We all have to thank the European Union for it's upcoming emission regulations, because that's the only reason Lamborghini built the stunning Asterion hybrid.
Journalists keep asking Lamborghini about turbos at press events, especially since Ferrari went back to boosted power, and CEO Stefan Winkelmann is always there to tell them firmly that not only are they keeping their naturally aspirated engines, but also the tradition of one Lamborghini equaling one engine. There's the ten-cylinder one, the twelve-cylinder one, and finito.
Now, the last time I checked, the Asterion had four engines. The 610 hp V10 from the Huracan, an integrated starter generator and two electric motors. That's probably why I got the impression today that it actually pains Winkelmann to say "plug-in hybrid solutions," And he had to do that twice.
No matter, he will get over it just like those hardcore Lamborghini fans who see the Asterion as another sign of their beloved brand going all wrong thanks to Audi's parenting.
The truth is that the Huracan is dialed back compared to the Gallardo just to make sure their buyers won't crash them all the time, and while the Aventador remains on the batshit crazy side, there are people out there who want an immensely powerful but comfortable grand tourer from Sant'Agata Bolognese. Just like the ones Lamborghini built before the Miura ruined everything.
Yes, the Asterion is a hybrid because the EU will introduce new laws in 2021 and they simply can't ignore that. If it makes it into production (and I would bet on it), those 31 all electric miles and the reduced emissions will allow them to build the next generation of blood boiling supercars, while in the meantime the Asterion's raised roof, luxurious interior and 3 second acceleration to sixty will attract a whole new type of customer to the brand. People who like to go for a nice long drive without catching fire.
People like Ferruccio Lamborghini.
Photo credit: Máté Petrány/Jalopnik