SANT'AGATA BOLOGNESE, Italy — Lamborghini unveiled its 186-mph Urus SUV last week and will begin sales next spring. The 650-hp, 200,000-plus euro ($237,000) Urus is poised to enter at the top of the ultraluxury SUV segment, which includes the 608-hp, 182,000 euro Bentley Bentayga and the 629-hp, 282,000 euro Mercedes-Benz G 65 AMG.
Aston Martin, Ferrari and Rolls-Royce plan to join the fast-growing sector in the coming years.
Lamborghini plans to build about 1,000 units of the SUV next year, then increase volume to 3,500 annually in 2019, with the option to grow to 4,000 units if demand is higher, CEO Stefano Domenicali said. That level of output for one model would exceed Lamborghini's best-ever production year for the entire brand.
Maurizio Reggiani, Lamborghini's r&d director, told Automotive News Europe his bosses had very high expectations from the start of the Urus project.
"We were given a very challenging target: make the production Urus the best-performing vehicle in its category with the best weight-to-power ratio," Reggiani said. "We accomplished this."
After the Urus concept debuted at the Beijing auto show in 2012, Reggiani's target weight for the production Urus was below 2,000 kg (4,400 pounds) and his power goal was 600 hp. The final product weighs a little below 2,200 kg but its power has risen to 650 hp. As a result, the production Urus' weight-to-power ratio is 3.38 kg per hp, not far from the 3.33 figure that would have resulted from the 2000 kg/600 hp target.
"The Urus' wheelbase is 3,003 mm (about 10 feet), but by adjusting the rear wheels by three degrees in both directions, the driver obtains the effect of a virtual wheelbase that extends or shortens by 600 mm (2 feet), thus increasing stability during high-speed cornering and improving maneuverability during slow turns," Reggiani said.
The Urus comes standard with active front and rear anti-roll bars that are linked to a 48-volt battery system to improve responsiveness.