Arnie Tribute 10

Arnie Johnson Tribute No. 10

By Luke Bennett- Operations Director of Lotus Cars

Morris Dowton- Ret ired Lotus Cars execut ive and Historic Lotus Publisher
Roger Becker- Project Engineering Director at Lotus for 43 years
Clive Dopson- Engineering Consu ltant f rom Norwich
Mark Vinnels- Executive Director of Engineering at Rivian Automotive
Mike Kimberly- CEO Lotus

I first met Arnie through an introduction at Potash Lane from my very good friend and mentor, Morris Dowton (Mo). I saw him as a man who was at ease with the task of looking after the US market and a really easy get to get along with. As I grew with company I once again had reason to work with Arnie. Myself, Roger Becker (RIP}, Clive Dopson and Mark Vinnels (RIP) worked ‘with Arnie and the shareholders to make the case for the Federal Elise using the Toyota 2ZZ engine. This car now goes down in the history books …. ! Later in my career, under tl1e sponsorship of Mike Kimberley in his second tour, and with Roger Becker, we kicked off the Evora. I visited Arnie in the US more than once and as ever Arnie was a real friend. I enjoyed dinner with his family and sitting in his garage talking through sales in the USA mixed with tinkering with his Norton Commando motorcycle. Like so many people mentioned here, a true Lotus cornerstone with which I am proud to have worked with. All that I learned at Lotus with these great people I use over and over again in my role as Executive Director Of Manufacturing at Mclaren Automotive. Rest In Peace Arnie – one of the Lotus greats.

Luke Bennett