Lotus Driving Academy relaunches - book now for sessions starting next month

Lotus Driving Academy relaunches - book now for sessions starting next month

Posted 20 May, 2022 at 12:00

Author Mark Bradshaw on behalf of (IFM) Independent Forecourt Magazine


One of the UK’s best-known track experience days, the Lotus Driving Academy (LDA), is relaunching, offering customers the chance to get behind the wheel of the thrilling all-new Lotus Emira.

The completely revamped programme is the next exciting project delivered by Lotus Advanced Performance, the bespoke vehicle and experiential division launched earlier this year.

LDA sessions start on 22 June and will run on a Thursday, Friday and Saturday three weeks out of every four on the iconic 2.2-mile test track at Hethel, the home of Lotus since 1966. The booking platform is now live at https://www.lotuscars.com/en-GB/driving-academy

Simon Lane, Director, Lotus Advanced Performance, commented: “Relaunching the Lotus Driving Academy for the UK’s warmer summer months has been a top priority for the team. With the all-new Lotus Emira sports car now in production, it means we can support owners and fans in getting the most from what is a sensational car to drive.”

Initially three distinct LDA courses will be available:

  • A Taste of Lotus – a 20-minute drive in an Emira on the full Hethel test track. Guided from the passenger seat by a highly experienced professional instructor, this course is aimed at those who want to experience or gift the chance to drive a Lotus Emira in a truly iconic location.
  • Introduction to Sports Cars – a full-day programme, guests will have 2 x 20 minutes of driving with a professional instructor on the test track, understanding basic sports car control and the Emira’s different drive modes. That’s followed by a guided Hethel factory tour, which includes access to the Chapman Production Centre where the Emira is built. Guests will also see other parts of the Norfolk site which have benefited from a £100million upgrade as part of the transformation of Lotus into a global performance car brand. The day is completed with a tour of Classic Team Lotus to see its unique collection of historic Lotus race cars.
  • Tailor-made Advanced – with a 3-to-1 ratio of guests to instructors, this tailored course will help drivers achieve their personal goals through the use of skills training including slalom, oversteer and understeer activities. The course runs over a full day, allowing guests time to learn, practise and master their new skills.

Stewart Croucher, Manager, Motorsport and Drive Programmes, Lotus, added: “Relaunching the Lotus Driving Academy has given us the chance to restructure what we offer to customers to guarantee them a fantastic experience. With three distinct packages there is something for everyone, whether you’ve never driven a sports car before or you’re an experienced racer looking to improve your lap times. That we can now include the Hethel factory and Classic Team Lotus tours is the icing on the cake for a great day out.”

Prices are £180 for A Taste of Lotus, £720 for Introduction to Sports Cars, and £960 for Tailor-Made Advanced.

And this is just the start for the LDA. The relaunch at Hethel is the first step of a three-year growth plan that will see the current USA Lotus experience centres – in Utah, Georgia and Arizona – become full LDA operations. The existing LDA in Italy, in Pavia, just south of Milan, will also relaunch with an Emira fleet. In addition, two all-new LDA teams will open in all-new locations. More details will follow closer to launch.

The relaunch of the LDA is the second experiential activity to be started at Hethel in the last two months. The first is the Hethel factory tour, as detailed above, which can be booked separately at https://www.lotuscars.com/en-GB/factory-tours

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