One of the hottest new offerings at the Paris Motor show 2014 is an electric surprise from a company known otherwise for building some of the world’s fastest most ruthless and amazing looking supercars – the Lamborghini Asterion.
Maybe it isn’t so much of a suprise, since almost every supercar manufacturer has tread the hybrid and electric car terrain – Ferrari, Mclaren, Rolls Royce, Porsche, they’ve all gone the fuel free way atleast once. The reason that the Asterion is such a great surprise is that Lamborghini have taken their time coming up with it, and the fruit is worth all of it.
On a first look, the electric bull looks like fresh and modern take on the Lamborghini Miura, which is of course said as a way of complimenting its looks. The two-seat mid engine, long narrow front lines and sharply cut rear ends, and all the other design and structure cues from the Miura can be seen reflected in the Asterion’s design.
Elegant and dignified
The Asterion is wide and very noticeably so. Its overall form is slightly rectangular and the surface play is slightly more fluid, more voluminous and curvy. Its lines are quite pure and modern and yet pleasantly minimalistic. It is not as sharp and agressive looking as either the Aventador or the Huracan, or for any classic Lambo for that matter and its curves make it look quite elegant and dignified. The cantilever doors add a certain charisma one would associate with a luxury sports car, and not the demolition machines that Lamborghini is known to build. The closer one looks at the Asterion, the more the fresh changes in the design ideology become visible.
The Interiors are equally beautiful and well designed as the exterior and nothing seems even a tad bit extra or out of place. The leather is of the finest quality and a pleasure to look at, along with the touch and feel. Forged carbon fibre which is fused together to form a molten marble swirled look, instead of the traditional woven cross hatch gives it a very posh feeling. There’s a lot of aluminum bits along with titanium trimmings and the dashboard looks neat and immaculate. The seats are slightly elevated and the major focus has been on making the interior as ergonomic and accomodating even for those who aren’t really used to the space age insides of these supercars.
The power is derived from a 10 cylinder 5.2 liter engine that produces over 610 horsepower and three plug in electric motors powered by lithium ion batteries. The monocoque body is made out of carbon fibre and the engine is mounted in the middle. There’s a 7 speed dual clutch transmission which sits at the rear axle. There are three drive modes that are programmed to aid both performance and efficiency depending on the user input.
The total combined output of the engine and motors comes upto 910 bhp, and the car goes from 0-100 kmph in under 3 seconds which is faster than the Huracan and just a tad behind the Aventador. Needless to say that the figures are every bit a supercar’s. Despite all this the car returns an unbelievable mileage of over ninety kilometers in a gallon. Yes, there is of course a catch here and not a very pleasant one at that. Under pure electric power the Asterion goes upto a mere 78 miles per hour, a number impossible to believe, especially when its coming from a Lamborghini. It can be plugged into a regular 110 volt power outlet and be fully charged in six hours.
As a relief, the car will still hit over 300 kmph when under pure fuel. On electric power, the Asterion can cover 31 kilometers on a full charge.
The car is named after the half-man, half-bull Minotaur from Greek mythology a symbol of living a dual life as he did both amongst animals and men. The car, with its dual nature of being gasoline powered and electric, completely justifies its name at the very least and deserves more than just mere recognition over its conceptualization. Sadly, the car is just a one off, and is not very likely at all, to see the production line.
That being said, the Asterion is an amazing car. It might not be the leap in technology that Lamborghini may or may not have been looking to cover with its introduction, but it looks brilliant and presents a fresh perspective on Lamborghini’s otherwise consistently stealth fighter inspired styling. If the car were to be launched, it would most certainly be amongst the most sought after Lambos and also take on the likes of the Koeniggseggs and the Bentley’s at the least.