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BY: Bix

Lotus Esprit On Hold, Brand In Jeopardy

BAHAR!!!

As you may have heard, Lotus CEO Dany Bahar was canned back in June for either gross incompetence or embezzlement, depending on who you ask. But as it turns out, Bahar's egotistical pie-in-the-sky vision may have been one of the main forces keeping Lotus moving forwards.

With Bahar gone and the company's leadership in transition, Lotus parent DRB-Hicom has put the brakes on all future product development while they try and determine the best way to move forward. This means all six of Lotus's planned models now are in question—including, most tragically, the new Esprit. Not only was the Lotus Esprit the sexiest and fastest of the car maker's upcoming models, it was also the furthest along in development—in fact, the Esprit was expected to reach production sometime in 2013. That looks pretty damn unlikely now.

Only time will tell which, if any, of Lotus's future model plans wind up reaching production; people inside the company say a new business plan could be put into play within a month, so hopefully, we'll have a better sense of the brand's future by the end of the year. To be frank, Lotus's plan of building six all-new cars within five years always seemed pretty pie-in-the-sky to us, so we can't say we're surprised to see the plans fall astray...but we really hope they can at least get that Esprit out the door. [via Inside Line]

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