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Geneva show: Lambo debuts $2.65 million masterpiece

Carbon dating: The polished carbon-fibre skin of the new Lamborghini Centenario helps to cut weight and aid performance.

Carbon-fibre Lambo Centenario sets new benchmark for Raging Bull performance


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2 Mar 2016

THE most potent Lamborghini ever built is a sell-out success before it has even hit the streets, despite an eye-watering €1.75 million ($A2.65m) price tag in Europe.

Revealed overnight at the Geneva motor show, the limited-edition 566kW V12 Lamborghini Centenario can blast from zero to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds and top out at 350km/h. Braking from 100km/h takes just 30 metres.

Based on the flagship Aventador, the Centenario is nevertheless seriously altered, getting an extreme super-cool light-weight polished carbon-fibre body, rear-wheel steering and wings and things.

Just 40 Centenarios will be built – 20 coupes and 20 roadsters – and all are spoken for before one rolls off the production line at Sant’Agata, in Italy.

A spokesperson for Lamborghini in Australia said they were unaware of any of the vehicles coming to this country.

The Centenario has been designed and built by Lamborghini to celebrate the centenary of the birth of Lamborghini founder Ferrucio Lamborghini.

Outgoing Automobili Lamborghini president and CEO Stephan Winkelmann said the Centenario looked to the future while honouring the Ferruccio Lamborghini legend.

“The Centenario is an opportunity for our designers and engineers to transcend some of the constraints of series car production to achieve an incomparable result: the Centenario has immediately proved itself as a desirable collectors’ car, while demonstrating new Lamborghini technologies and outstanding performance,” he said.

“It is the most fitting tribute to Ferruccio Lamborghini in his centenary year: a man who created an exceptional brand, believed that anything was possible, and produced extraordinary, iconic cars.”

The all-wheel-drive Centenario weighs in at 1520kg – 55kg lighter than the standard Aventador – thanks to the carbon-fibre skin.

With an extra 14kW of power over the previous most powerful version of Aventador, the 552kW LP750-4 Super Veloce, the Centenario nips 0.2 seconds off the 0-100km/h sprint time.

The rev limiter of the naturally aspirated engine has been lifted from 8350rpm to a stratospheric 8600rpm, which should make for an awesome aural experience for those lucky enough to take a seat in the two-seat cabin.

Gear shifts are via Lamborghini’s robotised Independent Shifting Rod (ISR) gearbox that is said to provide faster gearshifts than a dual-clutch arrangement.

The body has been designed to maximise aerodynamic flow, not just over the panels but through them. Large air scoops at the front take in air and direct it out through the bonnet to contribute downforce, while air also can flow through the headlight casings and side skirts.

A unique feature of the Centenario is an extendable rear wing that can – depending on speed – extend 150mm and rotate up 15 degrees for added downforce.

At low speeds, it tucks away.

At the back, six yellow-tipped fins extend from the rear diffuser. The show car’s yellow trim theme also extends to the side skirts, front splitter and tyre walls.

LED lights stretch the full width of the rear.

Also new to Lamborghini is the rear-wheel steering system that, like Honda Preludes of yore, turns the back wheels in the opposite direction of the fronts for increased manoeuvrability at low speeds and then in the same direction as the fronts at high speeds for better stability.

This is said to work in concert with the three driving modes – Strada (street), Sport and Corsa (course). Centenario sits on magnetic ride control dampers and Pirelli P-Zero tyres.

The carbon-fibre look is carried into the cabin where even the seats are made from the hi-tech material. Inner door panels are of Alcantara, but customers can have almost anything they want at this price.

A telemetry system records speed, lap times and G forces for track work. Oh, and there is room for two helmets under the bonnet, Lamborghini says.

The Centenario can be had in any colour from the Lamborghini palette, but we suspect most will stick with the carbon-fibre look.

Production is set to start in the third quarter of this year, continuing through 2017.

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