The Lamborghini V12 engine will live on for another generation (albeit in hybrid form) – and if the Italian brand’s CEO is right, it should also sound just as good as the Aventador it replaces.

    With global legislators the hell-bent on killing the internal-combustion engine in favour of electric vehicles (EVs), Lamborghini this week managed to score a little victory, alongside brands like Ferrari.

    The Italian Government managed to secure an exemption for the brand to continue producing and selling internal-combustion engine vehicles past the 2035 deadline facing the rest of the industry.

    That might just mean the V12 as we know it could continue to live in for generations to come… but what’s the point of a V12 if it doesn’t sound like one?

    According to Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann, who spoke to CarExpert at the launch of the Huracan Tecnica in Italy last week, the new V12 will sound “amazing”.

    Mr Winkelmann admitted any restrictions to the sound of current and incoming Lamborghini models are purely to meet regulations, and said the brand’s approach to hybridisation is as much about reducing emissions as it is about performance and emotion.

    “For us the hybridisation is about increasing sustainability and reducing emissions, but also about increasing performance compared to today… [however] emotion, and fun, and performance orientation is paramount,” Mr Winkelmann said.

    As for the new V12 hybrid compared to the outgoing Aventador? “We will design one to cover everything and I have heard the sound of the new V12 and it’s going to be amazing,” he said.

    “I think the engineers have done a good job. It’s not just about the engine, but the exhaust system and how you get the sound out of the car, which should never be fake in my opinion.”

    Emissions and noise regulations in Europe – petrol particulate filters, startup sound restrictions, and the revs at which engines are allowed to make unrestricted noise – will impact all new vehicles, but if the new Lamborghini V12 can sing the tune of a glorious F1 car of old at 9000rpm, it will make plenty of customers and fans of the brand happy.

    That’s exactly what Mr Winkelmann intends to do.  

    “For me the brand has to maintain the character today to fulfil the dream of the people. Both the fans and the customers,” he said.

    On another note, with Ferrari expected to put its naturally-aspirated V12 in its upcoming Purosangue SUV, Mr Winkelmann confirmed Lamborghini will not follow suit with the Urus. He said Ferrari’s move into the SUV space confirms “they acknowledge that we were right”, however.

    “Everyone has to make up their mind about what they want to achieve and how they want to develop their company,” he said.

    “We have a lot of similar customers but we have different history and everybody has enough space to develop the things that he thinks are good when the time is right.”

    Do you believe the next-generation Lamborghini V12 hybrid will sound as good as the current Aventador?

    Alborz Fallah

    Alborz is the founder of CarAdvice (sold to Nine and now Drive) and co-founder of CarExpert. He is an honourary adjunct professor & entrepreneur in residence at the University of QLD. He loves naturally-aspirated V8s, V10s and V12s and is in denial about the impending death of the internal combustion engine. The best way to reach him is via Instagram.

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