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First look: Lamborghini unveils Gallardo Spyder

Bullish handler: The Gallardo Spyder has shorted gear ratios, recalibrated steering and suspension and two pop-up rollover hoops.

Open-top Gallardo unleashed at Frankfurt by the House of the Raging Bull

23 Sep 2005

THOSE of us who can’t afford $669,000 for Lamborghini’s Murcielago Roadster will be heartened by the global debut of its little brother at last week’s Frankfurt motor show.

Based on the House of the Raging Bull’s two-year-old entry-level coupe, the Gallardo Spyder was previewed by the 2005 Geneva show’s striking Concept S show car, 80 to 90 examples of which will also be produced following unprecedented demand.

While the Gallardo Spyder lacks the Murcielago Roadster’s 426kW/650Nm 6.2-litre V12, its coupe-sourced 382kW 5.0-litre V10 should nonetheless suffice.

Lamborghini has fitted the Spyder with shorter gear ratios than in the coupe for quicker acceleration (0-100km/h in 4.3 seconds), while the open-top Gallardo also features recalibrated suspension, more direct and more precise steering and two pop-up rollover hoops.

Like its coupe donor car, the Spyder features aluminium body panels and permanent all-wheel drive, but differs in its use of an electro-hydraulic fabric roof that stows away beneath a carbon-fibre engine cover in a little over 20 seconds.

Alas, top speed drops from a claimed 314km/h to 307km/h with the roof down.

Gallardo Spyder will be available in Europe with two extra paint colours - Celeste Phoebe (light blue) and Verde Picus (green). Among new options is a rear wing-mounted video camera.

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