Sports car made to be greener

Lotus has developed a special green edition of its Elise sports car, the “Eco Elise”, using natural materials

, and exhibited it in the Greener Driving Pavilion at the British International Motor Show in July and August 2008.
Hemp, wool and sisal have been used in body panels and trim, and combined with water-based paint. Hemp technical fabrics have been used in the “A” class composite body panels and spoiler, in conjunction with polyester to form a hybrid composite. The seats are upholstered in wool and sisal has been used for the carpets. The hard top is made of hemp, and two solar panels have been integrated into the roof. The hemp fibres were grown locally in East Anglia. In addition, a green gear change display has been integrated into the dashboard to promote greener driving and the car has been made to weigh 32kg less than the standard Elise S.
Improvements to the culture and operations at Lotus’s headquarters at Hethel have resulted consumption of 14% less electricity, 30% less gas, and 11% less water. 57% of waste products are now recycled.

Tom Shelley

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