Drivers seeking the opportunity to experience the latest Lotus sports cars at the famed manufacturer’s facility in Norfolk, will now have the chance, with the opening of the new Lotus Driving Academy in August 2017.
From as little as £119 for the entry level experience, right through to the intensive ‘Gold’ course at £899, the Lotus Driving Academy offers a range of experiences suitable for anyone looking for a more involving and informative track session that will enhance and hone their driving skills.
Jean-Marc Gales, Chief Executive Officer of Group Lotus plc, said, “Lotus Driving Academies around the world are hugely popular, giving hundreds of people the opportunity to enjoy the pure driving experience of a Lotus sports car in a high octane environment. This popularity has meant that we already have official Lotus Driving Academies in Malaysia, the USA and France and now a new one at Hethel, the home of Lotus. Only with the Lotus Driving Academy will you get an unbeatable experience on a challenging track in some of the best giant slaying sports cars you can drive.”
The new Lotus Driving Academy at Hethel uses a fleet of the latest Exige Sport 350 and Elise Sport 220 sports cars, with left hand drive versions also available for visitors from outside the UK. The Lotus Driving Academy packages consist of The ‘Scare Yourself Sensible’ experience, ideally suited as a gift, is £119, whilst the Bronze, Silver and Gold licence days build up to obtaining the coveted Lotus Licence. These challenge even the most ardent serial track day enthusiast, with more driving time learning skills such as power oversteer and heel and toe, a personal evaluation, the option of onboard footage and exclusive merchandise to remind themselves of their day.
All Licence participants receive an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at the Lotus factory, as well as a tour of the Classic Team Lotus facility where they will see some of the cars from Lotus’ prestigious Formula 1 history, before rounding the experience off with a high-speed, on-the-limit ‘demonstration lap’ with one of the instructors. Guests of participants can also experience the tours and demonstration lap at an extra charge.
“Hethel has an extremely rich heritage and car enthusiasts will revel in the chance to learn new skills in the latest Lotus sports cars on our track where legends such as Jim Clark, Mario Andretti, Nigel Mansell and Ayrton Senna tested some of the most influential and successful F1 cars in history,” says Rupert Manwaring, Head of Motorsport, Lotus.
Emphasising the technical input rarely found with other circuit driving experiences, the Lotus Driving Academy instructor team includes former F1 driver Martin Donnelly as well as GT and BTCC drivers, ensuring that any driver will learn something new or improve on existing skills from the day.
“Customers will not only learn much more about their driving, but also a good understanding of vehicle dynamics,” says Simon Poole, from the Lotus Driving Academy. “That’s what makes us different from other experiences; you really are coming to the home of vehicle dynamics to learn via one-on-one coaching from the masters.”