What's hot: The hottest-looking car on the planet, prodigious handling and sense of intent; the fastest production Lamborghini ever, fabulous V12, 0-100km/h in 2.8 seconds.
What's not: Living in Australia. US price of $US400,995 sounds like a Black Friday bargain next to our $882,650. Is it worth as much as a garage full of Porsche 911s?
X-FACTOR: This car attracts attention like setting fire to yourself; stunning in pictures, it's absurd in the flesh.
Vehicle style: Super-sports coupe
Price: Yes, the price: let's just mention it again - $882,650, a huge amount of which is Luxury Car Tax. In Europe, where you could actually enjoy driving it, it's only 327,190 Euros.
Engine/trans: 6.5-litre V12; 552kW/690Nm; 7-spd automated manual.
The thing with having super powers is that it makes other people seem even more annoying and stupid.
For a super car like the Lamborghini Aventador Superveloce LP750-4, other more-normal cars look like little more than insignificant, and slightly pathetic, mobile chicanes.
But you'll be spared sharing a road, much less a freeway, with such lesser beings.
Because the fastest production Lambo ever produced will be too much of a challenge to drive on public roads. Simply, its power and performance - 552kW, 690Nm, 0 to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds - belongs in a different world.
On a race track, basically.
This is at least partly why the new SV was launched on the F1-hosting Circuit de Catalunya, the other reason being that the car is so hard riding and firm-seated that driving it on the road might feel like being beaten with a stick.
Realistically, though, the track is the only place you can fully appreciate a vehicle that will hit 200km/h from a standing start in just 8.6 seconds, or 300km/h in an astonishing 24 seconds. And that's what this car will do.
As one engineer commented, you can only really appreciate how much better the SV is than the standard, and now four years old, Aventador, when you accelerate hard from 160km/h.
To get that extra shove, Lamborghini jammed another 42kW into the car and scraped out 50kg (down to 1525kg) by removing all of the carpets, most of the sound-deadening and even the infotainment system.
The term “power-to-weight ratio” becomes entirely visceral in a car like this, with the experience made more raw, and roar, by that boned-out interior.
This is a Lambo of serious intent, with a seriously large rear wing forming part of an aero upgrade that sees vertical downforce increase by a whopping 150 per cent.
The SV grips as well as it goes, and it goes like hell.
- Alcantara steering wheel, seats (with optional super-light Carbon Skin coverings).
- Carbon-fibre door skins and visible chassis parts in cabin.
- Giant new bright yellow TFT race-car style screen.
- Slashy SV logos all over the place.
When the cost of your car approaches the $1 million mark, you might expect the interior to be opulent, almost sensuous, and possibly diamond-studded or gold plated.
You get none of this in the Aventador SV. Nor do you even get the small luxuries you'll find in cars one twentieth the price, like carpets, sound-deadening materials and a stereo/infotainment system.
The latter has been deleted to save weight; you can have one if you insist, as a no-cost option (but good luck hearing it).
No tizz and glamour in this basic, stripped out, racy interior. This workbench is all about the track (and driving the wheels off).
So, what you do get is heaps of exposed carbon fibre and a sexy looking giant yellow screen, with a G-force meter, which comes in handy.
Otherwise, all of the non-essentials are gone, partly to remove weight and partly because you want to hear the big V12 in all its glory.
The one feature difficult to live with, though, are the special, wafer-thing racing bucket seats.
These are as hard as a bed of nails, and only slightly more comfortable.
Yes, they support brilliantly around fast corners on a track, but if you're driving to the shops, or, worse, interstate (quell horreur!), they'll be a nightmare.
Vision, as you can probably tell by looking at the car, is also severely limited, particularly behind.
ON THE ROAD
- Naturally aspirated 6.5-litre V12 engine making 559kW and 690Nm.
- Seven-speed automated manual transmission.
- 0 - 100km/h 2.8 seconds
We're giving this Lambo five stars under the heading “on the road”.
This of course is slightly misleading, because our drive was ‘track only' (“Take all this fire-power out onto a public road? Surely you jest, sir.”).
But for the peerless way it tears up a race track, the Aventador SV simply has to get the maximum score.
The SV was launched at the same huge racing complex that F1 cars do their off-season testing, and one race per year at, the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.
This circuit has a seriously long front straight, down which our cars would easily have hit 300km/h.
For this launch however, the pace cars leading us around were instructed to slow things down a little coming on to the home stretch, so we could only touch 250km/h.
What was more impressive was the way the race-spec Aventador speared into the far shorter back straight, which only felt about 100m long in this rocketship, but must be almost 800m.
Coming out of a long, slow, G-forcing corner on to this short drag strip at barely 100km/h, the SV exploded to more than 235km/h with the kind of absurdly violent fury that makes your mouth go dry and your eyes water.
Truly, the acceleration of this harder, faster Aventador is punishingly wonderful.
Lighter, yet more powerful - another 42kW from an already staggering engine - produces a power-to-weight ratio of one whole horsepower for every 2.0kg of car (and even with a light-ish 1525kg kerb weight, that's a whole lot of horses).
Joyously, you need to almost hit the redline at 8400rpm to achieve max power. Getting there is mental once you've built up the nerve to actually flatten the big metal throttle.
The noise, when you do so, puts modern F1 cars to shame and is as deafening as it is mean.
You literally cannot hear someone speaking right next to you when an SV flies down the straight. It's fantastic.
The carbon ceramic brakes do a creditable job of hauling things down from light-speed - 100km/h to zero takes just 30 metres - but the car is so fast that you still feel like you're working the stoppers hard.
What the Superveloce does best of all, though, is corner.
This is thanks to vast improvements in its aerodynamic design, most obviously that giant carbon-fibre rear wing and the massive diffuser at the back of the car.
That track-smacking pressure it produces means you feel totally planted to the tarmac at all times, and thus safe to hold stupidly high speeds through long bends, and thus put your body under serious pressure.
And all the while, at a blur, happening almost faster than you can think, is the brilliant feedback from the SV's new Dynamic Steering package.
It's so much fun that it hurts.
It is simply an astonishing experience to drive this car hard, and there really is no other way to drive it.
What should feel unsafe, even terrifying, seems almost easily achievable, simply because of the levels of grip and power you have at your hands.
Clearly, this is a car made to live and breathe, and scream, at a race track.
Sure, there's every chance that it will be a painful experience to drive on an actual road. It's simply too hard, too raw and too fast for our public thoroughfares, and the seats are not designed for long, boring trips.
Comfort is not the aim of this car. It's only real goal is sensational speed.
HOW IT COMPARES
Those lucky people who managed to drive the basic, road-going Aventador against its only obvious competitor, the Ferrari F12, say it was a straightforward victory to the prancing horse.
But this new SV version might well change the balance of the battle.
The Ferrari wins some points for being more liveable, more luxurious, and, to some people at least, less alarming to look at.
But in a track battle you'd have to think it would be very close indeed.
In fact, in many ways, it's fair to say that the Aventador Superveloce has no genuine competitors, because there's nothing else quite like it.
TMR VERDICT | OVERALL
The original Aventador, launched some four years ago, was an impressive, intensive piece of automotive engineering, and not one that ever felt slow or looked dull.
Yet somehow the Superveloce version has lifted the bar in every single way, and even manages to make the original look a bit plain, feel a bit lardy and sound a bit restrained.
The Aventador has its critics, but it's harder to criticise the SV, particularly if you analyse it as purely a track car. Which is clearly what it is.
You might be able to register it for the road, but it's hard to find a sensible reason why you'd do so.
In terms of performing its intended function - making people gape, seeing their eyes pop out of their heads, either just by gazing at its sublime razor-edged form or through the visceral experience of driving one on a circuit - it has absolutely nailed it.
More power, better steering, faster gear changes (down to just 50 milliseconds in Corsa mode), higher downforce, the SV is simply a better car in every way, and a brilliant one in most.
The price is, however, a bit of a barrier - like visiting the moon - for most of us.
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