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Lotus Elise Sprint is one hellishly lightweight sports vehicle

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Inside the new Lotus Elise Sprint cabin see exposed gear linkage

Called the Elise Sprint - reviving the "Sprint" name of old - it features a host of weight saving measures to trim mass to 798kg without fluids - 26kg lighter than standard versions of the updated vehicle. It sheds 41kg compared to the regular roadster, meaning it dry weight is now just 798kg in total.

To achieve the weight-saving made by the Elise Sprint, Lotus has applied carbon fibre to the bucket seats, access panel, roll hoop cover and engine cover. "It should weigh substantially less and, it is a fantastic achievement from Lotus in ensuring that the fully type approved new Elise now dips below the 800 kg barrier".

Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus Cars, famously said "adding power makes you faster on the straights; subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere", and Lotus continues to adhere to this maxim.

Work has been done to not just improve performance, the engine note has been the focus of Lotus engineers for the Elise Sprint 220's 1.8-litre supercharged petrol. Lotus claims it has created the best-sounding four-cylinder engine on the market and that could well be true. The exterior of the lightweight model is set apart with special alloy wheels, black trim, some stripes and "Sprint" badging. Climbing into the Lotus Elise Sprint should be easier as the door aperture has been increased by up to 10mm. The Elise Sprint's 1.6-litre outputs 149g/km of CO2, while the 1.8-litre of the Elise Sprint 220 comes in at 173g/km.

Lotus has revealed a refreshed Elise for 2017, with a new lightweight variant of its sports auto headlining the updated range that will go on sale this spring.

The new Elise Sprint goes even further. That's £5000 more than the standard "Sport" models in each case.

The Sprint's reduced weight costs, though: the standard 2017 Elise is priced from £32,300, with the Elise Sprint coming in at £37,300.

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