Nothing quite proves the performance potential of a sports car more than the demanding Guia Circuit in Macau. With a solid 1-2 finish for the Lotus Emira GT4 in the Greater Bay Area GT4 race in the ongoing 70th Macau Grand Prix, it is safe to say that Lotus’ 75 years of motorsports heritage lives on.
Decked in the ionic Lotus black and gold livery, the two Lotus Emira GT4 cars started from P1 and P2 after dominating the qualifying session. The TORO Racing pair led the race from the start with Adam Christodoulou almost getting punted at the rear by Han Lichao’s GR Toyota Supra GT4 on the first lap.
After that near miss, Luo Kailuo in the #75 Lotus Emira GT4 then led British teammate Christodoulou over the next four laps, with the two building up a commanding 12-second lead over the third placer.
However, the race was stopped with four laps to go because of an on-track incident just before the tight Melco hairpin. Race organizers then finalized the race results based on the running order before the stoppage. Luo Kailuo takes first with a widening gap over Christodoulou, giving the Lotus Emira GT4 its first international race win on its debut in Macau.
The Lotus Emira GT4 has been homologated for competition in global GT4 classes. And because Lotus has a comprehensive options list for the car, is also eligible for other non-homologated and specialist race series around the world.
The Emira GT4 is powered by a Lotus-tuned 3.5-litre V6 with Motec engine management and a Harrop TVS 1900 supercharger. It features a Hewland six-speed sequential transmission with paddle-shift actuation and limited-slip differential. Power output is 455 bhp with 500Nm of torque, though both were reduced slightly for the Macau Grand Prix to ensure a fair race with all competitors.
TORO Racing Team Director Ringo Chong was all praises for the Emira’s advantage in the race. ”The Emira GT4's three greatest strengths in the race were: first, the center of gravity is very low, like flying on the ground; second, the car's steering is flexible, which gives the car a good advantage in the sharp corners of the Macau Grand Prix circuit; and third, we have added tuning for the city track and the mountain track to meet the demands of more intense driving.”
With this convincing victory, we wouldn't be surprised if we see more Lotus Eviras in the hands of customer teams and race drivers in various GT4 events next year.
With an automotive career spanning 27 years as a former touring car racer turned automotive journalist and photographer, Mikko also handled marketing and PR for two major Japanese car brands before finding peace and purpose in sharing his views about cars, driving, and mobility.