As you read this story, remember that the voting was done by readers of Autocar magazine, the respected British magazine that covers the global auto industry and likely has lots of Brits among those voting.
Oh, yes, the voting: The Lotus Elise was voted the Readers’ Champion award on a ballot that included 17 automotive icons that are still in production.
“Readers chose the Elise for its unwavering emphasis on driving factors: fine steering, handling and brakes made more effective by its compactness and light weight,” Autocar editor Mark Tisshaw was quoted in the news release. “For the record, we at Autocar enthusiastically applaud the decision.”
Other cars nominated for the award were the Lotus Seven, BMW 3 Series, Fiat 500, Ford Mustang, Jaguar XJ, Jeep Wrangler, Land Rover, Mazda MX-5 Miata, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, Mini, Nissan Skyline, Porsche 911, Ranger Rover, Suzuki Jimmy, Toyota Corolla and Volkswagen Beetle.
“The Elise as a concept demonstrated the purity of Lotus design perfectly,” responded Russell Carr, Lotus design director. “As a design, it has developed and evolved over the years, but the essence of the Elise has always remained and that is one of the reasons why it has become such an icon.”
“The Elise was a revolution, “ added Richard Rackham, former chief engineer, “as not only did it demonstrate the benefits of light weight to an industry that insisted on higher power and the increased mass that goes with it, but it also pioneered the use of extruded and bonded aluminum technology which is now so ubiquitous in global small-volume vehicle manufacture.”
Considering that same list of nominees, which car would receive your vote? You can use the “Leave a Comment” box below to share your selection.