Lamborghini Gallardo review
A round of tweaks to the Lamborghini Gallardo has produced the faster, sharper and more eye-catching LP560-4
The Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 looks every inch the supercar, and it has the perfomance to back it up. Peer beneath the car’s glass engine cover and you’ll spot the mighty 552bhp 5.2-litre V10 powerplant. Mated to a permanent four-wheel drive system it serves-up scintillating performance, with the Coupe model able to scorch from 0-60mph in just 3.7 seconds, and on to a top speed of 202mph. Such incredible performance needs a suitably spine-tingling sound track – and the Lambo doesn’t disappoint, with a guttural low-rev bark that turns into an addictive howl as speeds rises.
Our choice: 5.2 V12 Coupe
With its sharp angles and short overhangs the LP560-4 screams performance and turns heads everywhere it goes. The front end takes its inspiration from the Reventon supercar, while the Y shaped LED running lights and large quad exhausts complete the jaw-dropping look. Buyers wanting high-speed wind-in-the-hair thrills can pick the Spyder model. It comes with a standard power-folding fabric roof, and an extra dose of look-at-me road presence.
There’s no denying that a stint behind the wheel of the LP560-4 is a special experience. The huge reserves of power and sharp throttle response mean acceleration is blistering at any speed. Turn into a corner you’ll discover well-weighted and direct steering, while the four-wheel drive system manages to combine secure handling with plenty of driver involvement. Buyers can opt for the £7,000 e.gear semi-automatic transmission, which delivers savagely fast gear changes and gorgeous throttle blips on down shifts. Purists will want to save the cash and opt for the manual option with its traditional exposed metal gate that gives a charismatic ‘click-clack’ every time you swap ratios.
Four airbags are fitted as standard, along with electronic stability control and huge ABS-backed brakes. Buyers with an eye on the environment should steer clear. Lamborghini claims the incredible V10 produces 18 per cent less CO2 than the smaller unit in the outgoing Gallardo, which sounds impressive. However, in reality the Lambo still pushes out an extremely unhealthy 327g/km.
Not so long the cabin of a Lamborghini was dominated by its flimsy build and confusing dashboard layout. However, parent company Audi has worked hard to rectify these faults and the LP560’s interior is a pleasing blend of quality German switchgear and Italian style. There’s plenty of room for two, despite the low-slung seating position – although some drivers might find the footwell a little cramped. Luggage capacity is minimal at 110-litres, so you’ll need to travel light!
It goes without saying that buying a Lamborghini is the preserve of the very wealthy. Even in basic trim you’ll be spending more than a first-time buyer forks out on a house! Then there’s the costly options list that includes £9,700 ceramic brakes and the e.gear transmission that’ll add £7,000 to the bill. Maintenance costs are huge too, while fuel returns of around 15mpg means plenty of time spent on filling station forecourts.