Lotus Elise E01 engine display 4

This Lotus Elise Series 1 was put on display at Proton’s Centre of Excellence during the company’s announcement of its new engine programme. Unlike the standard car, the Elise seen here packs a Petronas-derived E01e engine, which is said to form the basis of the NE01 engine that is due on the new Perdana by end-2017.

Pop the hood of this Elise, and you’ll find a E01e 2.0 litre in-line four-cylinder petrol engine that features an aluminium block, continuous control variable valve timing (VVT) and double overhead camshafts (DOHC). Power is rated at 204 PS at 7,300 rpm and 203 Nm at 5,300 rpm.

Lotus Elise E01 engine display 10

The E01 engine has had a long history, with the project first kicking off in March 1997. With applied knowledge gained from Petronas’ experience in Formula 1, the engine was first fired up on February 20, 1998. Shortly after, the engine made its way into two test mules, a Proton Waja and a Satria GTi, before the Elise received its own.

In 2012, it was reported that Proton had acquired all of Petronas’ engine technologies along with other patents for RM63 million. This gave Proton ownership of a family of normally-aspirated engines and turbocharged engines. The engines were meant to be configurable in three displacements (1.8, 2.0 and 2.2 litres), although the E01e was the only engine revealed to date.