Lotus Tech Center Targets Autonomy and Connectivity

Iconic sportscar maker Lotus is setting its sights on developing advanced autonomous and connected car technology by announcing its new research center.

In partnership with WMG (formerly Warwick Manufacturing Group) at the University of Warwick, the center will also be home to a new headquarters for the company’s engineering consultancy. It is to be established at the Wellesbourne Campus of the university.

WMG has quickly built up a reputation in the UK automotive industry for spearheading research into connectivity and autonomous driving technologies and has already partnered with several automotive in projects including with Jaguar Land Rover. The pair have worked on developing JLR’s AutopleX project to investigate pioneering safety technology for self-driving technology. The project combines connected, automated and live mapping tech to allow self-driving cars to ‘see’ and ‘talk’ to each other.

Now Lotus wants to tap into this expertise by creating a “substantial” facility consisting of offices, workshops and laboratory space with the opportunity for further expansion. Initially, 130 engineers will move in, complementing the 500-strong engineering team at the home of Lotus Cars in Hethel, Norfolk.

Matt Windle, executive director, engineering, Lotus Cars, said: “This is a big step forward for Lotus and our engineering consultancy.  The new space, facilities and job opportunities at Wellesbourne will be in great demand as we rapidly build our portfolio of external projects.  Our team and specialist skills have grown significantly in the last two years as renewed impetus has been put in to the business with new shareholders and management.  The all-electric Evija hypercar is the first new Lotus Cars product for us to deliver, with significant focus on this at Wellesbourne as we complete the project and continue to advance its technologies for our future programs.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_


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