by Sebastian Cenizo
Taking the baton from the most successful Lamborghini ever to be sold, the Gallardo, is a daunting task for the Lamborghini Huracan, launched in 2014. Luckily, all the right ingredients - and a host of new technologies - are there to make a fireball of a supercar. The Huracan is endowed with a 5.2-liter naturally aspirated V10 engine producing 602 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque. Power is sent through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission to all four wheels, but if you're after a purer experience than that offered in the LP610-4, the LP580-2 takes a cut in weight and power, producing 571 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque, sending all thrust to the rear wheels. While some have accused the Huracan of being too tame - most notably Richard Hammond of Top Gear and now The Grand Tour - the "baby Lambo" as it is affectionately known is a serious performance car that is arguably more fun to drive than its V12 big brother, the Aventador.
The 562-hp V10 of the old Gallardo is comprehensively overhauled in the Huracan to produce more power - up to 40 hp more. In addition, a new 12.3-inch TFT "virtual cockpit" debuts, from which the driver can control the infotainment system and display vital performance and engine information. The entire body is completely redesigned too, with only the side windows bearing much resemblance to those of the outgoing Gallardo. Start-stop is introduced to increase efficiency as well, and an advanced stability control system uses gyroscopes to better adapt the car's behavior to various driving scenarios. It's not all good news, however. The manual gearbox has sadly died with the Gallardo. No more open-gate goodness and notch-shifting for the enthusiast.
The Huracan has a much more rounded body design than the final Gallardo it replaced, but there are a number of angular touches too, intended to evoke the shape of the sixth element of carbon. Speaking of which, you can add various carbon fiber accents to the body to make it appear racier, but even as standard, there's restrained aggression to the way this thing looks. Sharp LED headlights and narrow taillights feature on both models, with the rear-wheel-drive LP580-2 getting larger front air intakes and a redesigned rear diffuser, as well as 19-inch wheels as standard with 20s optional. The all-wheel-drive LP610-4 gets the larger wheel size from the factory. Whichever you choose, both are suitably styled to let others know what kind of supercar this is; you can't mistake the Huracan for anything but a Lambo.
Both variants of the Huracan feature the exact same dimensions, with the exception of a difference in curb weight. The lighter, rear-wheel-drive LP580-2 has a dry weight of 3,062 lbs while the all-wheel-drive LP610-4 is not much heavier at 3,135 lbs. Length for both measures 175.6 inches, with the wheelbase clocking in at 103.2 inches. The width, meanwhile, is 75.8 inches with the height measuring 45.8.
The Huracan is treated to numerous exterior paint options, all of which bear exotic-sounding Italian names. Among these are three shades of blue, three yellows, a pair of orange hues, some shades of gray, white, and black, and also red and green finishes too. Among the most striking options are Blue Nethuns special metallic, Giallo Tenerife pearl, Rosso Mars metallic, and a firm favorite: Verde Mantis pearl, a bright shade of almost limelike green with a hint of yellowing mixed in. For ultimate aggression, however, we think that Nero Helene metallic, a rich black finish, looks brilliantly sinister, and helps make the angular LED headlight accents look even more menacing.
The Huracan is available in two distinct variants, one of which offers maximum power and unrivaled grip, and another that shaves weight and makes the driving experience a more lively and fun escapade. The LP580-2 is the latter. The 5.2-liter naturally aspirated V10 that both models share, produces 571 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque in this model, all of which is sent through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox to the rear wheels. What does this mean? Well, obviously, our inner hooligans are excited by the prospect of drifting and general tomfoolery. However, with less weight, that N/A V10 can be exploited without burning the rear tires either, and for those who like to thread the trickiest of corners together, this model offers an opportunity for a slightly less-assisted and raw experience.
The LP610-4 also makes use of a seven-speed dual-clutch auto and that magnificent V10 engine, but here it makes better use of the hardware to produce 602 horses and 413 lb-ft of twist. With more power and a higher focus on going as fast as possible, the LP610-4 gets from 0-62 mph in 3.2 seconds - two tenths quicker than its rear-wheel-drive sibling. In addition, its top speed is higher, with a cap at 202 mph versus the 580's 199 mph.
The Huracan range shares a solitary engine and transmission configuration. A 5.2-liter naturally aspirated V10 sits midships behind the cockpit, with a seven-speed dual-clutch auto handling the transmission of power to the wheels. In the LP610-4, the output is a healthy 602 hp (or 610 in the Queen's metrics - hence the name) and 413 lb-ft of torque, which is sent to all four wheels, hence the "4" designation. The LP580-2 employs the same naming strategy and produces 571 horsepower, with 398 lb-ft of torque. In an era where turbocharging is the future and is being rapidly adopted by many, including Lambo's arch-enemies over in Maranello, the sound of a howling V10 with instantaneous throttle response and a red line north of 8,000 rpm, is simply magnificent and should be savored. Utilizing both direct and multi-point fuel injection, Lamborghini offers buyers the first V10 in the world to make use of such a combination. The result is improved efficiency and power, but that would go to waste if the gearbox were a dismal companion. Luckily, the dual-clutch transmission is up to the task, providing shifts in a fraction of a second and allowing you to blast your way through the gears quicker than you could do it with a manual. As much as this gearbox is a brilliantly engineered unit with outstanding responses and impressive smoothness at low speeds, we can't help but think that if Lamborghini really wanted us to have a proper driver's car with the LP580-2, they should have at least offered this version with a manual. Unfortunately, buyers have made the decision for them, and it's no longer feasible for such an undertaking to be developed.
The "base" LP580-2 is without a doubt the more fun car to drive, offering impressive grip through its advanced traction control system and, when you want it, a phenomenal sideways experience that is aided by stability control that will allow you to hang the tail out without sending you farming. Since this rear-wheel-drive model doesn't have any drive going to the front wheels, Lamborghini redesigned the front end with larger air intakes that are claimed to improve downforce. Along with a lip on the rear spoiler and a rising diffuser, Sant'Agata's engineers claim that the 580 does not require an adjustable rear wing. Since they wanted the car to behave differently and be more sensitive to weight transfer, the springs, dampers, and anti-roll bar are all around 10% less rigid than in the all-wheel-drive model. With weight distribution rated at 40:60 front to rear, this car is made to go sideways and be manageable too. As a by-product of weight saving, the carbon-ceramic brakes that perform brilliantly on the LP610-4 are swapped for steel discs, which are more prone to fade in extreme use. Nevertheless, the LP580-2 is not built for all-out lap time leadership but rather for fun, and the brakes are more than sufficient. However, due to electromechanical steering, both models suffer a little from vague feel, although the lighter car is better in this regard.
The heavier LP610-4 is a more hardcore vehicle, producing more power and channeling its focus towards being more precise on the track. With this in mind, it gets the base model's optional dynamic steering modes with varying weights. In addition, its stability control system employs the use of gyroscopes and other sensors to help adapt and keep the car on the track. Along with standard adaptive dampers, ride quality is improved and you can legitimately use the Huracan daily. Nevertheless, the Audi DNA is present in a negative way too, as pushing the car too hard can lead to understeer.
Although buyers are unlikely to give this section more than a passing glance, it's worth noting that both variants of the Huracan, despite having different weight figures and power outputs, are rated exactly the same on the EPA's cycles. The official figures are 13/18/15 mpg on the city/highway/combined cycles. Paired with a 21.1-gallon gas tank, the Huracan will return an average range of 316 miles with mixed driving. Interestingly, the similar Audi R8 returns improved figures of 14/22/17 mpg on the same cycles and offers a range of 372 miles from its slightly larger 21.9-gallon gas tank.
As is common with supercars, and particularly those originating from Italy, the cabin is liberally swathed in high-end materials. Alcantara, leather, aluminum, and carbon fiber are the materials of choice, and thanks to Audi influence, the fit and finish, quality, and solidity of the cabin are exceptional. A brand-new 12.3-inch TFT screen grabs the driver's focus, controlling instrumentation and the infotainment system, Navigation, if specced, is also displayed here with no central screen on the console. Instead, you'll find additional controls including those for the dual-zone climate control system, as well as the trademark flip-cover beneath which the start button is housed. Heated seats are an available option, but if you want a more focused experience, fixed carbon seats will hold you tightly in place.
If you want a more-door Lambo, you'll have to get an order in for the Urus SUV. In the Huracan, there are only two seats. Access to these is much like in any other supercar: tricky. Getting in and out requires positioning your body in a way that is not natural. If you're over six-foot tall, you'll be folding yourself like a bad Poker hand, getting yourself into uncomfortable positions to get a taste of the good life. Once you've cleared the low sill and positioned yourself between the large bolsters, the view out the front is good enough to make parking and placement of the car relatively simple. Attempting a glance out the back serves no other purpose than to strain your neck unnecessarily, weakening it before you start the Huracan up and attack the track. Fortunately, a rearview camera is obligatory and has been included to make backing up a little easier. Headroom and legroom are sufficient, although the former is not expansive for taller individuals. Nevertheless, it's not an uncomfortable place to sit.
Expensive materials and exquisite finishes are the order of the day, with the interior swathed in your choice of various combinations. Alcantara or leather can be had individually or together, with additional carbon fiber available for trimmings on the dash and door panels, too. The leather-wrapped steering wheel and dash feel sumptuous, with the aluminum switchgear feeling weighty and perfectly machined. In terms of color, the combinations are almost endless, with variations of white, yellow, black, red, green, and more, available to choose from. With so much choice, it's easy to get stuck on the online configurator, musing endlessly about what color combination won't get boring quickly.
The mid-engined layout of the Huracan necessitates a repositioning of the trunk to the front. Its capacity is a meager 3.5 cubic feet, allowing only enough space for a very small bag. If you want to fetch your dry-cleaning in this Lambo, it's best you don't take a passenger along and rather use the vacant seat for your freshly-pressed Armani suit.
In the cabin, storage solutions are similarly minimalist. The doors house a pocket each, but they're rather shallow and obstructed by the door pulls. The glove box is similarly small, and those who enjoy beverages as company will have to pay extra for the privilege of cupholders.
The Huracan is not endowed with an expansive feature list, as most of the focus is, predictably, on performance. Dual-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, and start/stop technology all come standard, as do heated mirrors and keyless remote entry. The LP610-4 also gets magnetic dampers that are optional on the LP580-2, with both models earning a new 12.3-inch TFT virtual cockpit as a digital driver info display. Heated seats and LED lighting for the engine bay form part of the options list. Dynamic steering is also available, as is cruise control. A practical concession made in the interest of saving the nose of the car from scraping is an optional lifting system that can raise the front of the car by up to 1.8-inches - useful when you find yourself confronted with the daunting foe of a speedbump.
The 12.3-inch digital screen that handles the driver's info cluster also doubles as a display for the infotainment system. Unfortunately, it doesn't come with much as standard. An AM/FM radio and a CD player are standard, but you have to pay extra for Bluetooth and native smartphone integration (read: not Apple CarPlay), satellite radio, and navigation. Also available is a Sensonum ten-speaker premium sound system, hidden behind hexagonal speaker grilles.
The Huracan has been impressively recall-free during its entire time on sale, a testament to the build quality that the partnership with Audi has helped garner.
In terms of warranty, Lamborghini offers fully comprehensive bumper-to-bumper coverage that takes care of everything from the powertrain to the infotainment screen. The warranty lasts for three years with no mileage cap imposed. Maintenance, however, is for your own account.
Vehicles in this price range aren't usually submitted for crash testing and the Huracan is no exception. Neither the IIHS nor the NHTSA has crashed the supercar.
Not a lot of safety equipment is included with the Huracan, with no real options available either. A rearview camera and parking sensors for the front and rear of the car are included, along with a pair of front airbags and a pair of side-impact airbags.
The Huracan is one of the few naturally-aspirated vehicles remaining on the market. Couple that with the fact that you can have a rear-wheel-drive model, and you have the perfect recipe for a brilliant supercar that can be fun yet compliant on the daily drive, as well as frantic and fast on the racetrack. With a more powerful and more stable LP610-4 model available too, with all-wheel-drive, even the inexperienced can enjoy the pleasure of a sonorous engine at full tilt. Others may be faster, or more technically advanced, but the purity of the experience that comes with having a howling V10 sitting inches behind your head is hard to beat. It may be disappointing to some that things like smartphone integration and navigation cost extra, but for us, that simply means that Lamborghini wanted buyers focusing on driving. We love the Huracan and can't find a definitive reason for anyone to skip over it.
The Lamborghini Huracan is the most affordable Lamborghini on sale, with a starting price of $203,674 for the base rear-wheel-drive model, the LP580-2. The LP610-4 model comes with more power, uprated suspension, improved stability control systems specially suited to the all-wheel-drive application, and a higher price tag. This top model in the range starts at $242,474. Both models will require you to pay $3,695 for delivery, with other taxes and fees not included. Getting carried away with the options will likely be expensive, and we would not be surprised to see a Huracan with a price tag approaching the $300k mark.
The Lamborghini Huracan is available in two trims: The LP580-2 and the LP610-4. The LP 580-2 is a rear-wheel-drive Huracan with 571 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque. It comes with 19-inch wheels, steel brakes, and a top speed of 199 mph. Its body features larger air intakes in the front bumper, thus providing more front-end grip to compensate for the lack of traction. In addition, a redesigned rear diffuser and a unique lip spoiler feature at the rear of the car. The traction and stability control systems have been specially recalibrated to adjust for the 40:60 front-to-rear weight distribution and the unique handling characteristics that a rear-biased setup requires, thus making the car more manageable when drifting and sliding about.
The LP610-4 uses the same 5.2-liter V10 and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission as its little brother. However, here the engine sends its power to all four wheels, and there's a lot more of it: 602 hp and 413 lb-ft of torque are the official figures. This model features 20-inch wheels housing carbon-ceramic brakes as standard, along with adaptive magnetorheological dampers, dynamic steering, and unique ESP and traction control calibration. The car also makes use of gyroscopes to help it manage torque vectoring and supply the correct wheel with the correct output, thus improving traction and making for faster lap times.
The LP580-2 comes with steel brakes and smaller wheels as standard, but Lamborghini won't inhibit you from spending more money on the car if you wish. 20-inch wheels and carbon-ceramic brakes can be had, and you can also spec the LP610-4's active magnetic dampers. Other available options include navigation, smartphone integration, Bluetooth, and a ten-speaker Sensonum sound system. Carbon engine accents can be had too, along with LED engine bay lighting to help show off that glorious V10 at the next nighttime meet. For colder evenings, heated seats can be specced as well. A lifting system for the nose of the car is also worth considering, raising the front of the car by 1.8-inches at the touch of a button to help you clear tricky driveway entrances or speed bumps.
Regardless of the model, both of the Huracan's models are brilliant to drive and look fantastic. Bragging rights will naturally go to the faster and more heavily-equipped LP610-4, but for us, we'd be most happy with the rear-wheel-drive LP580-2. Acceleration from 0-62 mph is just two-tenths of a second slower, with top speed only separated by three mph. In addition, 571 hp is more than enough for a car that has a dry weight of barely more than 3,000 lbs, and with the ability to perform ludicrous drifts and smoky burnouts, the LP580-2 will doubtless be far more fun and exciting daily. Where the faster all-wheel-drive model is fun to launch and take to a track, the rear-wheel-drive model is fun, period. In addition, you can spend a little more on the options and still come in below the LP610-4's base price. For us, there's no question: rear-wheel-drive and a naturally-aspirated V10 are the perfect combination.
Can't decide which Lambo to buy? We wish we had your problems. At nearly double the price of the base Huracan, the $399,500 Aventador LP700-4 is a 6.5-liter V12 monster. Also equipped with a seven-speed (albeit a clunky single-clutch automatic), and exclusively available with all-wheel-drive, the Aventador is a ballistic missile, and arguably a much better-looking beast than the Murcielago it replaced. With 691 hp and 509 lb-ft of torque, it's a much more powerful car than the Huracan. It's also bigger, which can be a good thing for interior space, but it means that its unwieldy on the track compared to the lighter and nimbler Huracan. It also means you'll struggle to park it if you reside in a city. For us, the V10 in the Huracan sounds better too, and being able to deftly chuck it about with wanton abandon makes it more fun. The largest Lambos also have an image of being male appendage extension devices too, so we'd rather stick with the enthusiasts' Huracan.
Is the Huracan a budget Lambo or an expensive R8? Well, Lamborghini did develop the V10 and subsequently allowed Audi to borrow it for their halo car so, technically, the Lambo is the forerunner and the reason the R8 exists. Nevertheless, without Audi's input, things like the shared 12.3-inch TFT screen and improved build quality may never have manifested in any Lambo, and with a starting price of $169,900, it's hard to ignore the R8's value. The R8 can also be had in rear-wheel-drive flavor. Nevertheless, the familiarity of the Audi badge and its less eccentric and more functional interior are hard to ignore if you've just stepped out of an Alcantara-clad supercar that doesn't have to justify its exotic credentials. For us, that Lamborghini badge and the associated Italian flair are worth their weight in gold, but the R8 is very compelling.