Thursday, January 24, 2013

Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 Roadster - A First Look 2013

We knew it was only a matter of time before Lamborghini unleashed an open-air version of its menacing Aventador -- especially after the debut of the topless Aventador J concept at the 2012 Geneva auto show that ultimately sold for $2.8 million to an undisclosed buyer. That time is now. The House of the Raging Bull has announced the production of the 2013 Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 Roadster for the masses of one-percenters. Of course, the biggest change to the Aventador Roadster is its removable roof, which consists of two carbon-fiber panels weighing roughly 13.2 pounds each that Lamborghini says can be easily taken off and stored in the front luggage compartment. The car's rear pillar has been reinforced to handle its slight loss of structural integrity and accommodate the Aventador LP 700-4 Roadster's rollover protection and engine-ventilation systems. 2013 Lamborghini Aventador Roadster Front View Aside from the removable roof, the biggest visual difference between the Aventador hardtop and the Roadster is its unique engine cover. Its distinguishing features are twin vented hexagonal windows and a center "spinal column" running down the middle, showcasing the same wicked 6.5-liter V-12 with 691 horsepower and 509 lb-ft of torque as its coupe sibling. The Roadster's A-pillars, windshield header, roof panels, and rear window area feature a gloss-black finish designed to further augment the supercar's lines. You can control the amount of aural insanity from the Aventador Roadster's monstrous V-12 thanks to a power rear window that also helps improve cabin airflow. The Lambo press release says the Roadster's attachable wind deflector delivers "almost complete calm" at higher speeds - like there's anything calm about raging around in an Aventador. As is the case with the roof panels, the deflector can also be stowed in the front compartment when the top is back on. The Aventador Roadster also gets its own launch color, a new metallic blue dubbed Azzuro Thetis, whose color and shade varies, depending on the angle and intensity of the light. The color reportedly was inspired by the 1968 Miura Roadster concept shown at that year's Brussels auto show. The Roadster also gets special interior enhancements, specifically liberal use of leather called Sabbia Nefertem that Lambo says complements the Azzuro Thetis sheen. 2013 Lamborghini Aventador Roadster Top Down View Being a Lamborghini and an Aventador, the experience is first and foremost about performance, and the Roadster will not disappoint -- at least in a straight line. Sending its 691 horsepower through Lamborghini's integrated shifting rod, seven-speed, automated single-clutch manual transmission to all four wheels, 0-60 comes in fewer than 3 seconds, with a top speed of more than 217 mph, according to Lamborghini. The Roadster's unique 20-inch front, 21-inch rear Dione forged aluminum wheels also help shave some 22 pounds over the Aventador hardtop's wheel/tire setup. We've driven and tested the coupe version of the Aventador several times over the past year, most notably during our 2012 Motor Trend Best Driver's Car competition. And while it was an absolute beast from 0-60 (2.9 seconds) and set a blistering 10.3-second quarter mile time at 132.3 mph, our editors were less than thrilled with its transmission, brake fade after a few laps at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, and overall bulky feel. But despite its flaws, the Aventador is a mechanical menace that commands respect by its very presence, and the Roadster should do the same. 2013 Lamborghini Aventador Roadster Side View  
While approximately no one who buys the Aventador Roadster is necessarily worried about how it furiously belches out greenhouse gases, Lamborghini has applied state-of-the-art technologies make its big bull as efficient as possible. Like the coupe, the engine includes a cylinder deactivation system, enabling the engine to run on only six cylinders in cruising and low-load conditions, and employs what Lamborghini is claiming is the industry-first use of super-capacitors in a series-production car to enable lightning-quick response from its auto stop-start system. The Aventador Roadster is available for order worldwide at Lamborghini dealers at a starting price of $441,600 (which goes up to $445,300 once you add $3700 in gas guzzler tax) -- a considerable jump over the $407,000 Aventador coupe we tested at Best Driver's Car topped $407,000, not that its price matters to the folks with the cash to actually buy one.

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