Porsche did it. Bentley did it. Range Rover really did it. Now Lamborghini is gearing up to introduce its third model to the world in the form of a big fast all-wheel-drive “sport” SUV that may very well betray the company’s V12 roots.
According to the fine fellows over at Autocar, Chief executive Stephan Winkelmann and R&D boss Maurizio Reggiani “confirmed” that a twin-turbo V8 powerplant is indeed in the works for their new sport SUV slated for 2018, likely based off of the Urus concept.
The Italian company’s first 4x4 since the LM002 will eschew the naturally aspirated V10 and V12 units which power the current Huracan and Aventador sports cars in favour of a twin-turbocharged eight-cylinder unit with a cubic capacity of 4.0 litres.
While there is no direct quote from anyone at Lamborghini specifically saying the words “twin-turbo V8,” the possibility of a turbo V8 engine has been brought up to us before, and it makes sense to have a powerplant capable of a lot of torque for the “Utility,” and a lot of high end power coming from the addition of two turbochargers for the “Sport” part of Raging Bull’s SUV.
Update: We reached out to Lamborghini and they confirmed that the twin-turbo V8 will be the powerplant when the car goes into production in 2018.
Reggiani said: “In acceleration and in off-road capability it is really important to have a high level of torque, in order to move as quickly as possible and in an off-road situation to have the ability to come out of a critical situation easily. We decided that a turbo for a super sport SUV is the best choice. The engine must be light and powerful and with the capability with this torque at low revs to allow the car to be ‘elastic’ in every type of condition.”
The engine would be unique only to Lamborghini when it’s introduced, and Autocar reports that an early model with the twin-turbo V8 is already running tests and impressing alongside it’s high-end luxury rivals, including the new Bentley Bentayga with which the Lamborghini will share similar underpinnings.
The pointy angular motion-machine is said to resemble the Urus concept SUV from 2012, and is being designed initially to be compatible with the battery pack and electric motors of a hybrid set up, though a hybrid drive-train reportedly wont be available when the car goes on sale. The SUV is also destined to be all-wheel-drive only, despite the recent rear-wheel-drive Huracan variant.
Autocar also claims that we can expect a hardcore variant, as well as a more luxury-oriented edition of the SUV once it goes on sale.
The shift from a two-digit cylinder engine doesn’t seem to unsettle the brand moving forward, with Winkelmann quoted as saying:
“It will be a true Lamborghini because it will be the fastest among the SUVs. We will have the most powerful engine and will have the car that is going to be a real super sports SUV. It has to keep the balance between matching the DNA of the brand, that is being a car that is really driveable and also have a lot of off-road capability, but the driving on the roads is much more important.”
Expect to see the finished product at either the Geneva or Frankfurt motor-show in late 2017, or early 2018.
Contact the author at email@example.com or @WestbrookTweets.