Lotus may cut workforce 27% in restructuring

Photo credit: BLOOMBERG

LONDON (Bloomberg) -- Group Lotus Plc, the maker of exotic British sports cars like the Elise, may reduce its workforce by 27 percent to cut costs.

As many as 325 of the 1,215 people employed at the Hethel, England-based company could lose their jobs as the manufacturer restructures, the unit of Malaysia's DRB-Hicom said today.

Compulsory job reductions might be needed, Lotus said.

"We have worked very hard to avoid the need to make the proposal, but do believe that it is now essential," Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales said in the statement.

After the cuts, "Lotus should be a leaner, more competitive organization, focusing on both producing class-leading sports cars and innovative engineering."

Unlike other major sports-car producers like Porsche, Lamborghini and Ferrari, Lotus is not part of a global automotive group.

Without that backing, the company, which provided the lightweight frame from Tesla Motors Inc.'s roadster, struggles to develop the technology to compete.

Aston Martin, which is also independent, has deepened an alliance with Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz to access technology.

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