We know the new Lamborghini Urus SUV will be fast on the track -- it has a 641-hp turbocharged V8 up front with a “hot-V” setup, which means the exhaust ports and turbochargers are in the V8’s valley. We know it’ll be expensive too: It starts at about $200,000 and goes up to about $250,000. And we’re guessing it’ll sell well. Lamborghini expects to double its current yearly output with the Urus, and if the Porsche Cayenne has anything to say about it, it might do more than that. At a swanky event after the first press day of the 2018 Detroit auto show, the SUV made its North American debut, and we learned a few more interesting facts.div">>
If you want to go off road in the 2019 Urus, we suggest the Pirelli Scorpion tire choice.
The Urus should have real off-road chops. Its air suspension can range from 6.2 inches of ground clearance to 9.8 inches. That’s more than the Wrangler Sport, a tad less than the Wrangler Sahara and only an inch less than the world-conquering Rubicon. You’ll be able to order this car with 23-inch low-profile Pirelli Corsa summer tires, obviously, but also with taller Pirelli Scorpions, which seem to be the choice for high-performance off-roading. Add all of that to the rear active torque vectoring, which can send up to 75 percent of power to one side, and we should have a potent performer in the dirt.div">>
It looks more like one of those bank cylinders that fly through the tubes, laying on its side.
Tamburo means "drum" in Italian (we double-checked), and it’s what Lamborghini calls its central drive mode controller, which is probably now the coolest on the market. It looks more like a thermos lying on its side to us. The left side features the drive modes -- strada for street, sport, corsa for race, sabbia for sand, terra for gravel and neve for snow. The middle portion includes the start button, protected by a fighter-jet-like red cover, along with the parking brake and manual-mode button as well as reverse when you pull back on the handgrip. When not going in reverse, it doubles as a wrist rest when you’re fiddling with the new touchscreen. The right side is where you’ll find the “ego” customizable drive mode and the steering, suspension and chassis-adjustment buttons. It’s a trick piece; the only problem we see is trying to keep your passenger from touching it while you’re driving. It has a good action too, with pulls that feel and sound like you’re clicking gears on a quality mountain bike.div">>
The 2019 Lamborghini Urus can angle the wheels in either direction to make slow- and high-speed turns quicker.
The Lamborghini Urus, like the Porsche 911 Turbo, Audi A8 and Ferrari GT4Lusso, has rear-wheel steering. That means at slower speeds, the rear wheels turn 3 degrees in the opposite direction of the fronts, and at higher speeds, they turn in the same direction. What that does, Lamborghini chief engineer Maurizio Reggiani tells us, is virtually shorten or lengthen the wheelbase -- shorter for when the driver needs to maneuver around tight spaces, longer when the driver wants to quickly change lanes with more stability at high speeds.div">>
The Lamborghini's turbocharged V8 is connected to an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.
641-hp turbo V8
The turbocharged V8 isn’t sacrilege. It’s one of the most powerful SUVs on the market for the moment -- who knows what Ferrari, Jeep or Mercedes might do next -- and in addition to that power, the Urus comes with 627 lb-ft of torque, all of which is available at a low 2,250 rpm. That’s important, Reggiani says, because in sand, if you don’t have the torque down low where you need it, what’s the point? The Urus made it up the Moreeb dune in the United Arab Emirates, which has a height of about 1,000 feet and an angle of 50(!) degrees.div">>
The 2019 Lamborghini Urus comes standard with carbon ceramic brakes.
This is a monster machine, at least for Lamborghini. It weighs a bit less than 4,850 pounds, or about 2.5 tons. For reference, the 2017 Huracan comes in at 3,399 pounds -- Hence, it needs giant clampers. Up front, the carbon-ceramic discs measure 17.5 inches and have 10, count ‘em 10, pistons. In the back, they measure 14.5 inches and the calipers have six pistons. Those carbon-ceramics are standard, by the way. Its 60-0 stopping distance is about 110 feet. That’s just 10 feet longer than the Aventador LP700-4.
The Urus goes on sale in the U.S. in September, and Lamborghini says about one-third of production will come here, but we expect to drive it much sooner, hopefully in the dirt and sabbia, as well as on the racetrack. Stay tuned.
Jake Lingeman - Jake Lingeman is Road Test Editor at Autoweek, reviewing cars, reporting on car news, car tech and the world at large.
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