The Europa now produces over 400hp thanks to a high-boost ECU map. Accompanying that extra power are braking, suspension, and tire improvements. Hofmann’s first tested the new setup last week and indicates results will be promising.
The Lotus Europa development
In the move to GT Cup there have been a raft of changes to improve the Europa’s performance to achieve parity with the strong GT opposition from the likes of Corvette, Dodge, Lamborghini, Porsche and Ferrari. Importantly, the engine power has increased to over 400bhp through improvements to the turbocharger system in collaboration with TDI plc. in Thurrock.
The extensive increase in both torque and power output has required some other compensation in transmission and braking areas, which, together with the switch to Pirelli slicks, has made a striking performance improvement. Hofmann’s technical partner, Nitron racing, have developed new improved suspension uprights and brake disk bells to compliment this package, allowing the car to run lower to the ground, increasing the aerodynamic download and also improving the cars stopping potential.
These changes have not compromised the famous agility demonstrated in all Lotus models. Data gained from the first runs in testing suggests that the additional power has actually increased the aerodynamic effect of the Reverie produced wing and underfloor by a large margin.
The Europa’s on track performance in terms of its road holding and braking is legendary and Chris Randall’s extensive racing results in the Elise Trophy has given him the inspiration to make an impact in GT Cup.
When asked about the Viper / Corvette / Porsche RSR competition in GT Cup, all with significantly higher power outputs, Chris said,
The Hofmann’s Europa is a project I had in mind to explore the performance ceiling of this immensely capable Lotus design. Its agility and braking capacity is in no way reduced by the additional engine power and the Pirelli slicks have delivered another dimension in corner adhesion.
The benefits will be immediately available to our performance clients in terms of accessibility to the experience we have gained over the past year and we would welcome interest from other potential GT Cup entrants to either prepare or run their cars.
The Hofmann’s Lotus Europa team
Chris Randall has an extensive race winning history in the Elise Trophy / Lotus on track Racing Drivers Club (LOTRDC) as well as his inclusion in the Lotus team in British GT entries.
The experience gained by Hofmann’s in AMOC, Group C with the Momo Nissan and Britcar races was underlined by a 10 race end to end series of race wins in their first season in 2007.
The following year saw a further 9 race wins in the Elise and accordingly the rapid rise in Lotus owners interest in acquiring some of this hard won expertise. It has expanded the race team numbers for the GT Cup to 5
Chris Randall — Hofmanns Driver and Entrant
Phillip Stickland — Chief Engineer
Lee Millard — 1st Mechanic
Mark Tapscott — 2nd Mechanic
Sam Borgman — Engine and data engineer
Nitron has been a long-term partner in the Hofmann’s Lotus business and competition success story.
Their contribution in terms of the damping and braking performance found in all Hofmann’s installed components has had a significant effect on Lotus owners appreciation of their cars.
The agreement to cover a Hofmann’s inspired range of highly advanced components for all Lotus cars will take effect from the end of 2009 and potential clients and their cars are welcome to visit the new workshop and showroom facilities to see the full range and explore the possibilities to improve their on track performance.
TDI plc. have been key partners in the Europa project and have pioneered the use of the superb Solaris ECU to great effect. Their technical knowhow and knowledge of turbo control systems has been fundamental in the Europa’s on track performance and reliability. In conjunction with TDI, Hofmann’s will be bringing a range of high performance Europa products to market so our customers can upgrade their own cars to enjoy race winning performance. Also expect developments on the Toyota engined Lotus variants coming from this partnership in the future.
Reverie have designed and recently delivered some high quality carbon work for the GT Cup Europa and further customer offerings in this area will be announced in 2010.
Pro-Alloy have played an important part in the Europa project too and their fabrication expertise can be seen on many parts of the car. Heat is the biggest enemy of turbocharged cars and on the Europa we have utilised radiator cores and turbo chargecooler systems developed by Pro-Alloy to combat this. Pro-Alloy offer a range of Lotus and Vauxhall VX220 upgrades which are all available for fitment at Hofmann’s.
The braking power of the Europa is aided immeasurably by the inclusion of sintered brake friction material produced by Carbon Lorraine. Their unique material has been refined through a joint development program with Hofmann’s and we now offer Lotus specific brake pads which are market leading in terms of performance.
The final part of the equation is the collaboration with Chris Tullet exhaust in Aylesbury. Along with developing the race winning exhaust package for the Europa, Hofmann’s/Tullet’s have also developed a range of performance exhaust to suit Elise/211 and VX220 variants.
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