The V12 lives.
The replacement for the Lamborghini Aventador will continue to use a naturally-aspirated V12 engine, albeit with hybrid assistance, when it debuts next year.
Lamborghini’s chief technical officer told Car and Driver the V12 is a crucial part of any flagship Bull’s character, and has been since the launch of the Miura. That’s why it’ll live on in the Aventador’s replacement.
“The V12 has been part of the story of Lamborghini since the very beginning,” Maurizio Reggiani said.
“It has been present in every year of our history, which is why our strategy and our vision for the future is to continue to have a V-12 coupled with a hybrid motor.”
Reggiani also underscored the importance of a naturally-aspirated engine in a Lamborghini.
“I remember when I started working in Modena, the people I learned from told me that naturally aspirated engines are how you prove engineering is good because nothing helps you,” he told Car and Driver.
Naturally-aspirated engines remain important to the brand not just for their driving characteristics but also for the music they make.
“When you have a turbo you have a damper on the sound, like a muffler. It is filtered by the turbo, and you end up trying to use artificial sound to reproduce what should be spontaneous and natural,” he added.
The addition of a hybrid system will not only help Lamborghini meet tougher CO2 targets; Reggiani also noted how an electric motor can improve performance.
“You can add performance, but you can also fill in the weaknesses of the naturally aspirated engine, especially where torque is weak,” he explained.
He also suggested the Aventador replacement could use electric torque vectoring, à la the Ferrari SF90, which he described as “like a dream for engineering”.
Lamborghini has already introduced a hybridised V12 powertrain in its Sián.
Introduced last year, the mild-hybrid Sián mates the Aventador SVJ’s 6.5-litre naturally-aspirated V12 engine to a 25kW electric motor located in the transmission.
With 602kW of power and a 0-100km/h time of 2.8 seconds, it’s the fastest Lamborghini to date.