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BEIJING 2012: Lamborghini reveals Urus SUV concept

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Finally, rumours, soothsaying and hypotheses can lay to rest. Lamborghini's third line of cars will be an SUV and not a four-door supersport car. The Urus SUV concept is Lamborghini's return to the SUV formula. If it gets the go-ahead for production, this could double the volumes for what is essentially a small automotive firm, with Lamborghini targetting sales of 3,000-3,500 units of the vehicle annually. China, Russia, West Asia and India - this is the Lamborghini you've always desired!

Stephan Winkelmann, Lamborghini's suave president & CEO says 'It is the perfect complement to our supersport cars. Thus was born the Urus concept and Lamborghini's second attempt at an SUV since the famous LM002. The Urus name is derived from Aurochs, the ancestor of most Spanish fighting bulls.

BS Motoring was privileged enough to get some, if not all of the inside dope on the Urus, sometime late-March and even had a one-on-one interaction with Stephan, as he went ahead and explained the philosophy of the Urus and what future holds for Lamborghini. A more detailed preview can be found in the May 2012 issue of BS Motoring, out on stands now.

The Urus is an edgy styled work of goodness. From the Y-shaped LED headlights to the large air-dam, the pinch lines on the bonnet, the large wheels and the rising waistline that's complemented by a bulging rear wheel arch, the Urus is one aggressive design that will capture the imagination of the intended customers.

Designed to be a proper four-door, four-seat SUV, the Urus will be built using a cocktail of materials. Carbon fibre, a material whose expertise Lamborghini is quite famous for, will not only be used for the skin, but for the interior bits as well, making it one of the lightest SUVs in its category.  It's carried through the entire interior of the concept, including the central tunnel and even partially on the leather clad seats. The four bucket seats too are made of the same material.

Taking a leaf from the Ferrari book is the multi-function steering that also houses the controls for the indicators and wipers (yikes!), while the paddle shifters will continue to stay behind the steering (phew!). Touch screens for the front and rear passengers are part of the concept's interior package, while the conventional outside rear view mirrors are replaced with TFT screens.  

Add the low centre of gravity, some clever aero bits up front and rear and what you have is a focused sporty SUV that is aimed at the jugular that reads 'Porsche Cayenne', 'Maserati Kubang' and the 'Bentley SUV', while going a notch higher in the process.

The Urus will be powered by, what seems to be, a new generation V10 or V12 that could potentially produce over 600 bhp. Winkelmann says that the Urus, like the Gallardo and Aventador, will follow a one-model, one-engine format. And he is quick not to dismiss the possibility of hybrids, although diesel is a no-go. And for the first time, a dual-clutch transmission will be used on a Lamborghini, that should help bring down the CO2 figure by quite some margin.

While pricing will be key to the production version's success, especially since it will be targeted at markets like West Asia, China, UK, US and Europe (with a small portion heading here), Lamborghini will utilise the Volkswagen Group's purchasing power to keep the price keen. We expect the car to go into production in the next three to four years, sometime after the Bentley SUV.