2015 Lamborghini Huracan Details:
Electronics Three-setting "ANIMA" controls engine, trans, AWD, stability control, and suspension | 12.3-inch TFT screen with three display modes | Navigation integrated in driver's instruments
+ Pros Dual-clutch transmission | All-day comfort from adjustable suspension | New infotainment system
- Cons No manual option | Variable-ratio steering to be avoided | ANIMA manages settings together, but not individually
The outgoing Lamborghini Gallardo was a juggernaut of a supercar, moving 14,022 units over its decade-long production run. The wedge-shaped V10 sports car enjoyed a fervent following among those disinterested (or priced out of) the flagship scissor-doored 12-cylinder models. Its success spawned a myriad of high-performance, limited editions, including a final rear-drive 50th Anniversary model that nostalgically hat-tipped the past with an old-school, three-pedal metal-gated manual transmission.
Despite the Gallardo's strong following and even stronger horsepower, Lamborghini was looking to the future when it embraced the all-new Huracan-named after a Spanish fighting bull known for its courage and valor.
This Gallardo replacement packs a slew of technological firsts for the Sant'Agata Bolognese brand, yet the soul of the Lamborghini Huracan remains intact-thanks to its signature, naturally aspirated, V10 configuration. And in an era when Ferrari, McLaren, and Porsche have all embraced turbos, it sets the Italian brand philosophically apart from the crowd.
We can't think of another marque (apart from Aston Martin) that has stuck to its naturally aspirated guns, and that's a good thing for those who love a quick throttle response and a lusty exhaust note.
Second, and perhaps equally significant, is the introduction of Lamborghini's first dual-clutch transmission and electronically adjustable damping system, which aims to expand the Lamborghini Huracan bandwidth into everyday-driver territory.
Our first drive of the Lamborghini Huracan took us to the rolling hills of Southern Spain, with Ascari Race Resort's 3.36-mile circuit serving as the backdrop for the car's newfound performance.
Climb inside the latest Lambo, and you're surrounded by a more delicately proportioned interior that features high-concept design enhancements. It includes switchgear incorporated into the flat-bottomed steering wheel-Ferrari style.
Motorcyclists will appreciate the turn signal setup, which mimics the left/right/press-for-reset arrangement found on bikes.
The most crucial switch is for the "ANIMA" (short for Adaptive Network Intelligent Management"). It's positioned at 6 o'clock on the steering wheel and accesses three modes: Strada, Sport, and Corsa. Anima means "soul" in Italian, and the settings do indeed affect the personality of the Lamborghini Huracan at a fairly deep level, with each mode offering sharper damping, throttle response, suspension, and stability control settings.
Immediately out of pit lane, the dual-clutch transmission's smoothness reflects a dramatic departure from Gallardos of old: smooth, clean, and quick. These shifts remind us of the transformation enjoyed by the Audi R8 when it switched from the maddening R-Tronic gearbox to its dual clutch.
Also remarkably different is the Huracan driver interface, which now fills the driver's instrument cluster with a configurable TFT screen.
In its sportiest setting, a big digital depiction of an analog tachometer (refreshed 60 times a second) sits front and center, just as you'd expect in a high-dollar supercar. Switch to a less aggressive setting, and the navigation screen becomes juxtaposed next to smaller speedo and tach indicators.
When negotiating the first few corners of Ascari in manual transmission mode, it takes time to adjust to the tachometer's refresh rate; as the "needle" shoots toward the 8,500-rpm redline, split-second reflexes are required to anticipate taps of the large, cool-to-the-touch paddles before the screaming V10 bangs against the rev-limiter.
Once you become accustomed to the blink-of-an-eye timing, the Lamborghini Huracan starts to feel spiritually similar to -but friendlier and more capable than- its predecessor.
The chassis and suspension have a new level of refinement, enabling easier rotation and more feedback when the fat Pirellis start to give up the ghost. Reassuringly, the V10 still roars with a deliciously saucy scream, delivering a sonic quality that would be sorely missed if Lamborghini ever deigned to fit turbochargers.
Several sessions later, the Huracan still feels like it retains an air of edginess at the limit, with the tail kicking out under heavy throttle and the nose tucking during mid-corner brake stabs, but it's on the road where the other side of its personality becomes evident.
After an obligatory tire change and brake fluid bleed by Lamborghini mechanics, we hit Spain's rambling country roads with a heavy right foot and an eye for local law enforcement. Strada mode, it turns out, is a bit too tame, even for the street; in order to optimize smoothness, the shifts are a tad lazy, and the steering feels slow and somewhat dull.
Sport, on the other hand, offers a sharper and satisfying middle ground, delivering crispness without the razor's edge reactivity of Corsa. We still prefer a traditional, non-variable steering setup (thankfully, the variable steering assist and adjustable suspension setups are optional), but the Huracan's greater power, lower weight, and more tractable road manners certainly make it feel like a significant evolution from its Gallardo ancestors.
The adjustable, adaptive suspension is also one of the new Lambo's winning formulae, as it removes the bone-jarring, always-on calibration with a setup that softens the miles during long-haul driving.
Sharp, angular, and viscerally satisfying, the Lamborghini Huracan manages to fill the Gallardo's big shoes with a decidedly high-tech yet familiar cocktail of performance, soul, and adjustability. But the best is yet to come: We anticipate that when the inevitable Huracan Superleggera is unveiled, we'll see this entry-level Lamborghini shine at its brightest.
Tech Spec2015 Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4
5,204 cc V10 40v with direct-injection
Seven-speed dual-clutch transmission
Six-piston calipers, 380mm rotors f, four-piston, 356mm r
Aluminum double-wishbone f&r
Wheels & Tires
20x8.5" f, 20x11" r wheels; 245/30 R20 f, 305/30 R20 r
602 hp at 8,250 rpm
413 lb-ft at 6,500 rpm
15/21 mpg (est)
$245,000 (inc D&D, est)
Additional Photos by Lamborghini