A few days after dropping the first teaser of its upcoming SUV, Lotus has decided to give us another glimpse at it with a second video titled “See.” The 15-second clip gives a glimpse of the top end of the Lotus Type 132 SUV’s windshield where the front lidar sensor resides. According to the brand, that will be one of the key components of its driver assistance technologies, which will debut alongside its new range of battery-electric vehicles.
From what we can tell, the lidar sensor on the Lotus Type 132 appears to be a similar setup found in upcoming Volvo on Polestar models. The Polestar Precept and the Volvo Recharge Concept both had lidar sensors on the roof near the top of the windshield. Being part of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, it’s likely that Lotus will be sharing technologies with the two brands from Sweden.
The Type 132 SUV is the first of four new Lotus models being launched between now and 2026. It will be the first crossover for the brand and will be underpinned by its new premium architecture. Following in 2023 will be a coupe-like sedan also on the same platform code-named the Type 133. Two years after that in 2025, a mid-size crossover currently dubbed the Type 134 joins the lineup. The last vehicle is a sports car called the Type 135, which will debut in 2026. These will join the 1,970-hp Evija electric hypercar, which is being made in small numbers.
Lotus’ upcoming sedan and two crossovers will be using a battery pack sized between 92 to 120 kWh. They’ll have an 800-volt charging capability and feature wheelbases ranging from 133.7 to 122 inches in length. Development of these three vehicles will take place in a new facility in China, which will also house Lotus Technology, a subsidiary launched to speed up the development of battery and energy management, electric motors, electronic control systems, and manufacturing processes. A new manufacturing plant in Wuhan, China will open at the end of 2021 to complement the two sites in the United Kingdom.
Sports car development will remain in the United Kingdom. The Type 135 and another vehicle codeveloped with Alpine will be among the first vehicles on Lotus’ Esports platform, which will accommodate two-seat and 2+2 vehicles. That platform will have a wheelbase ranging from 97.2 to 104.3 inches. Two-seat models will have their batteries behind the passenger compartment as a chest layout while the 2+2s will have floor-mounted packs. They’ll be using either an eight-module 66.4-kWh battery pack or a 12-module 99.6-kWh pack depending on the wheelbase of the vehicle. Single-motor cars will be good for up to 469 hp while the dual-motor ones will have up to 871 hp.
As with its previous internal combustion engines, Lotus will focus on keeping its vehicles light and nimble as it moves toward full electrification. The new Esports platform, for example, has a rear end that’s 37 percent lighter than the underpinnings of the Emira, Lotus’ final gas-powered vehicle. The brand also intends to continue working with other automakers in vehicle development with the first being the collaboration with Alpine. Lotus Engineering will be responsible for offering the brand’s platforms to third-party clients like other vehicle manufacturers.