First hybrid Lamborghini is fastest car ever for brand, uses supercapacitor for boost to 819 hp
Lamborghini unveiled its latest super sports car at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA) in Germany Sept. 10, and wow, is it full of firsts. The limited-edition Sián FKP 37 is the luxe Italian automaker's first hybrid supercar, fastest ever for the brand, and the first to use a supercapacitor (instead of lithium-ion batteries) to boost its extra e-motor to a whopping 819 hp. There are lots of other impressive tech touches to boot. It's even got wings.
Sián can mean "lightning" or "flash" in the Italian Bolognese dialect, so the name is full of connotations for the new Lamborghini creation (ideas, speed, power, inspiration, electrification, etc.). And it's very cool and very current in terms of design, which will go a long way for its lucky owners -- all 63 of them worldwide.
VIDEO: Sián unveiling at Frankfurt Motor Show.
The Sián is built around the brand's iconic naturally aspirated V12 Lamborghini power plant but is also engineered around unique hybrid technologies. It's "the first step on our electrification strategy," says Maurizio Reggiani, the brand's chief technical officer.
The 6.5-liter V12 incorporates titanium intake valves and is uprated to 785 hp (577 kW) at 8,500 rpm -- the highest output ever from a Lamborghini power plant. The car is a seven-speed automatic with adaptive shift.
From the hybrid side of things, a 48-V electric motor (e-motor) coupled with a supercapacitor delivers an additional 34 hp. This unit has been incorporated into the gearbox to provide immediate response and improved performance. According to the Sián engineers, it's the first time in any low-voltage hybrid that this type of direct connection has been made between electric motor and wheels. The e-motor also supports low-speed maneuvers such as reversing and parking with electric power.
According to CNET, the supercapacitor is three times lighter and three times more powerful than an equivalent Li-ion battery that produces the same power.
Combined with the additional 34 hp from the hybrid system, the car delivers a total of 819 hp (602 kW). Its weight-to-power ratio is better than that of the brand's Aventador SVJ, achieved through extensive use of lightweight materials. The Sián reaches a top speed of over 217 mph (350 km/h).
The Sián incorporates a highly advanced regenerative braking system, specially developed by Lamborghini. Thanks to the symmetric behavior of the supercapacitor, which contrary to normal Li-ion batteries can be charged and discharged with the same power, the Sián's energy storage system is fully charged every time the vehicle brakes. The energy stored becomes an instantly available power boost, allowing the driver to draw immediately on increased torque when accelerating -- up to 80 mph (130 km/h) when the e-motor automatically disconnects. Lamborghini says this makes the car more than 10 percent faster than a car without the system.
This unique setup also provides instant acceleration in low gears, with improved traction force provided by the combination of the V12 engine and the hybrid system. This makes the Sián the fastest-accelerating Lamborghini ever, achieving 0 to 100 km/h in less than 2.8 sec. Traction force is improved by up to 10 percent in third gear, and the 30- to 60-km/h acceleration time is improved by 0.2 sec compared to the Aventador SVJ (see Designfax August 28, 2018). In higher gears and lower speeds, the electric motor increases traction force by up to 20 percent, reducing the 70- to 120-km/h acceleration by 1.2 sec compared to the Aventador SVJ.
As for the exterior, the silhouette includes some new carbon fiber aero wings at the back, which help give the Sián a signature profile. Many of the design elements are futuristic updates inspired by the Lamborghini Countach, which was produced from 1974 to 1990. (See, you knew some things looked familiar!)
The iconic Lamborghini "Y" shape can be seen in the NACA air inlets on the doors, glass elements are included in the engine cover, and the diagonal line features in the front hood. The low front with integrated carbon fiber splitter is dominated by the Y-shape headlights originally designed for the Lamborghini Terzo Millennio.
Carbon fiber trim and accents run all around the car, from front to back and all along the sides. Even the two winglets at the back (which bear the number 63 for the year Lamborghini was founded and also the production run of the car), are made of carbon fiber.
In the roof, the "Periscopio" tunnel adds a bold feature that links with the slats of the rear engine cover and important elements contributing to the car's aerodynamic efficiency.
The rear design incorporates the Lamborghini hexagonal design that is a hallmark of the brand, including six hexagonal tail lights. The rear wing is integrated within the profile, and extends out only during driving to enhance performance.
Doors are flip-up wing types.
Optimized for aerodynamic efficiency, airflow is directed through the front splitters and through the front end, through the side air intakes and outlets, and over the rear spoiler. The Lamborghini Sián also makes use of some unique material science for the first time in an automotive application. Active cooling vanes on the rear deck -- four integrated flaps that look like they are at the base of an alien spine -- use Lamborghini-patented technology to move. The operation of the vanes is triggered by the reaction of smart-material elements to the temperature generated by the exhaust system, causing them to rotate and provide an elegant and lightweight extra cooling solution.
The high-end interior is surprisingly homey -- a purposeful contrast to the high-tech, angular, and aggressive design of the exterior. It's filled with super-comfy aniline leather in a "Terra di Sant'Agata Bolognese" Italian-earth color and even more carbon fiber accents, and includes 3D-printed air vents -- another first for the brand. The whole driver control deck has been completely redesigned and re-engineered for this car. It is surprisingly minimalist and downright classy.
The configuration for the car shown at the Frankfurt show was done in Verde Gea (green) with details in Oro Electrum (electric gold). The paint is done in a precious multilayer color containing golden flakes and golden crystals. Fancy!
VIDEO: Auto enthusiast Tim Burton (Shmee150) gives an in-depth tour of the Lamborghini Sián at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Thanks, Tim!
Mitja Borkert, Head of Centro Stile at Lamborghini, in the new Sián.
At a price of over $2.2 million plus taxes, each owner will get to specify their unique car -- with tons of options, colors, and combinations available -- in conjunction with Lamborghini's Centro Stile and Ad Personam team. The bad news is that all 63 units have already sold out. The good news is that Lamborghini is sure to have another special edition that will wow fans soon.