FUTURE MODELS: Take on Italy with the top down
AS THE motoring world is still reeling from the introduction of the Lamborghini Aventador Coupe last year, the Sant’ Agata Bolognese, Italy-based company this week unveiled an open-top variant in the form of the Roadster.
With more than 1,300 units of the coupe already delivered to customers, the roadster version arguably ups the desirability ante to another level and will likely attain an even higher sales figure than its tin-top sibling by virtue of it removable roof.
While the company was rather adamant at the time of the coupe’s launch that there were no plans of a roadster version of the Aventador, the one-off J concept shown at this year’s Geneva Motorshow certainly hinted at the likelihood of a full production Roadster.
The Aventador’s lineage includes the likes of the Miura, Espada, Countach, Diablo and Murcielago. It can be argued that the Countach singlehandedly changed the landscape of super sports cars, particularly from an extreme design point of view.
It was unequivocally one of the more prominent poster cars that adorned many a young boy and girl’s bedroom wall in the mid 1980s. One thing that was familiar across the aforementioned models was their V12 engine configuration, which remains in the Aventador coupe and now the Roadster version, too.
Offered with a two-piece roof made entirely from carbon fibre and weighing a meagre 6kg each, it is said to offer maximum aesthetics and aerodynamic performance without compromising on structural integrity. The two parts are removable and can be stored in the front luggage compartment when not in use.
Meanwhile, the rear pillar has been redesigned to offer total support for the removable roof, accommodate an automatic protection system for passengers and provide the engine compartment with sufficient ventilation.
The interior has a new look too, with the use of leather called Sabbia Nefertem, which highlights the hand-made craftsmanship on offer.
The Roadster also features new Dione rims measuring 20"/21" front and rear, which are hewn from light forged aluminium in order to reduce unsprung mass by as much as 10kg compared to the normal set of wheels.
Then there is the engine, which it shares with the coupe, all 6.5l, 48 valves and 12 cylinders of high-revving design-wielding 515kW at a lofty 8250r/min and 690Nm at 5500r/min.
It utilises a seven-speed independent shifting rod (ISR) transmission and all-wheel drive to provide a claimed 0-100km/h dash in three seconds, and a top speed of 350km/h, which is identical to its tin-top cousin.
In order to increase efficiency, the engine features a cylinder deactivation system when the engine is working at partial load, while a stop and start system is also standard fare on the model.
The powered rear window influences the flow of air into the vehicle, but more importantly also controls the experience of the sound from the engine. The wind deflector, on the other hand, delivers almost complete calm inside the car, even at high speed.
It rests on the front windshield frame and can also be stored in the luggage compartment when its not being used.
The Aventador Roadster is also equipped with door windows with chamfered edges, which always ensure a perfect fit into the hard top seal, and underline the sharp side profile of the car.
The body is finished in a two-tone colour scheme with the windshield pillar, the two roof sections and the rear window area up to the "fins" are painted in gloss black. The visual effect is said to highlight a completely open vehicle with sleek lines combining perfectly balanced sportiness and elegance.
Lamborghini remains unashamedly a supercar brand that has performance, unconventional styling and heritage at its epicentre.
The Aventador Roadster is yet another chapter in the company’s design book and showcases what could perhaps be perceived as one of the most desirable vehicles currently on offer.
According to Stephan Winkelmann, president and CEO of Automobili Lamborghini, The Aventador is a jump of two generations in terms of design and technology; it’s the result of an entirely new project, but at the same time it’s a direct and consistent continuation of Lamborghini’s brand values.
It is extreme in its design and its performance, uncompromising in its standards and technology, and unmistakably Italian in its style and perfection.
For a relatively fledgling sportscar company that was founded in 1963, the company has built a strong brand with an equally enthusiastic client base.
As the company readies to expand its market footprint — if the Urus SUV concept shown at the Beijing Motorshow is anything to go by — then the company is likely to explore other unchartered waters in the not too distant future, though remaining true to its sporting lineage.
While order books are likely to be opened locally soon, the model will only reach SA in November next year. According to the company, the model will go on sale in international markets at a sticker price of €300,000 excluding taxes.