Undoubtedly, a lot has changed at Lotus in the last few years. When Chinese automotive giant Geely took over the struggling Norfolk brand in 2017, a change in vision was immediately implemented. Instead of focusing on lightweight petrol sports cars, Geely wanted Lotus to instead future-proof itself by becoming a leader in the luxury EV space.
Hence the all-electric Evija hypercar was developed as a halo model for the brand. Meanwhile, the traditionally powered Emira sports car was released in an effort to keep enthusiasts on board while also showing off Lotus’ next-gen design language.
However, the upcoming Eletre will undoubtedly be the bread and butter of the brand. A luxury electric SUV with 373 miles of range, the Eletre’s $85,000 base point should ensure it sells in relatively strong numbers.
Earlier this week it emerged that Lotus will be going public via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The deal will see Lotus valued at $5.4 billion with existing shareholders (the largest being Geely) retaining 89.7% of equity.
“Lotus Technology” will be listed on the NASDAQ under the ticker LOT. Lotus’ proposed $5.7 billion market cap is similar to that of Mazda, despite the latter selling significantly more vehicles on an annual basis.
But after all, market caps rarely reflect the profit or output levels of manufacturers. Instead, much of it is to do with hype and brand recognition. For example Ferrari currently has a similar valuation to Ford, with both automakers being worth in the region of $50 billion. Yet for every one Ferrari sold Ford sells roughly 150 cars.
Lotus will undoubtedly be looking to cash in on its renowned name, even if it’s gradually moving further and further away from the “simplify, then add lightness” motto it used to abide by.
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