Lotus plots global repositioning, steer toward China

Lynxeye Consultants will work to expand the appeal of the now Chinese-owned sports car brand.

Lotus Exige Sport 410 (Source: Lotus Cars Facebook)
Lotus Exige Sport 410 (Source: Lotus Cars Facebook)

Planning to burnish its luster in the global luxury sector and take advantage of potential in markets including China, Lotus Cars has awarded a repositioning and brand project to Lynxeye Consultants.

The consultancy, which has offices in London, Singapore and Stockholm, will work with Lotus on its global positioning while focusing on China as a key growth market for its future offerings.

China's Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (Geely) purchased 51% of the originally British brand in 2017, with Malaysia's Etika Automotive owning the rest. Geely, which also owns Volvo, was recently said to be mulling an investment of as much as $1.9bn to bolster the brand. Lynxeye also worked with Geely on repositioning Volvo and on the creation of Lynk & Co, an international car brand that will launch in 2019. 

Lucien Harrington, recently appointed managing director of Lynxeye Asia Pacific, told Campaign Asia-Pacific that Lynxeye's new Singapore office led the pitch process for the Lotus business. It will also drive the development of the global brand strategy, managing the project and coordinating with Lynxeye's European offices.

Research has already made it clear that awareness of Lotus' "storied past" exists in markets as diverse as China, Europe and the US, Harrington said. "This is a testimony to the strength of the brand, as there has not been a real focus on Asia up until this point," he added. "Our role will be to help identify the brand equities that Lotus can build on, to build a global brand that also works in China, which will be a key growth market for its expanded range of cars."

Lucien Harrington

"Lotus is an iconic brand that has become part of the lexicon of racing and performance sports cars throughout our history," Feng Qingfeng, chief executive of Lotus Cars, said in a media release. "Now is the time to build on that legacy and expand the appeal of the Lotus brand. Lynxeye understood this from our first meeting and were unique in understanding the relationship between brand, product and our business potential around the world."

Christian Ihre, co-founder and chief executive of Lynxeye, said the consultancy will be able to deliver "seamless solutions" that ensure Lotus resonates across Europe, Asia and the Americas.

A version of this story was first published by Campaign Asia-Pacific

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