We’ve seen automotive brands make production versions of concepts or prototypes, even after decades of hibernation. Likewise, continuation cars are ever-popular in today’s market for their nostalgic angle and pure novelty. Lotus is taking all that one step further with its latest Type 66, simply because the model it’s based on was never made to begin with.
Discovered in an archival vault owned by the son of Lotus founder Clive Chapman, the drawings and sketches for the Type 66 were helmed by Chapman in hopes to compete with the likes of McLaren and Lola in the Canadian-American Challenge Cup (Can-Am). Drawn up by Geoff Ferris of Team Lotus, the drafts date back to September 1969 and would have likely seen the vehicle come to fruition by the 1970 season. However, the burgeoning Formula One began to occupy most of Lotus’ time and energy — fortunately resulting in a big-time win in 1972 — and the project was abandoned.
Fast forward 53 years and now Lotus has decided to honor those original sketches. Made to be a track-only vehicle, the Type 66 will be limited to just 10 examples. Colored in red, white, and gold, with the number 66 on the hood and livery, the car looks very much of its time, as are its period-correct side-mounted radiators, rear wing, and mid-mounted V8 push-rod engine with air intake trumpets inspired by the Can-Am. Sourced externally, the powertrain will be tuned by Lotus for over 819hp and 550lb.ft of torque. It also boasts a downforce of more than 1,764lbs at full speed, which exceeds the vehicle’s weight. Newer tech will include an aluminum forged crank, rod, and pistons, electric power steering, a sequential racing gearbox, a race ABS braking system, and a carbon fiber body shell.
If you want your chance at owning the Type 66, you’d better have £1 million (~$1.3 million) lying around — and be one of the first 10 to register interest. Head over to Lotus’ website to learn more.