2019 Lamborghini Urus

Ladies and Gentlemen welcome to world’s first ever ‘Super Sports Utility Vehicle’ or what’s now known as SSUV. The road to get here may have been long, but Lamborghini has finally pulled off what could most possibly be the most insane, craziest and wild SUV in the market today. You may be wondering - “Why would Lamborghini build an SUV?” A question a lot of us motoring journalist been asking since the Urus was announced some years back, and the simple answer to that is.. Why not? The demand is there, so is the technology and it’s not as if the ever-passionate Italians need a particularly good reason to do anything in the first place. Those are the exact reasons why we love Italian vehicles: A V8 motorcycle? Sì Grazie (Yes Please). A wedge-shaped sports car that you can’t see out of in any direction other than straight?  Sì Grazie. Take decades of boundary-pushing exotic supercar design principles and apply them all to an SUV platform? Not only will the Italians make that work but at the same time they’ll create a whole new segment and this is what you’ll get - A 2.2-ton SUV which defies all the laws of motoring.

Inside and Out

If the proportions of the Urus seem slightly familiar to you, don’t worry, you’re not imagining things. Lamborghini’s new sport-utility-vehicle is underpinned by Volkswagen’s MLBevo architecture, a platform that the Urus shares with the Porsche Cayenne, Audi Q8, Bentley Bentayga and Volkswagen Touareg. But having said that, the aesthetics, however, is a clear departure from its corporate siblings and is pure Lamborghini in its own right. The sharp angular design language of the Urus clearly draws inspiration from the Huracan and Aventador, highlighted by a sloping roofline seen on most Sport SUV and an aggressive front face that makes the Urus’s performance intentions very, very clear. From any perspective you look at it - this SUV will definitely stand out in a crowd. Inside the Urus, you’ll find Lamborghini venturing into new territory as well. This is without a doubt, the most luxurious cabin the Italian automaker has ever made, emphasizing on comfort, ultra-high-end materials and premium technology (which we’ll talk about later). Function follows form, especially in the fighter jet-style mode/gear selector apparatus. The Urus is capable of hauling five-passengers easily and is designed to accommodate passengers up to 6’7” upfront, while the rear seats provide headroom for folks up to 6’3”. In the boot, cargo space is plenty and can stow enough cargo for long-distance travel as well.

Tech Talk

In addition to the Urus’s luxury cabin is an all-new infotainment system that’s a massive leap forward from the tech found elsewhere in other Italian automakers. The appropriately-named Lamborghini Infotainment System III consists of a pair of touchscreen displays in the center console: The upper display manages media, navigation and other related tasks, while the lower display is used for things like climate control adjustment and providing haptic feedback to allow for easier adjustments on the go. Another tech to point out is its SAE-rated level two autonomy with standard driver assistance tech like adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, high-beam assist and parking sensors all around. Then there is the Urus’ “Tamburo” drive mode selector which is outfitted with seven driving modes;  Strada, Sport, Corsa, Sabbia, Terra, Neve and Ego. The first three focuses on the on-road capability of the Urus. Strada (street in Italian) serves as the default mode while Sport lowers the suspension and sharpens the gearbox. Corsa (Italian for Race) takes it a step further, dialing the transmission, suspension, exhaust system and other parameters to their most aggressive full-beans settings. Sabbia (sand), Terra (terrain) and Neve (snow) all center around the off-road capabilities of the Urus, raising the vehicle’s ride height and adjusting the transmission and traction control. As with the Aventador - Ego mode delivers a user-defined setting allowing the driver to select preferred settings from the various mode and combine them into one.

On the Move

With 650 horsepower generating from a twin-turbocharged V8 and a suspension system that’s more biased to perform on a race track as well as on dirt, you might think the Urus to be a handful for everyday driving. But in reality, it’s quite the opposite. The Urus is easy and practical when left on Strada mode, with soft dampers that effectively soak up the imperfections in the road. Toggle down to Sport mode and the Urus hunkers down noticeably, the ZF eight-speed transmission drops down a few cogs and the exhaust lets out a bit more growl. Tighter and more responsive without being abusive. Drop the mode to Corsa and the Urus gets harder, faster and stronger. Some might find the ride a bit too harsh but we sure enjoyed the crisp throttle response. For those drivers that want to dial in the best of both worlds, there’s EGO mode. Instead of utilizing predetermined setting, EGO allows the driver to mix and match settings for different vehicle components. Our favourite combo was set to Corsa for the drivetrain, Sport for the dampers and Sport for the steering. With great power you’ll also need great stopping force, luckily the Italians have you covered with that thank to the massive carbon ceramic brakes, with 10-piston front calipers and 17.3-inch front rotors and six-piston stoppers clamping on 14.6-inch rotors in the back. Together they provide an incredible amount of stopping power which makes you forget that you’re actually driving a 2.2-ton SUV.

Competition

The Urus’ main competition comes from its corporate siblings - the Porsche Cayenne Turbo and the Bentley Bentayga. While the Cayenne costs roughly half the price of the Lambo wild-child, the Urus has the edge in outright capability, and the Porsche is far more likely to be lost in a mall parking lot. When it comes to the Bentayga, which takes a more earnest approach at providing a luxury experience, it lacks the outright dynamics you can get from the Urus. With a similar price tag as the Urus in W12 trim, the Bentayga is set for the older chap who prefers luxury over speed.

Our Take

In a world packed with SUVs, the Urus not only marks a significant milestone in the story of Lamborghini but also in the SUV-crazed market. Though it’s not a type of vehicle we’ve grown accustomed to seeing from the Italian automaker, it is indeed a stunning performance machine that is worthy of the Bull badge. Lamborghini says it hopes the Urus will help them double its sales overall and to be honest, we see no reason to doubt that.

Lamborghini Urus Spec:

Engine: Twin Turbo V8

Power: 650hp

Torque: 627lb-ft

Transmission: 8-Speed Automatic

Drive type: All-Wheel Drive

Seating Capacity: 4-5

Starting Price: BD120,000

Categories: TEST DRIVE

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