We preview the most important fast car to arrive at our shores since the history of fast cars
India doesn’t have a very colourful history of fast cars like the west does. We’ve always been an SUV country, but there are two things that haven’t mixed – a petrol car and an expensive SUV. There is just no demand for petrol SUVs here except for the G63 AMG, which is the best-selling Mercedes-AMG car in India. Things, however, are about to change and the car that will turn it around is the SUV we see here – the Lamborghini Urus.
The Urus is Lamborghini’s second SUV after the LM002, which came in 1986. Not many knew about it, as only a few hundreds of them were sold and you wouldn’t count it among Lamborghini’s greatest hits. Smart PR skills got the public to know a lot more about it before Lamborghini unveiled the Urus a couple of months ago, though. The idea was to make fans of the brand and critics accept the Urus well.
Lamborghini shouldn’t make an SUV, it’s not their identity.’ That thought had to be wiped out or at least diluted with a recall of that late eighties SUV, and the campaign worked. Everyone was talking about the LM002 before the Urus was unveiled and the SUV was welcomed well. Now, the Italian carmaker is all set to lick its lips at the bank.
Before we get to the cash registers though, let’s take a closer look at the new Super Sport SUV, as Lamborghini has coined it. The Urus is powered by a 4-litre twin turbo V8 engine, the same unit from the Panamera Turbo and the Cayenne Turbo. In the Urus, though, it obviously makes a lot more power and torque – 641bhp and 850Nm, a full hundred horsepower and about 80Nm more than the Porsche SUV. It’s got the same air suspension, rear wheel steering, torque vectoring rear differential and of course, the chassis, which is shared with the VW group’s other large SUV, the Audi Q7. The 8-speed automatic gearbox is the same as well, and chances are, once we get a closer look, we’ll see a lot more parts from the VW group parts bin. This has helped development to a great extent so accept excellent reliability as a by-product. But it is a Lamborghini so it must be unique right?
Since the commonalities have helped Lamborghini save considerable cost in development, a lot of the time and resources could be allocated to find the true essence of a Lamborghini in the Urus and make that character shout loud enough to make it unmistakably a produce from Sant’Agata. The speed for one will be a lot more than anything on the market. This nearly 2.2 tonne monster is said to do the 0-100kmph sprint in 3.6 seconds, 200kmph in just 12.3 seconds, and if you have a long enough unrestricted stretch of tarmac, it will tear through the wind at a VMax of 305kmph! In an SUV! The sight of a Urus embarrassing many sportscars with its ballistic performance is going to make for great YouTube videos.
The styling is like no other SUV too. It sits high up on 21 inch wheels with the option of 23 inchers too, has a wheelbase of 3003mm and the cuts and creases mask its bulk well. You may not be used to seeing four doors on a Lamborghini, so it’s essential that it doesn’t feel like a lump of cheese. The chiselled looks work well to make it feel sporty and fast, even when parked. The bonnet and lights are signature Lamborghini design as is the neatly tapering roof. The edginess of the SUV doesn’t take away from its dominating stance though. You should be scared if one creeps up in your rear view mirrors because it will most likely be the fastest thing on wheels the minute you step out of the city.
And speaking of going anywhere, the Urus comes with six drive modes – three for on-road and three for off the road. Strada, Sport and Corsa as seen on other Lamborghinis are the on-road modes, where focus is being fast enough to wet your pants. The off road modes are new – Terra, Neve and Sabbia, that translates to Land, Snow and Sand in English. With the amount of power it packs in, driving on dirt should be effortless. However, those who are willing to risk it surely must be bold.
Lamborghini expects sales to double with the SUV in its portfolio and Lamborghini India expects more than three times the growth it has seen in the past few years. For now, the first batch of 10 SUVs allotted for India has already been sold and there will be much more coming in the future. Considering that it is priced at Rs 3 crore ex-showroom, that’s already an indication of the demand of this SUV. And if you end up ticking the options box for all the features the Italians can pack in this SUV, I am not willing to predict the weight of your wallet. Then again, if you are worried about trivial things like a few extra million eroding your bank balance, you’d sensibly buy a Porsche or an Audi. Nobody needs a Lamborghini, yet everybody wants one.