LAMBORGHINI HAS TO EM­BRACE HY­BRID TECH

Autocar - - NEWS - MATT SAUN­DERS

Lamborghini has no al­ter­na­tive but to put some kind of hy­brid pow­er­train into the Huracán re­place­ment if it wants to bring down its fleet CO2 emis­sions. The firm makes twice as many Hu­racáns as Aven­ta­dors in a typ­i­cal year – some­times three or four times as many – and it has long been op­posed to ideas such as down­siz­ing and tur­bocharg­ing. This way, it can keep its enig­matic 10-cylin­der lump and sat­isfy chang­ing leg­is­la­tion.

How­ever global emis­sions test­ing regimes change over the next few years, it’s likely that a good plug-in hy­brid Huracán could cut the amount of CO2 emit­ted by its cars in half when you fac­tor pro­duc­tion vol­umes into your think­ing.

Trou­ble is, work­ing at a place like Lamborghini means you’re al­ways go­ing to be push­ing pow­er­train tech­nol­ogy to its limit. With elec­tri­fi­ca­tion tech­nol­ogy as it is, I sus­pect it would be al­most im­pos­si­ble to pack­age a high-volt­age bat­tery and elec­tric drive motors large enough to en­able a big gain in an emis­sions test into a car of the cur­rent Huracán’s type and size – with­out also mak­ing the com­bus­tion en­gine smaller. There’s very lit­tle free space in the Huracán and Lamborghini’s pref­er­ence for four-wheel drive makes it a rel­a­tively heavy car as things stand.

Fu­ture tech­nolo­gies such as solid-state or lithium-air bat­ter­ies will change the pic­ture and Lamborghini’s chal­lenge should be­come eas­ier. But I wouldn’t ex­pect the Sant’agata firm to be able to off­set all of the ad­di­tional mass that’s likely to be nec­es­sary at its first at­tempt.

If the next Huracán is both larger and heav­ier than the car it re­places, this will prob­a­bly be why.

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