Lamborghini could be killing the V12
The V12 is a glorious engine, it makes an amazing noise and it can be tuned to put out many many horses , it is an engine synonymous with supercars and one brand in particular, Lamborghini.
Lambo have been making V12 powered supercars for over 50 years now with the Miura, Countach, Diablo, Murcielago and the Aventador all carrying that flagship engine but it looks like the end of the line might be in sight for this iconic engine.
The dark clouds on the horizon are in the form of the EU7 emissions and while Lambo's V12 can still meet those new standards, it's going to take a lot of money to upgrade the engine.
Audi have said that it will cost an estimated $900 million to upgrade the V12 and develop replacements for the Huracan and the Aventador but Lambo say they could refine the V12 with only $50 million and replace the two models for less than $400 million but the main issue here is that VW hold the keys to the vault and convincing them to part with a sizable sum of money isn't going to be easy.
Audi want both the replacement models to be powered by a variant of Porsche's 4L hybrid V8, this shows that they don't care at all about Lambo's image. Other options could be to add a hybrid powertrain to the V12 or incorporate forced induction but both of those would kill the shrieking exhaust note and the pure NA power that we've come to love from the Lambo V12s.
The VAG group want to increase Lambo's profitability so it can be a proper Ferrari rival across all fronts. Ferrari have become a brand themselves, selling everything from pens to perfumes and the boffins at VAG want to turn Lambo into exactly that. Judging from the popularity of the Urus, there isn't much to say that customers won't keep buying their cars if there is no V12 powered supercar in the lineup. The Urus uses an Audi sourced twin turbo V8 and sales have been incredible with the car outselling the combined figures of Lambo's two other supercars this year.
As I write this piece, I'm sitting at my table where I've got a model of the Murcielago and the Aventador and on the wall above hangs a poster of the Aventador S speeding off into the sunset. That seems like a perfect metaphor for my hopes and dreams regarding Lamborghini at this very moment.
It's a brand that I've idolized ever since I could talk and should they cut the V12 from the lineup, my faith in the company will also be dashed.
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Words by Matthew D'souza, pictures sourced from the Lamborghini Media website.