「This Lotus Exige is Crazy Quick!」Light Tuning Results in a Rapid 58-Second Range Lap at Tsukuba

Published : 2021/03/28 12:18 Modified : 2021/03/28 12:18

280 horsepower and an ultra-lightweight body!


Suspension and aerodynamic tuning achieves a 58 second laptime at Tsukuba


Tsukuba Circuit time attack is always dominated by Japanese domestic tuning cars but the number of tuned European sports models is increasing. The Lotus Exige that we introduce here is one of them.



The base model is the “Cup 260” which was developed with circuit driving in mind. It is a specification that combines Toyota’s 1.8L straight-four 2ZZ with a supercharger to generate 260ps, as suggested by the car’s model naming.


A one-off original exhaust by BSK was installed. Engine management comes from a Motec M130. This raised output to 280ps. “The genuine factory ECU was broken due to electrical trouble. By introducing the Motec unit we improved performance and can get log data,” says the owner.



The wheels are Hethel by Outer Plus. They are an ultra-lightweight model designed exclusively for the Lotus Exige. Tires are Advan A050 with 245/45-16 front and 255 / 40-17 rear sizing.


The suspension is also made by Outer Plus. Dampers are a special product based on Ikeya Formula parts. The brakes are genuine factory with AP Racing calipers installed. The rotors were upgraded to Rdd to increase stopping power.



Even fully stock, the car weighs in at a featherweight 910kg. There are no driver comforts like airconditioner or audio. This car gets further weight reduction with the removal of carpeting and the passenger seat.



Both the front and rear panels are replaced with lightweight Ti Racing products. Though the engine got only light tuning upgrades, the exterior including a GT wing by Outer Plus and Difflow rear diffuser are full circuit spec aero parts.



The best time so far was 59.5 seconds. Then, with tires changed from Advan A050 in M compount to GS compound the car was able to clock a brilliant 58.846 second lap. According to the owner, temperatures were quite high on the day of the attack and if conditions were right, the time could be further improved upon. We are looking forward to see how far this car can be pushed with just light tuning work.