Lotus E20 is the most impressive 2012 car so far

Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 E20. Formula One Testing, Day 3, Jerez, Spain, Thursday 9 February 2012.

Romain Grosjean was fastest of the new car drivers in the Lotus E20 on Wednesday at Jere

Feb.10 (GMM) After step noses and clever exhausts, the latest Formula 1 buzzword in the Jerez paddock is Lotus – and their E20 in particular.

The former Renault team is turning heads with its new black and gold E20 car, which has been consistently the quickest 2012 car throughout the opening test of the pre-season.

“I am one of the happiest guys in the world right now,” said Romain Grosjean on Thursday after easily outpacing Red Bull‘s Sebastian Vettel.

The reigning GP2 champion was also quicker than the 2012 McLaren, steered for the first time on Thursday by Lewis Hamilton.

“The Lotus looks quite impressive,” said Hamilton.

Drawing conclusions based on test results is an unreliable practice, but the body language in the Lotus garage so far is confident.

“At the moment they are quicker and more consistent.

“There are more question marks about us, Ferrari and McLaren,” said Vettel.

“For the first test it looks good,” team boss Eric Boullier admitted to Finnish broadcaster MTV3, “but still you can’t really speculate on anything.

“Between here and Melbourne, all the cars will change a lot.

“It is true that today we have a good car, we are able to drive a lot of laps and that is why we are at the front,” he added.

After watching the action trackside from a corner, Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg told Auto Motor und Sport that the E20 is “a missile with an incredible amount of grip”.

“The Red Bull and the Lotus make the best impression,” agreed 1982 world champion Keke Rosberg, who is also at Jerez.

Hamilton described Grosjean’s best time – 1.18.4 – as “good”, while Red Bull’s Webber wanted to know what compound of Pirelli tyre was fitted to the Lotus.

Told it was the medium, the Australian admitted: “Then it was a very good lap.”

Grosjean smiled: “The car is easy to drive and predictable everywhere, especially in the fast corners, and when you go over the limit it is easy to get back.”

Said Webber: “If Grosjean can do those laptimes then we will all have to watch Kimi (Raikkonen).”

  • Butterfly

    Why is everybody saying the Lotus is impressive? They are obviously running low-fuel to attract sponsors, duh!

    Sauber did the same thing two years ago.

  • Ikmal

    This is just a test, not a qualifying,, So, the main focus here is to find the best setting for the car,, fast or not is not the attraction for the big name..

  • kaka007

    As a kimi fan,this is a wonderful news to here..but I know,it’s too early to look into any of these test results..I wish the very best to kimi..go iceman……….

  • grave

    @Butterfly : I think Lotus features a nice amount of sponsors on the car… I don’t that they’re running after money since Raikonnen signed the deal… raising sponsorship’s interest in the team. And we’ve heard at the end of ’11 that Kimi was backed by some Qatar’s investors… I don’t know if that’s still right since that info was hot when he was linked with a Williams drive. Time will tell…. But Lotus clearly aren’t in Sauber’s position back in ’09…

    Go Kimi!

  • kevsuths

    have to say I kinda agree with butterfly

    some of these cars could be “sand bagging” but I hope the lotus is as quick as it looks compared to the rest

    especially with Kimi at the wheel

    bring on the first race!!

  • Sennauno


    well yeah with the exit of Bruno Senna the team lost 24 sponsors :)
    would be nice if the media at Jerez would comment on the validity of all the cars times during the day…at least with respect to fuel and tyres. But i guess its good media to keep us all guessing…whos show boating and who isnt..stay tuned till the Barcelona test!

    I still say he who makes predictions in pre season testing is a brave man :)

  • Tamburello_1994

    Didn’t we here this last year? This lot, along with Toro Roso – and where did they both end up?

    Mercedes and HRT havn’t even tested their 2012 contenders yet. You never know, HRT could be the real dark horse this year. ;)

    Seriously, Got to wait to at least RACE 4 or 5 to accurately gauge the field.

  • http://Comcast.net tony sullivan

    why are all the comments negative?