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Paris show: Lambo teases next Murcie - again

Super-sportscar: The third of six teaser images of Lamborghini’s Paris show car reveals yet more carbon-fibre components.

Third teaser image of Lamborghini’s next-gen Murcielago emerges ahead of Paris

21 Sep 2010

LAMBORGHINI has issued the third of six teaser images it has committed to revealing in the lead-up to the Paris motor show on September 30, when it will stage the world debut of a concept that is widely expected to preview a replacement for its Murcielago flagship.

As with the first two images, the third detail picture reveals extensive use of carbon-fibre componentry in the replacement for its near-decade-old Murcielago, which was launched in 2001.

Accompanying the second image was an outline of what the Italian supercar maker has dubbed ‘Lamborghini’s manifesto for future supersportscars’, in which company president and CEO Stephan Winkelman says Lamborghini plans to make extensive use of carbon-fibre to reduce the weight of all its future models.

51 center imageAs part of its shift away from increasing the top speed of every new model, Lamborghini says weight reduction through the use of carbon-fibre – rather than simply adding power – in its future models will allow it to further increase power-to-weight ratios, thereby improving handling and acceleration.

“Lamborghini stands for extreme and uncompromising supersportscars of the best Italian tradition,” said Mr Winkelman. “Tradition as a value, however, lives at Lamborghini alongside innovation.

“We are redefining the future of our supersportscars around the two main reasons to buy: design and performance. Design has been and always will be reason number one, and we will make sure a Lamborghini will always be recognisable through its significant stylistic features.

“Regarding performance, until a few years ago priorities were, in this order: top speed, acceleration and handling. In recent years this has been changing. Together with design, handling and acceleration are becoming more important.

“Speed is not as important anymore, because all supersportscars are exceeding 300km/h (186 mph) and this is a speed that you cannot reach even on a racetrack, let alone normal roads. We think it is time to make a shift and talk more about handling and acceleration.

“The key factor in terms of better handling and acceleration, meaning more immediate pleasure in driving, is the power-to-weight ratio. This is not so much about top speed and so the future will not be so focused on increasing the power, even because CO2 emissions do play a role for supersportscars, too. That means the key is in reducing the weight.

“A crucial part of this is to understand how to reduce the weight. From the middle of the Eighties, the average weight of our cars has increased by 500kg because of active and passive safety, comfort and emissions reduction issues, and this is something that we have to change. Since we cannot reduce safety or comfort in our cars, we have to reduce the weight by using new materials.

“The magic word for this is ‘carbon-fibre’. We started working with carbon-fibre in Sant’Agata Bolognese over 30 years ago and today, with our two laboratories in Sant’Agata Bolognese and in Seattle, we are mastering a broad range of technologies which put us in a leadership position for low-volume production.

“Every new Lamborghini will make the best use of carbon-fibre to reduce weight.” The final production version of the Paris show concept, which may not continue to wear the Murcielago nameplate, is due to appear at the next Geneva motor show in March, and could borrow lightweight aluminium spaceframe chassis technology from VW Group sister brand Audi.

As we’ve reported, the Murcielago successor is expected to weigh less than 1500kg (down from at least 1660kg with the current model), which combined with a larger and more powerful 7.0-litre V12 should allow it to sprint to 100km/h in close to three seconds.

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