Lamborghini released quite a bit of information on the all-new Huracan back in December, but the facts were more like bullet points than detailed descriptions. Now, on the eve of the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, Lamborghini invited us to take a deeper look into the Huracan and there’s a lot more to the story.
What you know: “Huracan” is Spanish for hurricane and is the name of a fighting bull from 1879.
What you didn’t know: How to pronounce it. If you want to sound like a Lamborghini connoisseur, it’s pronounced ooo-rah-khan.
What you know: Its new V-10 makes 601 hp at 8250 rpm and 413 lb-ft at 6500 rpm.
What you didn’t know: The new engine is both port- and direct-injected to optimize fuel delivery at every single firing. It also has variable cam timing on all four cams. This comes with a wealth of benefits. The peak power and torque increases nearly 50 hp and 15 lb-ft are just one. Seventy-five percent of that torque (310 lb-ft) is available from 1000 rpm, an impressive achievement for a naturally aspirated engine. Not only does it make more power than the Gallardo and do it from the bottom of the rev range up, but a peek at the dyno chart shows that Huracan keeps making power all the way to redline, where the car’s predecessor used to fall off. The new engine even revs faster than the old one, if you really can’t wait to get to that power peak. You’ll enjoy the trip to redline no matter how you get there, thanks to a variable intake sound generator which will pump more intake noise into the cabin the harder you push it. Complementing that is a dual-mode exhaust system that opens under hard acceleration. For those concerned about how all this assaulting of the redline will affect the planet, Lamborghini has fitted an engine start/stop system and reduced both fuel consumption and CO2 emission by 11 percent compared to the Gallardo. A dry sump oiling system allows the engine to be mounted as low as possible for better weight distribution. Front/rear weight distribution, in case you’re wondering, is 42/58. The engine is produced at Audi’s Gyor, Hungary, engine plant alongside the powerplant that goes in the R8.
What you know: It’s got a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
What you didn’t know: It’s called “Lamborghini Doppia Frizione” (Lamborghini Double Clutch) and it’s the new Audi R8 gearbox retuned to Lamborghini spec. When you want to beat on it, a launch control system has been fitted and holding the downshift paddle rather than clicking it will drop you to the lowest available gear. When you’re not at the track, Lamborghini promises it’ll be the nicest driving street car the company has built. In fact, the company expects the Huracan to be the most-driven Lamborghini ever for that reason. “Easy on the road, absolutely performing on the racetrack,” as CEO Stephan Winkelmann puts it.
What you know: It doesn’t have a manual transmission option.
What you didn’t know: It won’t. According to company executives, manual transmissions accounted for an average of two percent of all Lamborghini sales over the last decade. The highest the take-rate ever got was five percent, and that was the same year the company saw the highest Gallardo sales ever. There just isn’t a business case for a small company like Lamborghini developing a transmission so few people will buy, especially with all the work it would take to make it work with the new chassis dynamics system on the Huracan. Even if the work got done, Lamborghini says taking control of the transmission away from the computer would blunt the system and thus the performance.
What you know: It’s all-wheel drive.
What you didn’t know: The old viscous-coupling system is gone. In its place is a fully computer-controlled system that’ll dish the power exactly when and where it’s needed. Nominally, power will be split 30/70 front/rear, but the computer can send up to 50 percent of the power to the front and up to 100 percent to the rear as conditions demand it. Transferring power is actually handled at the front axle, where a wet multi-plate clutch decides how much power to send out to the front tires.
What you know: It’s got an optional variable-ratio steering rack.
What you didn’t know: It’s electric steering, and it’s designed to alter the ratio with the performance. Below 31 mph, the steering will be quicker and more direct to make a sharp corner, which will make it easier to get in your garage. Above 62 mph, the steering will become slower, requiring more steering input for sharper turns in order to increase high-speed stability. The variable-ratio system can also help control oversteer by making “tiny, targeted countersteering impulses.” What you know: It’s got Magnetorheological shocks. What you didn’t know: The adaptive, electronically controlled shocks are icing on suspension cake. The suspension is entirely aluminum and is composed of double A-arms at all four corners. Hanging off the ends are two 20-inch wheel designs, one even lighter than the other. They’re wrapped in Pirelli PZero tires designed specifically for the Huracan, the best blend of street and track performance as well as ride comfort and fuel efficiency.
What you know: It’s got carbon-ceramic brakes.
What you didn’t know: They’re massive at 15 inches in the front and 14 inches in the rear. They’re clamped by six-piston calipers up front and four-piston calipers out back. The parking brake is electronic. Lamborghini says the brakes will haul the Huracan to a stop from 62 mph in 105 feet, though we have a feeling it’ll do quite a bit better than that. At minimum, that’s 3.6 feet shorter than the quoted stopping distance for a Gallardo, though the last Gallardo we tested – a Valentino Balboni Special Edition – stopped in 104 feet.
What you know: It’s got an advanced chassis dynamics system.
What you didn’t know: This might be the most technologically advanced car Lamborghini has ever built. On the surface level, you’ll be able to alter the car’s performance via the ANIMA switch on the bottom spoke of the steering wheel. ANIMA stands for “Adaptive Network Intelligent Management,” because Lamborghini really wanted to acronym to spell the Italian word for soul (anima). As you cycle from Strada (street) to Sport and Corsa (race), ANIMA will make changes to the throttle response, transmission response, dampers, stability control, all-wheel drive control, the intake and exhaust noise flaps, and the variable steering if you’ve got it. Informing those changes is Lamborghini’s Piattaforma Inerziale, an aerospace-inspired technology. It utilizes three accelerometers and three gyroscopes placed at the car’s center of gravity to measure acceleration front-to-back, side-to-side, and up-and-down, as well as roll, pitch, and yaw. All of that information will be relayed to the computer as it decides how best to make use of all the variable components on the car.