I wasn’t really sure where to put this; I was sure I’d made a thread on it earlier in the year (or at the end of last year) when I first found out about it, but I have since been proven wrong. I figure that this is the best place for it to go, since the R-GT regulations were designed for the WRC, and not the IRC.
Anyway, during Dany Bahar’s rapid and unsustainable expansion of Lotus Cars into as many forms of motorsport as he could think of, the company announced that they were developing the Exige R-GT, a rally car intended for the new R-GT regulations that will allow GT cars to take part in rallies from 2013. Most people scoffed at the notion, and the project seemingly vanished not long after as the team grabbed headlines for all the wrong reasons with the farce that was their Indycar project and Bahar being fired.
But the project was never cancelled, and Lotus pressed on at full steam ahead. Their original plan was to appear on all of the tarmac rallies on the WRC calendar once the car was homologated, but they have never so much as entered a rally, much less shown up for one. But the project never died, and last month, the car made its debut at the Rally Vinho da Maderira. The car retired on the first day when a glitch in the gearbox software saw the car seize up and crash, but the team will be back for a private test in Italy at the end of this month and then enter the Rally Príncipe de Asturias in mid-September.