This week’s significant anniversaries


The following statement is from Matt Windle, Group Vice-President and Managing Director, Lotus Cars.

“For everyone at Lotus, 16 December 2022 will be a significant day of reflection – 40 years since Colin Chapman, our founder, died at the age of just 54.

“And it was just a year ago, on 13 December 2021, that Hazel Chapman, his widow, died. As many tributes have been paid to Hazel, she has been rightly recognised for the role she played in the genesis and development of Lotus and her legacy in terms of both the sports car business and the illustrious F1 era when Team Lotus dominated. We are remembering both Hazel and Colin this week.

“The Lotus of today is a fitting tribute to the legacy of both. I was privileged to stand with Clive Chapman, their son, and other members of the Chapman family, to name our newest assembly area the Chapman Production Centre in May this year. It’s part of a £100m investment in our UK facilities and a fitting tribute to our founding family. There is so much of the storied history and pioneering success of Lotus associated with the Hethel site. It’s been the home of Lotus since 1966 and the Chapmans’ passion is engrained in the walls.

“Colin Chapman was a visionary engineer and leader, and many of the innovations that he and his team developed are the reason why motoring and motorsport are as they are today.

“His maverick, rebellious spirit and ingenuity are alive and well in Lotus. Just look at the three cars we’ve unveiled in the last three years – Evija, the world’s most powerful production car with arguably one of the most advanced automotive designs ever; Emira, our last petrol car and unquestionably our best of breed; and Eletre, the world’s first hyper-SUV that takes our brand in an exciting new direction.

“Lotus is transforming, from a UK sports car company to a global performance business and brand. I think Colin Chapman would be proud and excited by that and, for all of us at Lotus, his legacy lives on through the innovation and ambition driving our future.”