The beast is back! Auto Express has learned that Lamborghini is planning a triumphant return to the off-road segment.
Industry insiders tell us that the Italian firm is currently developing a high-performance SUV, based on the same platform as the Audi Q5 and Porsche’s forthcoming Cajun, which we revealed in Issue 1,138.
The high-riding machine will be Lambo’s first 4x4 since the monstrous LM002. That car, designed for military use, was powered by the V12 engine from the Countach. The new SUV – dubbed LM00X – is more likely to get the new 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 that will debut in the Audi S7 next year, tuned to give in excess of 550bhp.
That will be good for a 0-62mph sprint time of less than four seconds, and means the car will easily outpace the Cayenne Turbo S. Although the Cajun’s three-door layout will be retained, the LM00X’s styling will be inspired by the brand’s supercars, making it instantly recognisable as a member of the Lamborghini family.
To keep weight down, the carbon technology seen on the Sesto Elemento concept at last month’s Paris Motor Show is expected to be used. Suspension, brakes and dampers will all be specially developed to cope with the power on tap, but not all of the focus will be on-road.
The LM002 had tyres with carbon fibre sidewalls for driving through sand, and Lambo started to develop a racer to compete in the Dakar Rally. The new car should be equally capable as it will borrow some of Porsche’s adaptive chassis systems.
The LM00X is set to cost well over £100,000 when it goes on sale in 2012. With no direct rivals from other supercar makers, it should be a hit.