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2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ First Drive

2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ First Drive

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2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ

“Power-to-weight ratio, aerodynamics, and handling – these represent the most important pillars of a super sportscar,” stated Maurizio Reggiani, chief technical officer for Lamborghini, as he defined how the newest Aventador earned the legendary SVJ moniker that dates again to a track-focused Miura variant from the early 1970s. “You must be the best in each of these fields if you wish to have something that is truly exceptional.”

With the Aventador Superveloce Jota, Lamborghini does have one thing really distinctive. For the previous few years, the corporate’s V12 standard-bearer has needed to play second fiddle to its youthful brother, watching from the sidelines because the Huracán Performante turned the manufacturing automotive lap report holder on the Nurburgring final yr, a monitor which has turn into the usual measure of a sports activities automotive’s value in recent times.

Smaller, lighter, and outfitted with extra refined efficiency tech, the Performante boasts functionality that made the Aventador virtually appear to be a quaint grand tourer by comparability. However after Porsche rained on the Italian automaker’s parade by besting the Performante’s Nurburgring time earlier this yr, the SVJ made its presence recognized to the world by smashing the 911’s document to reclaim the highest spot.

Restricted to only 900 examples worldwide, the Aventador SVJ’s $517,770 base worth could seem as hair-raising as its visible presence. However world-class efficiency not often comes low cost, and in comparison with McLaren’s just lately launched million-dollar Senna, the SVJ looks like a relative discount.

Bradley Iger/Digital Developments

It’s a curious coincidence that each manufactures selected the Estoril circuit in Libson, Portugal, because the venue to showcase their newest tremendous sportscars: a 2.6-mile, 13-turn race course that performed host to Components One occasion through the glory days of the collection within the 1980s and 1990s.

A Technical Powerhouse

Reworking the Aventador from a supercar that was previously extra noteworthy for turning heads than for turning corners was no small activity. We received our first style of what the V12 machine was really succesful of some years in the past with the limited-production Aventador SV, which gave the large bull an earnestly track-tuned chassis and sufficient go-fast firepower to maintain tempo with the newest and biggest.

World-class efficiency is never low cost – subsequent to the million-dollar McLaren Senna, the SVJ is a discount.

The place to go from there? To enhance the automotive’s power-to-weight ratio, the event staff began with the Aventador’s 6.5-liter V12 energy plant. Output now stands at 759 horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque (up 69 hp and 22 lb-ft versus the unique Aventador) because of redesigned consumption runners, new titanium valves, cylinder head porting, and some different hot-rodding tweaks.

The SVJ additionally brings the ALA lively aero system to the Aventador for the primary time. Launched with the Performante, the system – which will get an ALA 2.zero designation within the SVJ – takes the idea of lively aerodynamics a step additional than the norm. Using motor-actuated flaps on the entrance and rear of the automotive to strategically direct airflow over the wild-yet-functional aerodynamic parts of the SVJ, the system is designed to enhance downforce on the aspect of the automotive that wants it most whereas negotiating a specific nook (often known as aero vectoring), or drag throughout high-speed blasts for larger prime speeds as wanted.

2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ first drive Bradley Iger/Digital Developments

Just like the Aventador S, the SVJ additionally will get a trick four-wheel steering system that turns the rear wheels in the other way of the entrance wheels at decrease speeds for improved agility and responsiveness, whereas at greater speeds the entrance and rear wheels all transfer in the identical course to bolster stability.

Contained in the cabin the SVJ isn’t shy about its intent. Fastened-back racing seats swathed in alcantara are available to maintain occupants in place throughout high-G lateral maneuvers, and carbon fiber is scattered all through to assist the Aventador keep a wholesome three,615-pound curb weight that’s equivalent to the SV regardless of the extra hardware required by the 4 wheel steering and aerodynamic methods.

2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ In contrast To

Three commonplace drive modes can be found – strada, sport, and corsa – which modify stability management, powertrain conduct, steering response, and suspension stiffness to assist tailor the automotive’s character for various conditions. A fourth mode, referred to as ego, can also be available as a customizable preset to permit the driving force to combine and match the varied parameters to their liking.

Driving expertise

Up entrance we have been informed we’d get three four-lap periods within the automotive, so that you higher consider we have been going to make every one among them rely. After firing up the naturally aspirated V12 – which sounds incredible although its new, SVJ-exclusive exhaust system – we converted to Corsa drive mode, which yields the sharpest steering response, stiffest suspension damper settings, a manually-controlled transmission by way of the paddle shifters, and considerably decreased intervention from the traction and stability management methods.

Yank the paddle on the proper and the recoil of a shotgun blast greets you because the gearbox delivers a brutal upshift.

By the second lap, it was clear why Lamborghini selected this venue. It really showcases the breadth of the SVJ’s functionality. Quick sweepers, technical hairpins, and high-speed kinks that put the aero vectoring functionality to good use have been all on-hand right here, in addition to an enormous entrance straight that offered us sufficient runway to succeed in about 175 mph earlier than stomping on the huge carbon ceramic brakes to arrange for the primary flip.

As destiny would have it, Estoril was utterly repaved simply two weeks earlier than the SVJ occasion, and when you may anticipate the brand new floor to offer most grip, the virgin asphalt is definitely much less sticky than tarmac with a wholesome coating of rubber is, a lot to the chagrin of Lamborghini’s occasion organizers.

However nobody was on the market making an attempt to set a quick lap time – we have been there to discover the bounds and emotive depths of this unchained Italian brute, and the recent pavement simply made the automotive that a lot livelier regardless of the all-wheel drive system’s want to maintain issues on the straight and slender. With the tires clearly signaling the bounds are we approached them, it shortly turned straightforward to modulate rotation or dial again mid-corner understeer with the throttle as wanted, and wailing of a lot rubber solely added to the aural assault that might usually be dominated by the V12 mounted instantly behind our ears.

2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ first drive Bradley Iger/Digital Tendencies

There are a number of basic quirks that the Aventador hasn’t managed to shrug off, although. Beneath arduous braking from excessive speeds there’s a barely unsettling feeling that the again finish needs to bop by itself, as if all that mass again there – now unloaded – is on the lookout for a spot to go. It by no means equated to rather more than an eyebrow increase at velocity, however it’s attribute value pondering.

Then there’s the gearbox which, at this level, feels two generations behind the newest dual-clutch models you’ll discover in automobiles just like the 911 in addition to Lamborghin’s personal Huracan. Reggiani argued that weight, packaging issues, and tech availability on the time of the unique Aventador’s improvement have been all elements within the choice to go together with this single-clutch seven-speed unit. Whereas that’s undoubtedly true, and it’s certainly higher in SVJ than it has ever been earlier than, it doesn’t change the truth that the transmission is an goal weak level for the Aventador SVJ.

Bradley Iger/Digital Developments

At wide-open throttle close to redline its lack of refinement truly provides to the enjoyable: yank the paddle on the proper and the recoil of a shotgun blast greets you because the gearbox delivers a vicious upshift and people twelve cylinders howl. Right here it’s in its factor, and that old-school, bolt-action brutality is definitely endearing. However deviate from these circumstances and also you’ll typically be greeted with a really noticeable hole in energy supply between gear modifications that feels just like the automotive is punishing you for going off-script.

How DT would configure this automotive

Contemplating manufacturing is restricted to only 900 models, it’s comprehensible that the Aventador SVJ doesn’t necessitate a very large choices sheet. Nevertheless, the optionally available telemetry system and super-sticky Pirelli Trofeo R rubber look like must-haves for any critical monitor rat.

Lamborghini additionally factors out that the inside specs for the Aventador SVJ are “virtually limitless” by way of its Advert Personam customization program. Simply ensure you maintain these uncovered carbon fiber door playing cards – they appear superior.


In the course of the debrief after our monitor session within the automotive, the dialog naturally turned to the way forward for Lamborghini’s flagship. Would the corporate lastly bend to the developments of the business, maybe shifting to smaller displacement engines supplemented by pressured induction? “It will be a naturally aspirated V12 for as long as possible – I will fight it to the end!” Reggiani declared.

The room immediately broke into roaring applause.

“A sports car is not the sum of many different statistics,” Reggiani stated. “It’s the final result that you generate with those numbers. For us and everybody else, the final result is that [Nurburgring] lap time. And the best time currently possible is coming from a naturally aspirated V12 with all this aerodynamic and chassis control.”

Whereas the Aventador’s platform is beginning to present its age, Lamborghini has actually carried out some magic with the SVJ. In an period of muted turbocharging and rising civility within the realm of supercars, the Aventador SVJ is an outlier in the absolute best approach. The truth that it’s additionally probably the most monitor succesful road-going manufacturing automotive in historical past solely provides to its rebellious appeal – in addition to Lamborghini’s legacy.