By on October 8, 2019

After taking a look around the loftiest of automotive landscapes and reading a few tea leaves, Lamborghini seems close to signing off on a model that won’t have reviewers searching for exhaust note adjectives. There won’t be any use for them.

As European luxury marques — especially those under the Volkswagen Group umbrella — tiptoe tentatively into the EV realm, Lambo is poised to make its next introduction an eco warrior. This, of course, after the recent introduction of the Urus SUV. (Read More…)

By on August 13, 2019

Today is the second portion of the Vector story, which we began in our most recent Rare Rides post. Troubled from the start, the company underwent a hostile takeover by a firm called MegaTech, and fired its founder almost immediately.

The first MegaTech-developed product is our subject vehicle ⁠— the long and low M12. With an NAIAS debut in 1996, it seemed like Vector had a promising immediate future. Or did it?

(Read More…)

By on December 9, 2018

Pope Lamborghini

Roughly a year ago, Lamborghini customized a Huracán RWD for Pope Francis. This was not a commissioned job but a gift from the automaker to the Vatican. Tragically, His Holiness wasn’t interested in holding onto it so he could more easily cruise for babes and Catholic Church decided the best course of action would be to auction the vehicle off for charity.

While sold by Sotheby’s in Monaco last May for 715,000 euros (about $813,000 USD), it would appear the final bidder either didn’t have the necessary funds or experienced a change of heart. Maybe it was divine intervention. Regardless, the Huracán is now being raffled off for ten bucks a ticket — though you can choose do donate more and better your chances.

Even if you aren’t of the faithful, ten dollars for a nearly new supercar that has been blessed and signed by one of God’s favorite people feels like a bargain. Imagine the stellar track times you could achieve with the Almighty by your side and the Pope’s name scrawled on your dashboard.  (Read More…)

By on November 21, 2018

Lamborghini has talked a lot about electrification over the last few years, remaining careful never to commit to anything. While meager production rates seriously limit the environmental impact of its vehicles, the Italian automaker is nonetheless subject to the same pressure to go green as larger brands. Almost a decade ago, the brand vowed to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions of its vehicles by roughly one third while simultaneously covering the factory roof with solar panels. It later hinted it might implement widespread turbocharging, much like Ferrari, or go the electrification route.

The greenwashing trend continues today, likely encouraged by Lamborghini’s suddenly eco-conscious parent, Volkswagen. Facing an important crossroad, and surrounded by regulatory and environmental pressures, the company has chosen its path. While Lamborghini’s Stefano Domenicali still seems gently apprehensive, the CEO claims plug-in hybrids will be the best way forward for the brand.   (Read More…)

By on June 30, 2018

Lamborghini Terzo Millennio

Lamborghini is allegedly working on a limited-edition vehicle based loosely upon the utterly spectacular Terzo Millennio concept. The hybridized hypercar, codenamed LB48H, hasn’t been shown to the public, but there was a very exclusive private event held in Italy earlier this month. There have also been posts on social media from the event that make passing mention of the model.

The LB48H is rumored to be showcased in Tokyo and New York in the weeks to come. It remains unclear if these will be also private showings, but that seems likely.  (Read More…)

By on May 7, 2018

Supercar recalls are a guilty pleasure of mine. Though they’re frequently subject to the same failings as mainstream automobiles, there is something charming about a recall announcement that only affects a dozen cars. High-end manufacturers also go to weird lengths to keep customers happy in the event of a minor issue. If you’ll recall, Bugatti promised to mobilize its team of “flying doctors” last December to schedule house calls for 47 sick Chirons because 1 percent of the total might have suffered from bad seat welds.

Last month, the National Highway Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued a similarly svelte recall on the Lamborghini Centenario. The 2017 model, built to commemorate the 100th birthday of company founder Ferrucio Lamborghini, is basically an Aventador on crack. Instead of the standard model’s 6.5-liter V12 pumping out 691 horsepower, the Centenario surpasses even the beefed up variants with its 759 hp. It also comes with exclusive bodywork that can be conservatively described as insane.

You’re probably under the assumption that the Centenario recall has to be related to the tweaked engine or unique exterior then. Nope! Lamborghini is recalling them because they need to have a sticker replaced.  (Read More…)

By on March 5, 2018

Image: 1985 Lamborghini JalpaBright red paint, an interior to hide even the largest cocaine spillage, a targa roof, and sweet deep dish aero alloys all help define the Lamborghini Jalpa as a product of its era.

It’s the one everyone forgets as their minds gravitate to the older Countach or the newer Diablo.

(Read More…)

By on January 23, 2018

Image: 1973 Alfa Romeo MontrealIn our last Rare Rides entry we had a look at the oddball little BMW Freeclimber, a Daihatsu Rugger as edited by Italian design firm Bertone. Small SUVs has never been Bertone’s forte, however. No, the most well-known Bertone designs fall into the sports coupe category.

And here’s a prime example — the Alfa Romeo Montreal.

(Read More…)

By on January 11, 2018

2020 Porsche Mission E Concept - Image: Porsche

Porsche is apparently working on a new supercar platform for itself. However, both Audi and Lamborghini are said to be able to get in on the action, too. The platform is an entirely electric one, dubbed SPE, and it’s to be part of Volkswagen Group’s “third-wave” shift towards a fully electrified fleet.

However, the platform’s existence was only officially mentioned in VW’s capital markets presentation from November. The report shows SPE coming into play after the solidification of the initial MEB platform and the establishment of VW’s PPE (Premium Platform Electric) architecture — intended for luxury segment models after 2021. As the third phase of the group’s electrification strategy, SPE-based vehicles likely won’t enter production until 2025.  (Read More…)

By on December 5, 2017

2019 Lamborghini Urus

Back in the spring of 2012, I penned a sort of existential whine about the absolutely unnecessary idea of a Lamborghini SUV. In the five-and-a-half years since then, it’s often looked like the “Urus” would be canceled or at least shelved indefinitely — and why not? Under the protective umbrella of VW Group, Lamborghini had absolutely no need to balance the books with a Me-Too Iguana Mommytruck.

Even more importantly, the company’s core product has become absolutely first-rate. If you haven’t driven a Huracan, you owe it to yourself to at least try three rental laps in Las Vegas or elsewhere. The Huracan Performante is, quite possibly, the most exciting and emotionally involving exotic car since the demise of the Ferrari 458 Speciale, while the Aventador S neatly balances the demands of outrageousness and everyday usability.

If you’d put a Urus in showrooms next to the tired-looking-from-Day-2 Gallardo and just-a-bit-plain Murcielago, there might have been a bit of sad synergy across the product lines. Maybe. Half a decade ago, Lamborghini wasn’t second fiddle to Ferrari so much as it was the weekday shift janitor at the symphony. But now it’s Ferrari that struggles with issues of public perception and dealer gouging and unfocused product offerings while the German-Italians from Sant’Agata keep raising the bar to stratospheric levels.

The Urus will be an exception to this new tradition of excellence. It’s a deeply compromised product, a sort of mish-mash between the Audi S8 and VW Tiguan and God knows what else. Its primary competition in the marketplace will surely be the related-under-the-skin Bentley Bentayga and Porsche Cayenne, two vehicles that I suspect are made deliberately gormless for the same reason the so-called “419 scams” are so obviously fraudulent — to weed out the cognoscenti and ensure that only the least discerning customers make it through the purchase experience. It’s not good news for anybody except my colleagues at the buff books, who will have a chance to escape the winter blahs with a trip to Italy. As a genuine fan of the Lamborghini brand and lineup, however, I can’t say that I am anything other than disappointed at Lamborghini’s decision to develop and sell this product.

Which raises, for me at least, a question: How can I continue to respect Lamborghini in a world where the Urus is providing the bulk of the sales volume? The answer is simple.

(Read More…)

By on December 4, 2017

2019 Lamborghini Urus

Lamborghini unveiled the Urus SUV today at what was, quite possibly, the most over-the-top product reveal ever witnessed. There was an orchestra, modern dance routine, and rainbow-colored neon light show within the first two minutes. There was almost even a martial arts exhibition ready to break out. Clearly this was a big moment for the Italian automaker and it was more than willing to make a fuss about it.

However, before Lamborghini could get to the Urus announcement, a cavalcade of the brand’s most important models paraded out — followed by a speed skater holding an orange glow stick. Again, it was insane. Eventually the lights were reset and an extended diatribe began on the artistry and pioneering spirit of the brand’s history.

It was boring and included a hefty dollop of marketing speak about Lamborghini’s “evolution.” Then there was another ludicrous dance number, this one somehow tied to automobile production, followed by some rather serious technical difficulties with the presentation. But neither lasted forever and the Urus finally took the stage, rather modestly, to thunderous applause and cheering.  (Read More…)

By on November 22, 2017

Image: 1979 BMW M1In our last Rare Ride entry we covered the difficult conception and birth of the BMW M1 at the hands of a financially faltering Lamborghini. In Part II, we talk about the second issue BMW faced, which would ultimately alter (and shorten) the M1’s life.

(Read More…)

By on November 22, 2017

2012 Lamborghini Urus Concept - Image: Lamborghini

Eagle-eyed fans have spotted a revealing clip in a new teaser video for the upcoming Lamborghini Urus, potentially confirming the shape of the Italian company’s new machine.

In a teaser spot meant to highlight its track-focused Corsa mode, a quick shot of the infotainment display shows what appears to be the entire vehicle without any camouflage. Lamborghini quickly took down the video and reuploaded it with an edited version, but not before a couple of quick-on-the-draw Youtubers put the original video on their own accounts for the world to see.

(Read More…)

By on November 21, 2017

Image: 1981 BMW M1BMW presently sells the hybrid i8 to the eco-conscious performance driver. It is mid-engined, has butterfly doors and what have you, and it’s quite striking.

But did you know that it’s not the first mid-engine BMW? No, that title goes to our Rare Ride today — the M1, from all the way back in 1981. Don’t worry, it’s not all that Malaisey.

(Read More…)

By on November 15, 2017

Pope Lamborghini

In the car world, Pope Francis is most famous for abandoning the popemobile to drive himself around in various small hatchbacks. Perhaps thinking he was an automobile enthusiast, Lamborghini gifted him a white Huracán RWD Coupe with gold detailing to match his catholic dressings on Wednesday, just outside the Vatican hotel where he lives.

Unfortunately, while he blessed the crap out of the car, he doesn’t want to keep it. Instead, the church will auction it off to fund the Nineveh Plains Reconstruction Project — a group primarily focused on helping women who were victims of trafficking at the hands of ISIS.

While we wish they would have orchestrated a photo shoot where His Holiness performs a burnout, turning to the camera to look over a pair of wraparound sunglasses whilst uttering “Good God,” we understand he’s supposed to remain reverent — or whatever. It just seemed like a missed opportunity and could have upped the resale value of the car the pontiff laid rubber with. Besides, it would have been for a good cause.  (Read More…)

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