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Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4

BULLISTIC! (some text hidden)

By Jonathan Crouch

Lamborghini jumps forward two generations with its astonishing Aventador supercar. Jonathan Crouch reports.

Ten Second Reviewword count: 49

More powerful but cleaner, lighter and smarter is a great supercar template to work to. The Aventador is a piece of work that instantly makes its Murcielago predecessor appear prehistoric. With 700PS powering a lightweight carbon fibre chassis it's shockingly rapid but more controllable than any Lamborghini to date.

Backgroundword count: 170

The supercar as a concept has run its course. It's certainly an interesting discussion point and one that looked to be gaining traction until fairly recently. The market had split into the money-no-object million Euro hypercars beloved by Russian oligarchs, Chinese industrialists and Arab playboys at one extreme and entry-level models from the established Italian manufacturers with their accompanying rump of rivals. Between these two points, the market was struggling. Lamborghini's magnificent Murcielago LP-670 SV smacked of the last thrashings of a dying genre. The top brass at Lamborghini knew that something radical had to be done to breathe new life into the formula. The result is the Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4. At first glance it doesn't seem a major departure from a well-established bloodline. Squint and it looks like a Murcielago, albeit gym-honed with sharper edges. In classic Lambo style it features a big V12 behind the driver and the doors open upwards as before. But delve a little deeper and you'll begin to understand the scope of Lamborghini's achievement.

Driving Experienceword count: 233

Performance is, as you would expect, staggering. An output of 700PS makes this the most powerful normally-aspirated car in series production, but the Aventador's engine is in no way related to the Bizzarrini-designed V12 that was first plumbed into a Miura and which ended up - in much modified form - in the Murcielago. This all-new dry-sumped 6.5-litre engine continues to drive through all four wheels but does so via an ingenious single-clutch ISR sequential gearchange that, when switched into Corsa mode, can deliver gearchanges of breathtaking speed and brutality. On the road, the car is better left in Strada or, if you're keen, Sport mode. The steering is light yet precise, body control excellent and the brakes are crushing, as you'd expect from carbon ceramic discs with six-piston callipers at the front and four at the rear. Acceleration? Think rest to 60mph in 2.7s and on to a top speed of 217mph, accompanied by the sound that's purer in its timbre than the sometimes agricultural off-cam rumble of the old V12. The handling balance is a good deal more benign, thanks to better weight distribution, improved suspension design and smarter electronics. The end of the old-school scary Lamborghini V12? Try holding the throttle pedal down flat for ten seconds and get back to me on that one. If you're not completely juiced after doing that, you've got no petrol in your veins.

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Category: Sporting Cars

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