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Lotus Excel
1985 Lotus Excel
Manufacturer Lotus Cars
Production 1982–1992
Predecessor Lotus Eclat
Class Sports car
Body style(s) 2-door coupe
Engine(s) 2.2 L Lotus 912 Slant Four
Transmission(s) 5-speed Toyota W58 manual
4-speed ZF automatic
Related Lotus Eclat

The Type 89 Lotus Excel, built from 1982 to 1992, is a front-engined, rear-wheel drive car based on the design of the earlier Lotus Eclat, which itself was based on the earlier Lotus Elite II.

Toyota engaged Lotus to assist with engineering work on the Supra. During this period, Toyota became a major shareholder in Lotus, later giving up their holding when General Motors bought Lotus.

Part of the deal between Lotus and Toyota included the use of many Toyota components in Lotus' cars. The original Excel (aka the Éclat Excel) used the W58 manual transmission, driveshafts, rear differential, 14x7 in alloy wheels, and door handles with the Supra Mk II, which was made from 1982 to 1986. The engine was the familiar all-aluminium, DOHC 2.2 L Lotus 912 Slant Four (which was used in the Lotus Esprit S3). During its lifetime, the Excel received two major upgrades with the introduction of the Excel SE (a 180 bhp/134 kW engine vs the standard 160 bhp/119 kW engined car) in 1985 and the Excel SE (SA with automatic gearbox) in 1986. Further facelifts in 1989 saw Citroen-derived mirrors, as featured on the Esprit, and 15 inch OZ alloy wheels to a similar pattern as the Esprit's.

According to Lotus records, only 1 Excel was manufactured to USA specification. The lack of release in the USA was due to the high emission regulations (which would hinder the cars performance), and poor sales of the car in Europe

Models produced

  • Excel 1982-1992
  • Excel SE 1985-1992
  • Excel SA 1986-1992

External links



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