1999 Lotus Esprit Sport 350

Above Images ©IMAGE CREDITS - Group Lotus plc

Taking the V8 GT futher, the Sport 350 was one of the most exclusive Esprits made. It featured the standard-spec V8 with blue-painted intake manifolds. What set the 350 Sport apart from the VT GT was a number brake, suspension and chassis improvements.

Externally, a large carbon-fibre rear wing was attached. This wing was highly similar to the wing used on the X190R racecar. Indeed the Sport 350 had one of the most prominent wings to adorn a road car.

Lowering the kerb weight was a primary design focus for Sport 350. For this goal, special magnesium wheels were employed. At the time of manufacture, these were the lightest wheels availble on the market. Also reducing the weight, was a lightweight bodyshell. In total, the engineers managed to shed 80 kgs off the standard V8 GT.

Apart from the weight reduction, the other major change to Sport 350 was its braking system. Exclusive to the car are 320mm discs with blue-painted AP Racing Calipers. When Lotus engineers designed this car, they wanted it to be the fastest stopping Esprit. And it was. The car could go from 60 to 0 mph in just 3.2 seconds.

While exclusivity was offered with the Sport 350, it is ashame Lotus never tuned the engine beyond its standard specification. This is strange given the fact that every other aspect of the car was up-rated for track use. It was one of the closest cars to emulate the track experience on the road.

In total, only 50 Sport 350s were made, all having a huge 350 decal along the side of the car.


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