Under normal circumstances, I would never accept wholesale a tagline from a car manufacturer. Here’s the thing, though: the Lamborghini brand is extreme, it is uncompromising and, of course, it is Italian. But what does that all really mean?
Last year, the company celebrated its 50th anniversary and did so with expected fanfare. One of the highlights was the unveiling of two limited-edition models, the Aventador LP 720-4 50° Anniversario and the Veneno, a more powerful variation of the Aventador that had a total production run of just three examples. All were silver, but each had a distinct colour stripe: red, white, and green. They cost €3-million each, and they sold in an instant.
In 2008, I attended my first Lamborghini global press launch. The car being introduced was the then-latest version for the Gallardo, the LP 560-4. The setting was Las Vegas; this city, it must be said, is as brand-appropriate as they come. For the event, Lamborghini constructed a temporary building in the parking lot of the Luxor hotel. Inside, there was a wide, rectangular, white lacquer dining table long enough to seat 25 guests per side. In between courses, a series of gorgeous fashion models walked up and down the dining table—yes, the table itself—showcasing the then-latest examples from the Lamborghini clothing collection. But this was just the kick-off. The next morning, suffering from severe lack of sleep, the horde of automotive journalists convened at McCarran International Airport to be flown by a fleet of Lamborghini-branded helicopters to Las Vegas Motor Speedway (just a 20-minute drive from the Luxor). This was where we had our first chance to sample the Gallardo LP 560-4 in anger.
Of course, the entire affair was over the top—but “over the top” could be a synonym for extreme, Italian, and uncompromising. It was also, more or less, unnecessary: for the true car enthusiast, the only thing needed to create a successful Lamborghini press event is access to a Lamborghini.
The drive at Las Vegas Motor Speedway was, without question, a thrilling one. But so, too, were subsequent meetings with other models on Tenerife (the Gallardo LP 560-4 Spyder), in Andalusia (the Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera), at corporate headquarters (the Aventador LP 700-4), and in Miami (the Aventador LP 700-4 Roadster). Every single encounter resulted in, at minimum, one unforgettable moment.
The current fleet of Lamborghinis is a desirable collection, and it’s set to become even more compelling. The Aventador, in both coupe and roadster form, continues on untouched for 2014. While this may not seem like news, this Lamborghini is the spiritual successor to the most extreme, Italian and uncompromising Lamborghini of all time, the Countach. Of course, a car is destined to inherit this mantle when it comes equipped with a deafening V12 engine and design features seemingly inspired by the Eurofighter Typhoon jet airplane.
In “new” news, this year will see the arrival of a replacement for the Gallardo, the best-selling Lamborghini of all time. The production version of the Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 is set to be unveiled at this year’s Geneva Motor Show and the early pictures of the car look spectacular. The new shape maintains the essential angularity of the Gallardo, but incorporates influences from the Aventador in a particularly effective fashion.
The sharper silhouette, combined with a 5.2-litre V10 engine that produces 50 more horsepower than it ever did in the Gallardo, promise to make the Huracán a big deal in the supersports segment. Toss in a new dual-clutch automatic transmission and a cockpit also inspired by the jet fighter-like Aventador, and this latest Lamborghini will, no doubt, be a fitting successor to a wonderful car.
Further down the road, we will see an SUV from Lamborghini (the Urus has been promised for 2017), and any number of limited-edition models. We will also likely see more bikinis, worn by gorgeous fashion models, emblazoned with the company’s raging bull logo. And what could be more brand appropriate than that?