1999 Lotus Esprit Sport 350

1999 Lotus Esprit Sport 350

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.


In Detail

submitted byRichard Owen
price $$£64 950
positionMid Longitudinal
aspirationTwin Garrett T25 Turbochargers
valvetrainDOHC, 4 Valves per Cyl
displacement3500 cc / 213.6 in³
bore81 mm / 3.19 in
stroke83 mm / 3.27 in
power260.3 kw / 349 bhp @ 6500 rpm
specific output99.71 bhp per litre
bhp/weight280.32 bhp per tonne
torque399.97 nm / 295.0 ft lbs @ 4250 rpm
driven wheelsRWD
front tires235/40 ZR 17
rear tires295/35 ZR 18
front brakesVented Discs
f brake sizex 320 mm / x 12.6 in
rear brakesBrembro Double Wishbones w/Coil over Dampers, Anti-Roll Bar
r brake sizex 320 mm / x 12.6 in
front wheelsF Brembro Double Wishbones w/Coil over Dampers, Anti-Roll Bar x 21.6 cm / 17 x 8.5 in
rear wheelsR 45.7 x 21.6 cm / 18.0 x 8.5 in
steeringRack & Pinion
f suspensionDouble Wishbones w/Eibach Coil over Dampers, Anti-Roll Bar
r suspensionDouble Wishbones w/Eibach Coil over Dampers, Anti-Roll Bar
curb weight1245 kg / 2745 lbs
wheelbase2420 mm / 95.3 in
front track1520 mm / 59.8 in
rear track1520 mm / 59.8 in
length4417 mm / 173.9 in
width1981 mm / 78.0 in
height1150 mm / 45.3 in
transmissionRenault 5-Speed Manual
gear ratios3.36:1, 2.05:1, 1.38:1, 1.09:1, 0.76:1, :1
final drive3.89:1
top speed~281.6 kph / 175.0 mph
0 – 60 mph~4.7 seconds