litre V6 has captivated pure driving enthusiasts with the brand’s signature handling characteristics. Now, Lotus has expanded the Emira range with the introduction of a four-cylinder powertrain, further enhancing its appeal.

This new addition to the Emira range features the same striking design and benchmark ride and handling but generates power via a new 365 metric horsepower mid-mounted four-cylinder engine, making it the most powerful four-cylinder Lotus sports car of all time.

Supplied by technical partner Mercedes-AMG, the all-aluminium, turbocharged 2.0-litre unit is based on the world’s most powerful four-cylinder in series production.

Badged for launch as the Emira i4 First Edition, it has been further developed by Lotus with new intake and exhaust systems, plus a bespoke calibration matched to new transmission shift-mapping. Developing 360bhp (365PS) and 430Nm, this makes it a perfect match to the Emira’s lightweight, strong, stiff, bonded and extruded aluminium chassis structure and aligns to the Lotus ethos of delivering higher performance by reducing mass.

Like the renowned 400bhp supercharged V6, the four-cylinder car will deliver plenty of performance and responsiveness with 0-62mph (0-100km/h) coming in just in just 4.4 seconds and a the Emira 4 cylinder boasts a 180mph (290km/h) maximum speed. All the while bringing its own unique character to the Emira range.

That character is enhanced by the day-to-day usability and comfort of the smooth and rapid shifting dual-clutch transmission. It also offers the added advantages of lower fuel consumption and a target CO2 emissions figure of 208g/km (WLTP combined).

The Emira's four-cylinder powertrain features a twin-scroll turbocharger, combined direct and port fuel injection system, and variable valvetrain. These advanced technologies work together to deliver the perfect balance of power, responsiveness, and efficiency. Lotus has meticulously calibrated the intake and exhaust systems to ensure optimum performance. Despite its impressive power output, the Emira achieves lower fuel consumption and targets a CO2 emissions figure of 208g/km (WLTP combined).

That power unit is harnessed to an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT),  to ensure the Emira offers rapid and seamless gear shifts, providing drivers with the option of full manual control or the comfort of automatic gear changes. Accelerating from 0 to 62mph (0-100km/h) in just 4.4 seconds and achieving a maximum speed of 180mph (290km/h), the Emira delivers exhilarating performance.

The engine and transmission mapping, combined with Drive Modes, create a refined and relaxed character in Tour mode, while Sport and Track modes offer incredible launch performance, quick throttle response, and dynamic driving experiences. The Emira provides the high-performance feel and connection that Lotus drivers expect.

Complementing the changes to the chassis hardware is a completely new calibration for the Electronic Stability Control system. There’s also an e-Diff function which can apply carefully modulated brake pressure to the rear wheels in order to maximise traction by the transfer of torque to the one with the most grip, which is particularly beneficial when accelerating out of slow corners. It also enhances dynamic performance and control in challenging conditions, such as roads covered in snow, rain or mud.

And of course the design is immediately Lotus as well and is inspired by the all-electric Evija hypercar. Like the V6, the Emira 4-cylinder features full-LED headlights with a double 'blade' daytime running light signature, aerodynamic bonnet ducts, and deployable door handles that reduce drag. The sculpted exterior seamlessly integrates intake ducts into the muscular rear haunches, contributing to both engine and brake cooling. The Emira's design creates passive downforce, ensuring enhanced grip and precise handling.

Inside the Emira, drivers are met with a luxurious and spacious cabin designed for ultimate comfort and usability. The cockpit features a 12.3-inch TFT instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system with integrated navigation. The system offers seamless integration with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Lotus has partnered with KEF audio to develop a premium 10-channel, 560W audio system that delivers a hyper-realistic sound experience. The 12-way power-adjustable heated seats provide support during spirited driving and comfort on long journeys. The Emira offers ample storage space with 208-liters behind the seats and an additional 151 litres in the rear luggage compartment.

The Lotus Emira four cylinder expands the model’s offering and promises to deliver all the unfiltered drive capabilities of its big brother V6 variant, but with a more of an effervescent and efficient power train to provide an experience all its own.