Exotic styling; supercar recognition turns heads anywhere; uncomparable driving character; quicker and faster than nearly any other vehicle on the road
This year Lamborghini has expanded the model range of its priciest Murcielago supercar with two special models, to be produced in very limited numbers. The new Murcielago LP 670-4 SuperVeloce is a more powerful, lighter and faster version that boasts an improved top speed of about 212 mph; and the LP 650-4 Roadster is a special open-air version of the Murcielago with more power plus a special gray and Grigio Telesto (bright orange) paint scheme and logo on the exterior, plus orange brake calipers and a transparent engine cover.
Only 350 of the SuperVeloce models will be made worldwide, while only 50 of the LP 650-4 Roadsters will be offered, in addition to the rest of the Murcielago lineup, which carries over to 2010 unchanged.
Powering the LP640 is a huge 6.5-liter, 48-valve DOHC dry-sump V12 engine that makes 640 horsepower and 487 pound-feet of torque. The standard LP640 can get to 60 mph in less than 3.4 seconds and reach a top speed of more than 200 mph. The Murcielago puts all of that power and torque to the pavement with the help of a permanent 4-wheel drive system, employing a viscous clutch coupling and electronic controls that can vary the amount sent to the front or rear. In normal driving, 70 percent is sent to the back.
The Murcielago uses electronically controlled dampers at all four wheels, with a geometry that's designed to prevent brake dive and squat. The anti-lock brake system employed in the Murcielago line, with discs all around including big 15-inchers in front, is also far more robust than might be found in most other vehicles. Z-rated performance rubber provides the goods for both high-speed use and normal driving, but optional Pirelli P Zero Corsa tires are oriented for track driving.
At about 180 inches long, the Murcielago is about the same length as a compact sedan like the Volkswagen Jetta; but at 81 inches wide, the Lamborghini is much wider than your typical car.
Simply getting in and out of the Murcielago is different than almost any other new car; special scissor-style doors open up, while body stiffness is maintained while also preserving weight thanks to a special construction method using sheetmetal and carbon fiber bonded together.
Inside, the Murcielago has sport seats with integrated head restraints and special stitched leather, with leather also used on the door and roof panels. The instrument panel, while very simple and race-car like in some respects, includes a Kenwood sound system with 6.5-inch monitor and DVD/MP3 compatibility. A navigation system is available as well.
The LP640 Roadster sheds the LP640's solid roof for a cloth soft top that isn't quite up to four-season duty, or for going much faster than freeway speeds in the up position, but it should do just fine in an unexpected rainstorm. A removable hard top roof is also offered.
One of the two models new for 2010 is the limited-edition LP650-4 Roadster, which includes a slightly higher output of 650 horsepower, bringing top speed to 205 mph. Just as importantly, this limited-edition Roadster comes with a special gray-and-Grigio Telesto (bright orange) paint scheme, including orange brake calipers and a transparent engine cover just behind the driver.
The other limited-edition model is the LP670-4 SuperVeloce, a special track-tuned model that sheds more than 200 pounds of weight and gets an even more powerful 670-hp version of the same engine, bringing top speed to 212 mph and 0-60 mph in less than 3.2 seconds. The front end of the SuperVeloce also has a different look. Two different rear spoilers are offered, depending on intended use, with a larger Aeropack Wing providing more stabilizing downforce but lowering top speed slightly (to 209 mph).
In any of the Murcielago models, Lamborghini's Ad Personam customization program allows customers to customize their Murcielago to no end--all for a price, of course--with everything from special paint, custom trim materials or special interior fittings.
With a pricetag that can approach the half-million mark, once further customized or specially fitted, the Murcielago is a true exotic, offered in rare enough numbers to make spotting one a rare treat, even in moneyed areas. Meanwhile, Murcielago Roadsters are still among the hottest exotics to be seen cruising Rodeo Drive or Miami's South Beach.
Those with a racing bug will likely gravitate to the lighter, faster LP670-4 SuperVeloce that's new this year, offering some improved numbers that might make a difference at the track--and give some added bragging rights beyond Murcielago ownership itself.
All this said, the Murcielago offers a remarkably civil driving experience, but visibility is very difficult because of its low driving position and bodywork that favors fashion and high-speed aerodynamics over day-to-day functionality. What matters ultimately to most buyers won't have anything to do with practicality--rather the Murcielago's exclusivity, and the fact that it's one of the world's fastest sports cars.
Vehicle Price: 364,955.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
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