Lotus has partnered with Brit Award-nominated music producer Patrick Patrikios to develop a range of sounds for the all-electric Evija hypercar.
Patrikios, who has written and produced for Britney Spears, Pixie Lott, Olly Murs and Sia, amongst others, and worked on Hollywood movie soundtracks, looked to the iconic Type 49 race car for sonic inspiration.
“We wanted to create a soundscape for the Evija that was recognisably and distinctively Lotus,” said Patrikios, himself an Evora driver. “Something intrinsically connected to Lotus, so we could set an audio blueprint for its future electric cars.”
On the choice of the Lotus Type 49 as a starting point for the hypercar sound signature, he says: “There’s a purity to that V8, a raw edge and an emotion that stirs something in your soul, just like the best songs.”
“We wanted to create a soundscape for the Evija that was recognisably and distinctively Lotus…”
The Lotus Type 49 won on its first Formula 1 outing, the 1967 Dutch Grand Prix, with legendary driver Jim Clark at the wheel. A Type 49 was on pole position at every race for the rest of the season. The following year Graham Hill won the F1 Drivers’ Championship in a Type 49.
Only 12 were ever made. The Type 49 was the first to use the all-new Lotus-developed Cosworth-Ford DFV engine that would dominate the Formula 1 grid for more than a decade, and it also marked the first appearance of the iconic red, white and gold colours of Lotus sponsor Gold Leaf, one of the most recognisable motorsport liveries of all time.
Patrikios digitised the sound of a Type 49, slowing the engine note down to create a similar frequency to the natural driving sound produced by the Evija’s advanced all-electric drivetrain.
“I adjusted the replay speeds and digital filtering of the Type 49 to generate a soundscape for the Evija, it was a very organic process. We all wanted something to spark an emotional connection between car and driver. Sound is hugely influential when it comes to creating and forming emotions, to enrich that bond that’s such a critical part of the Lotus experience.”
Not only did the music producer craft the Evija’s external noise, reflecting the hypercar’s 0-186mph in under nine seconds acceleration, but he has also developed chimes and tones for everything from the activation of the indicators to the seatbelt warning.
“I love that the sound from one of the most iconic Lotus race cars of all time has been the inspiration for its newest. There’s a symmetry to it which is beautiful.”
The all-electric Evija hypercar was recently recognised in the International Design Awards (IDAs), winning the Product Design of the Year category.
The panel jury, representing Architecture, Fashion, Interior, Product and Graphic Design disciplines, declared that the Evija “paves a way towards a more sustainable future whilst embodying an exceptional aerodynamic aesthetic”, and that “its seductive style elevates the Evija to be the world’s most premium sustainable car”.