The Car Connection Lamborghini Aventador Overview
The two-seat Lamborghini Aventador is the top-flight supercar offered by the Italian automaker. Offered in both roadster and coupe form, it replaces the company's previous range-topper, the Murciélago.
With the exotic $400,000 Aventador, Lamborghini has a rival for some of the most expensive machines on the road, such as the McLaren 675LT.
For those who might be curious, Lamborghini took the Aventador's name, like those of its other models, from a Spanish fighting bull.
MORE: Read our 2016 Lamborghini Aventador preview
A 6.5-liter V-12 engine in standard Aventadors produces 700 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. The engine is the fourth to be built in-house by Lamborghini and only the second all-new V-12 design since the 3.5-liter V-12 that was introduced in the 350GT—the brand's first production model.
Shifting duties are handled by what Lamborghini calls an Independent Shifting Rod (ISR) automated manual transmission, which differs from the dual-clutch autos used in most cars in this class. The company claims that, based on this transmission and other developments it made for the Aventador, this car is two generations ahead of the competition. Paired with standard all-wheel drive, the whole package provides undeniably incredible performance—the Aventador is able to accelerate to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds and run up to a top speed of 217 mph. Few supercars can match both of those performance figures, putting the top Lambo in even rarer company.
The body may be the most radical element of the Aventador, with a jet fighter-like design theme and extensive use of carbon fiber. In fact, the entire chassis is made of carbon fiber, making it one of the first carbon monocoque road cars. The suspension and subframes are some of the only structural elements to use any metal at all. The suspension itself is race-inspired, too, with inboard pushrods transferring wheel loads to dampers mounted horizontally inside the body. Despite the weight-saving materials, the big Aventador still weighs in at 3,472 pounds.
Scissor-style doors open onto the cockpit, which is snug, low-slung, and futuristic in its look. As you'd expect from Lamborghini, it's all wrapped and shrouded in exquisite materials, including a healthy dose of carbon fiber. The first Avendators were gobbled up almost immediately; Lamborghini had a 12-month wait after announcing the model.
Lamborghini added the Aventador roadster for 2013.
A notable addition for the 2015 model year was the Aventador Pirelli Edition, which recognized the supercar's tire supplier. The design package included a choice of four matte exterior colors, a matte black roof, red-outline black wheels, a red accent stripe along the roofline, and various interior finishes, including contrasting red stitching. The Pirelli car was offered in both coupe and roadster body styles and was sold in limited numbers.
Lamborghini also recently introduced a new top model for the Aventador, the LP 570-4 SuperVeloce, or SV for short. It combines the most powerful version of the car's V-12—738 hp—with a net weight around 110 pounds less than the standard Aventador's. The SV includes the requisite big honking wing out back and other aerodynamic tweaks, and Lamborghini says it is capable of a 0-60 mph time of 2.8 seconds. The SV badge has been appended to many top Lambos in the past, including the Diablo and Murciélago most recently. (It means "super fast.") Lamborghini will build a total of 600 of these models for worldwide consumption, and in the U.S. they will command a price of about $500,000—a full 25 percent more than the non-SV car. A SuperVeloce Roadster version is available, if you're looking for a 738 hp hairdryer.
Among other special editions, a completely topless Aventador J one-off prototype was made and shown at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show and will remain the only such model built.
A trio of unique limited-run cars was built using the Aventador's chassis and engine as a basis. Unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, the Lamborghini Veneno took an even more extreme angle on style and performance--and no, we didn't think that was possible either.
Further special editions and additional models will be rolled out over the course of the car's lifetime. A more powerful roadster, possibly with the SV name and/or engine could follow next.