No more combustion engines: Lamborghini's new electric sports car will be a GT
Created: 09/23/2022, 16:30
By: Rudolf Boegel
Christiano Ronaldo has one, Franck Ribery has one.
Lamborghinis are the status symbol of the stars.
Even in the electric age?
Little quiz: Who is more profitable than Porsche and was still making tractors in the early 1960s?
Car lovers have the right answer ready, pronto and, above all, presto.
Lamborghini is heading for a delivery record this year and only built its first sports car in 1964 with the 350 GT.
At that time already with a twelve-cylinder engine.
There are numerous stories and rumors about how the agricultural machinery manufacturer became a horsepower forge.
Perhaps the most beautiful: Because Feruccio Lamborghini always had problems with his Ferrari, he complained to Enzo Ferrari personally.
In the ensuing battle of words, the "commendatore" is said to have said that Lamborghini had no idea because he can only build tractors.
The answer was not long in coming.
With the 350 GT, agricultural machinery manufacturer Lamborghini sent its first sports car onto the road in the 1960s.
Maybe that's why this rural advertising backdrop.
Almost 10,000 Lambos will be delivered this year
The change from bulldog farmer to sports car manufacturer was undoubtedly a major challenge.
Lamborghini faces at least one equally demanding task today: No more combustion engines from 2035 – what should the super sports car of the future look like and how do you want to continue the success story that is currently reaching its peak?
"We are expecting the best year in the company's history," says Lamborghini boss Stephan Winkelmann in an interview.
In figures, this means that sales increased by 33 percent in the first half of the year, and profitability is said to be even higher than that of Porsche (but still lower than that of Ferrari).
And for the first time, just under 10,000 cars will be delivered in 2022.
More and more, ever younger customers, all well-heeled, of course, want the sports car with the bull logo.
The lion's share goes to the USA (2,700), but then China follows with around 1,000 copies.
Thanks be to Urus - because the SUV sells particularly well there.
About half of the delivered Lambos are Urus.
Red leather and a lot of noble chrome.
The first sports cars from Lamborghini, the 350 and 400 GT, were luxuriously equipped, befitting their status and the times.
Aventador comes with a twelve-cylinder naturally aspirated engine and an electric motor
But what's next for the premium brand from Sant'Agata Bolognese?
Because the customers are young and want more sustainability.
Today, on average, they are in their mid-40s, but according to market analyzes they will be under 40 by 2025. This also means for super sports cars: hybrid drive.
The Aventador will start next year.
It is rolling out as a plug-in hybrid, but befittingly combined with a twelve-cylinder naturally aspirated engine.
Huracan and Urus will switch to dual propulsion in 2024.
"As long as possible," says Winkelmann when asked when the last combustion engine will be removed from a Lambo.
So up to and including 2036 (small manufacturers have a one-year delay), if necessary also with e-fuels.
At the same time, Lamborghini wants to put a real electric car on the road.
A terribly fast family.
Lamborghini crowns the Huracan series with the special models Tecnica and STO.
© Luca Riva / Lamborghini
And this is what the fourth Lamborghini model should look like
It is ominously referred to as the fourth model after the Aventador, Huracan and Urus.
And it will be a GT, as Winkelmann reveals: “If we compare ourselves to other manufacturers in the segment, the GT is the only car that is still missing.
And we have expertise with the GT.” The 350 and 400 GT were the first sports cars that Lamborghini built after the many tractors.
Such specimens are traded today with prices well over 300,000 euros.
Model 4 will be a 2+2 seater "with a new design language and a little more ground clearance," says Winkelmann.
Which is logical because the batteries are usually installed in the underbody.
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Maybe it's going in the direction of a shooting break, it definitely won't be a station wagon.
In any case, you can be curious about the sound of the car.
"We will not imitate the combustion engine, but the car will still sound emotional, just like a Lamborghini." Performance is not an issue with an electric car, says Winkelmann.
“In terms of longitudinal dynamics, an electric car is hard to beat.” Lateral acceleration needs to be sharpened.
Electric vehicles are notoriously a bit cumbersome due to their heavy weight.
To make it "light-footed", as it should be for a super sports car, that is the great technical challenge.
Lamborghini LM002 had a befitting twelve-cylinder under the hood with up to 455 hp.
Well-preserved copies cost around 400,000 euros today.
Urus Performante: 666 hp, 3.3 seconds from 0 to 100
But that's still a long way off - initially everything will stay with the combustion engine.
The bestseller Urus will be available in a particularly sporty version this fall.
The hot part is called Urus Performante.
The super SUV will be flatter, wider and lighter.
It has lost 47 kilograms compared to the normal model, but the performance of the V8 engine has been increased to 666 hp.
And while we're on the subject of schnapps numbers: That's 3.3 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h.
Almost 10,000 deliveries, half of which were the Urus.
Stephan Winkelmann, CEO at Lamborghini, expects a record result this year.
Here he is in front of the brand new Urus Performante.
The Urus Performante showed what you can do with it at the legendary Pikes Peak in the USA.
After 10:32.064 minutes, he crossed the finish line at an altitude of 4,302 meters, beating the Bentley Bentayga's record by more than 17 seconds.
Wider and flatter – Lamborghini chief designer Mitja Borkert underlined this visually, also through the generous use of carbon fibers.
Even the roof is available in this material, reminiscent of the Huracán Performante and Super Trofeo.
The forefather of the Urus came onto the market under the name LM002.
The design father of today's Lambos is Mitja Borkert, here in front of the historic Lambo.
Lamborghini design: expect the unexpected
And the Y headlights also show that this Urus is also a real Lambo.
"Lamborghinis are iconic vehicles that look like spaceships," says chief designer Mitja Borkert during the conversation in Munich.
“The design must always be surprising.
We say: Expect the Unexpected.
Expect the unexpected.” Just like the company's history.
Who would have expected that Lamborghini would build the most coveted sports cars in the world alongside tractors?