Lamborghini officially unveiled the Asterion LPI 910-4 at the Paris Motor Show yesterday and the latest raging one joins the likes of Porsche 918 Spyder, McLaren P1, and Ferrari LaFerrari (and you thought Indian companies lacked imagination…). Yes, like these flagships, the latest Lambo is also a hybrid! In fact, Ferrari’s arch rival has gone one-step further and got the name right too – ‘Asterion’ means a mythical creature that is part man and part bull. That fits.
Okay, so it’s not a four-seater as we all had predicted. That longish roof line had suggested presence of two more seats but that space seems to have been utilized to better accommodate the hybrid powertrain. So there is one motor at the rear that performs three functions: it cranks the naturally-aspirated V10 petrol engine while also enabling instant start/stop functions; it generates electricity for the other two motors and the lithium-ion batteries; and it also adds more to the V10’s bull-power or increased torque in other words.
The other two electric motors sit on the front axle to power the front wheels. The funny part is, and something that no one could have possibly ever imagined, that this Lambo can be driven as a front-wheel-drive and that too in full-electric mode! In fact, you can select one of the three driving modes in the Asterion through buttons on its steering wheel. So while the all-electric mode could be used by the super-rich owner’s son for slipping the car out of the garage quietly, he can choose the next setting by pressing ‘I’ (for ‘Ibrido’ or ‘hybrid’ in English) at the first set of lights… This full-on power mode summons all electric motors and the gasoline engine for a combined output of 910 PS enabling the car to reach its maximum velocity of 320 km/h, but not before the kid has embarrassed the leather-clad lads on superbikes with the Lambo’s under three-second 0-100 km/h time!
The third and the final drive option is the ‘T’ (for ‘termico’ that means ‘thermal’) mode where it’s just that glorious V10 engine sending all 610 horses to the rear wheels through the same 7-speed DSG that does duty in the Hurracan. Lamborghini fans may call it the music mode too as this is the drive option where one would get to hear the V10 orchestra in its most undiluted form.
But the aforementioned rich kid would only be able to do do all of the above if Lamborghini puts this car into production. Sorry mister, as of now the car is here just to showcase the company’s hybrid technology.