Lamborghini Unveils Plug-In Hybrid Concept
The Asterion may point to a greener future for the legendary Italian supercar marque
Lamborghini will become the latest purveyor of mighty gas-fueled supercars to go electric if the Asterion plug-in hybrid concept revealed at the Paris Auto Show goes into production.
The Asterion is following the supercar trend of supplementing a gasoline engine with battery-powered motors — notable examples include the Ferrari LaFerrari, Porsche 918 Spyder and BMW i8 — and is part of a broader trend among luxury automakers to offer plug-in hybrid versions of their flagship cars, such as the recently unveiled Mercedes S 500.
The Asterion's 602 hp 5.2 liter V-10 gasoline engine is joined by two electric motors that power the front wheels. In pure electric mode, the car has a range of about 30 miles and a top speed of 78 mph — typical for the class. When the gasoline engine kicks in, the Asterion leaps from zero to 62 mph in three seconds, and top speed increases to 199 mph.
The Asterion hints at a future in which Lamborghini, famous for conjuring cars as powerful and unsparing to drive as the fighting bulls they are named after, will court drivers outside the demographic of motorsports freaks able to drop 200 large on a car more at home on a track than a freeway. The Asterion has a somewhat conservative — by Lamborghini standards — curvaceous body and a cabin that the company says will allow "comfortable everyday cruising rather than extreme performance and handling."
Watch for THR's upcoming video and review of the 2015 Lamborghini Hurracan.