Geneva: Lamborghini J-Shock!
If ever car show has a show-stopper, then we reckon there were a few at Geneva 2012. But in purely visceral terms, purely in the realms of aesthetic wow and envy-inducing dribble, Lamborghini has to take the biscuit with its roofless, stripped-down Avantador J roadster.
Ferrari’s F12 Berlinetta may of course take the gong for ongoing audacity in the full production department – end Bentley’s bold move into new markets shows the sort of derring do that gets car shows of a particular time and place lodged into the historical record; but the car that expresses according to the company’s communicators “the most extreme expression of Lamborghini DNA of any car in existence” will be remembered merely on its looks alone.
The Aventador J gets its moniker from the FIA’s ‘Appendix J’ regulations – the denomination that defines racing car classification. The letter evokes also Lamborghini’s hard-edged Miura derivative the Jota – which was launched here in 1970.
The J is a one-off and Lamborghini have promised that no other cars bearing the raging bull badge will emerge from Sant Agata – though there will be a less pure-bred Aventador Roadster later this year. Whoever manages to snag the car when it is sold after the show, will be expected to pay at least £2M – which is the cost of the Carbon Fibre mysto-car they released a couple of years ago, the Sesto Elemento.
Lamborghini reckon that the pure focus of this topless race-bred machine (could it be called a barchetta) is an extreme driving experience : and predictably this means that everything has been stripped out of the carbon-fibre monocoque that might detract from that experiential ethos – including stereo and sat nav – never mind the windscreen and the aircon!
All these weight-saving measures are combined with a reworked body designed to increase aerodynamic grip – but the engine and the running gear remain the same as in the Aventador (6.5l V12, pushrod suspension). Though the company is keeping their powder dry as to kerb weight, you can bet that this thing will be scarily, gut jerkingly quick.
Despite the weight savings, this car is significantly longer and a little lower than the Aventador Coupé – and there’s that strange periscope-like rear view mirror that makes this thing instantly recognisable as more than a chopped Aventador.
Lamborghini say a narrower front end, complete with a dramatic front scoop and offset at the rear by that wing – gives the car the look of an F1 machine – though we wonder why a punter would want their Lamborghini to be sullied with that particular slight.
R cars are SO much prettier than the GP machines of recent years.
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