100 Cars That Changed History

tn_64-Blue_Lotus_EliteBlue Lotus Elite” by Alf van Beem – Own work. Licensed under CC0 via Wikimedia Commons.


64. Lotus Elite Type 14 1958-1963 United Kingdom

The Elite Type 14 was an ultra-light two-seater coupe produced by Lotus Cars from 1958-1963 and manufactured mostly by the Bristol Aeroplane Company. The car utilized a revolutionary fiberglass monocoque construction. The Elite 14 used fiberglass, a new glass-reinforced plastic material, for the exterior as well as the entire load bearing structure of the car, with the monocoque incorporating a steel beam to support the engine and front suspension. The car weighed in at only 1,110lbs (503.5 kg) and had a sleek, aerodynamic body designed to reduce air resistance. The Elite Type 14 has a drag coefficient of 0.29, which is good even by today’s standards. That’s really impressive considering they didn’t have the modern computers and wind tunnel testing that companies utilize today.


Share This Post