Dropped jaws, pointed fingers, and raised mobile phones are only a few of the reactions that every Huracán driver will see during an outing in the slab-sided $240,000 exotic. Of course, turning heads and being the center of attention — the eye of the hurricane, so to speak — are very much an important part of Lamborghini ownership.
2016 Lamborghini Huracan Review
There is no denying that the Italian automaker has spent the past 53 years building some of the world’s most powerful and radically styled — let’s throw in ostentatious, too — sports cars. Its past achievements have included such memorable coupes as the Countach, Diablo, and Aventador, yet, despite an extensive racing heritage, Lamborghini has continuously failed to deliver a road car that can be considered an equal to the world’s best driver’s cars. And I, too, have supported the consensus that all production series Lamborghinis have fallen short in some way or another. Until now.
The all-new Lamborghini Huracán (Spanish for “hurricane”) simply is closer to perfection than any road car ever to come from Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy. Replacement for the Gallardo, this mid-engine, all-wheel drive two-seater first grabbed the public’s eye at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show. Its innovative hybrid carbon-aluminum chassis was covered in aluminum and composite body panels sculpted under the direction of Filippo Perini and refined in a wind tunnel — though the radical design looked as though it could have been penned by some sinister madman walled up in an ancient monastery. The Batmobile looks wimpy in comparison.
Mid-mounted in the rigid tub is a formidable, Audi-sourced naturally aspirated V10 engine, displacing 5.2-liters and rated at 602 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque. Mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch automated gearbox, it launches the 3,400-pound coupe to 60 mph in a blistering 2.9 seconds — top speed is a blazing 202 mph.
Lamborghini was fanatical in its effort to saturate the Huracán with the latest technology, which makes it the most advanced Lambo ever. A Piattaforma Inerziale utilizes a trio of accelerometers and gyroscopes to oversee acceleration, deceleration, roll, pitch, and yaw — and then powerful computers process the information to ensure that each of the driver’s commands are diligently obeyed by the wicked machine. A three-mode toggle, accessed via the Adaptive Network Intelligent Management (ANIMA) switch on the bottom spoke of the steering wheel allows the operator to switch between Strada (street), Sport, and Corsa (race) modes with the touch of a finger, which adapts the engine’s throttle, gearbox, dampers, stability control, exhaust note, and all-wheel drive for the particular driving environment.
Passenger comfort has often been compromised in a Lamborghini; styling and the mechanical componentry took center stage. But those old traditions don’t apply with the Huracán — despite its radical appearance, my six-foot two-inch frame fits comfortably within its well-appointed cabin. Each of the multiple digital displays are easy to read, and every single aerospace-inspired toggle is within effortless reach. It’s a deep and very low-slung passenger cockpit, with a roof that seems to stretch far overhead (there is so much shade that sunglasses are nearly unnecessary), yet it is unbelievably comfortable.
Best of all is its driving dynamics. Lift the red cover on the center console to fire its engine to life — the exhaust roars and your pulse rate doubles. There is no manual transmission anymore, but only someone inexperienced with the precision of a well-tuned dual-clutch gearbox would complain — humans are a weak link.
The all-wheel-drive system ensures that every hoof beat of horsepower is converted to forward motion, while its nominal 30:70 torque split keeps its tail-end, at least for the experienced driver, light and lively. The steering is electrically assisted, which is typically an area for complaints, but here its variable assist and quick ratios deliver razor-sharp precision. Stopping is tasked to giant 15-inch carbon-ceramic brake rotors that are capable of hauling the Huracán to a dead stop from 60 mph in just 100 feet — that level of deceleration is dizzying.
A spirited drive through the canyons in this newest Lamborghini is pure bliss. In comparison, the broad-shouldered Aventador is massive and lumbering, while the Gallardo is cramped and twitchy. The new Huracán is about perfect. It begs to be tossed around a decreasing radius turn and powered out the other side, throttle response is immediate — like an afterburner — and the engine’s wail at the 8500-rpm redline will forever sear itself into your mind.
I’ve never wanted a $295,275 car quite this badly.