The new lightweight Lamborghini Urus Performante super SUV adds more power, more downforce and a Rally mode
The Lamborghini Urus Performante is the fastest version of the brand's super-SUV, featuring a tuned version of Lambo's twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8. It produces 657bhp – 16bhp more than the standard car – while torque remains the same at a healthy 850Nm. It's on sale now, priced from £170,260.
The new power figure means the Urus Performance will sprint from 0-62mph in just 3.3 seconds, three-tenths quicker than the standard car, and on to a top speed of 190mph. Handling has also been fine-tuned to make the Lambo sharper to drive and more fun. The steering rack and rear-wheel steering system have been recalibrated to be more aggressive, while the drive select system now features a Rally mode, adjusting the car’s parameters for use on gravel tracks.
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Lamborghini has given the Urus Performante a subtle exterior makeover, with more lightweight materials in use. Up front, the Performante’s bonnet is made from carbon fibre and features aggressive vents providing increased engine cooling, while the newly designed bumper draws air from around the front wheels which helps to reduce drag.
The Performante’s suspension means the car sits 20mm lower (on steel springs, not the standard car’s air suspension), while the carbon fibre wheel-arch extensions are needed to accommodate the 16mm increased track and 22, or optional 23-inch, forged alloy wheels. Both wheel sets feature titanium bolts and are wrapped in track-ready Pirelli Trofeo R rubber.
At the rear, the Performante boasts a carbon fibre bumper, a lightweight titanium Akrapovic exhaust and a new rear spoiler with carbon fibre fins inspired by the Aventador SVJ. It produces 38 per cent more downforce than the standard spoiler – in fact, downforce has increased by eight per cent overall, along with an improvement to aerodynamic efficiency.
Thanks to its redesigned bumpers, the Performante is 25mm longer than the standard Urus, but those liberal sprinklings of carbon fibre mean weight is down by 47kg, to a still-not insubstantial 2,150kg.
It’s no surprise, then, to find it is far from a stripped-out racer on the inside. The Urus Perfoemante comes trimmed with a Nero Cosmus black Alcantara interior featuring hexagonal stitching, with the option to have the headlining, door cards, back seats and boot lined in Alcantara, too.
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The steering wheel is also trimmed in Alcantara and there’s black anodized aluminium trim pieces. Even the infotainment screens get unique Performante graphics.
If you want to customise your Performante further then Lamborghini's Ad Personam personalisation programme caters for bespoke requests, offering options such as matt carbon fibre trim pieces, red interior door handles and custom kick plates. Or you can go for the Dark Package, which finishes much of the centre console in matt black. Want yet more carbon fibre? Fill your boots with the optional carbon fibre roof, which mirrors those found on the Huracan Performante and Super Trofeo.
Stephan Winkelmann, Lamborghini’s Chairman and CEO, said: “The Urus Performante takes the supreme performance and distinctive looks of Lamborghini’s ground-breaking super SUV to the next level, retaining its luxurious versatility and delivering the most engaging driving experience: not only on road but in every environment, distinguished through an alluring design that denotes new benchmarks for driving dynamism in what is already a remarkable car.”
And if you like the sound of that, get your money down quick because first deliveries of the Performante are expected before the year is out.
Q&A with Lamborghini head of R&D Rouven Mohr
Q: Is it fair to say it’s more difficult to make a Performante out of an Urus than it is a Huracan, given that you have more weight and a higher ride height?
A: I would not say it’s definitely much more difficult – it’s a different challenge. Our philosophy is not only to build the fastest car because we have to enable our customers to enjoy the car even if they are not pro drivers. In a mid-engined car, it’s another challenge.
Q: Why make a car with such a track focus but also give it a rally mode? They seem like opposing ideals.
A: This is exactly what we like – to play with opposites; to demonstrate the potential of the car. We decided for this purpose to call it ‘Rally Mode’ because it’s not off-road, because it’s not an off-road car. We want to transfer the performance and sporty driving feeling also on the low grip surfaces, therefore ‘Rally’.
Q: Thinking about the Urus Performante’s Rally mode and the incoming off-road Lamborghini Huracan – did the two projects take learnings from each other?
A: The Sterrato was the inspiration for the Rally mode in this car. We showed this [the concept version] to the whole company, then we have shown it to some of the journalists, and now finally the car is becoming reality because the feedback was so incredible. Then in our area, we started development [of the Urus Performante] and we said “OK, for the off-road thing, let’s try and transfer some of the features we learned in the Sterrato.”
Q: What will the uptake be like on the optional Trofeo R tyre?
A: My assumption – I don’t think that the majority will take them because the majority will probably prefer the bigger rim. It’s 23 [inches in diameter] and the Trofeo R is only on 22 [inch]. But it’s also nice that we can offer the option and I’m pretty sure some of the customers will order two sets – one set if they want for one weekend [to have] a track experience and the other set for daily usage.
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