The unmistakable bellow of a 12-cylinder engine has long been the auditory signature of Italian sports cars, especially those wearing the Raging Bull badge. “When I miss the sound and the fury, I take refuge in my garage and turn the key in the ignition of my Miura,” Ferruccio Lamborghini once said of his V-12-powered supercar from the late 1960s. His namesake brand has continued the legacy of the V-12 power plant even as other marques transition to smaller, turbocharged engines and hybrid power—but, even at Lamborghini, it seems the days of the symphonic V-12 are now numbered. This morning, Automobili Lamborghini announced the last of its flagship models to rely purely on a naturally aspirated V-12: the Lamborghini Aventador LP 780-4 Ultimae.
“The Aventador LP 780-4 denotes the final, purest, timeless naturally aspirated production V-12 Lamborghini,” said Stephan Winkelmann, Automobili Lamborghini’s president and CEO, in the official statement, calling it “the definitive Aventador concluding an extraordinary era.”
Revealed in 2011, the Aventador replaced the Murciélago as the banner model from Sant’Agata Bolognese. Later variants included the 740 hp Aventador S, introduced in 2016, and the 770 hp Aventador SVJ that arrived two years later. The latter, whose appellation refers to Superveloce Jota and pays homage to Lamborghini’s development efforts for motorsport in the early 1970s, set the production-car lap record on Germany’s Nürburgring circuit at the time. The new Aventador, presented in both coupe and roadster variations, is touted to be a combination of its most recent predecessors, pairing the raw power of the SVJ with the handling and styling of the S version.
The LP 780-4 nomenclature is derived from the car’s engine placement, “Longitudinale Posteriore” (positioned longitudinally), plus the output of 780 cv (nearly 770 hp) as well as its permanent four-wheel-drive setup. With 531 ft lbs of torque, the 6.5-liter heart is managed by the automaker’s Independent Shifting Rod (ISR) seven-speed transmission. The power-train configuration, complemented by the supercar’s carbon-fiber monocoque construction (as well as heavy use of carbon fiber throughout the body) allows the 3,417-pound (dry weight) coupe to top out at 220.5 mph after charging from zero to 62 mph in 2.8 seconds. The vehicle’s carbon-ceramic brakes bring it to a stop from 62 mph in less than 98.5 feet.
When it comes to the Aventador Ultimae’s athleticism, especially when cornering, the front axle’s Lamborghini Dynamic Steering system automatically adjusts the steering ratio as needed, working in concert with the back axle’s active rear-wheel steering, all of which translates to nimbler handling at slower speeds and greater stability when stamping the throttle. As with past iterations of the model, all of the drive-assist electronics are controlled by the Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Attiva (LDVA) system, which factors in real-time data from its numerous sensors to constantly optimize settings.
As far as aerodynamic improvements, the front bumper and splitter increase downforce and improve airflow for cooling, respectively. The active-aero rear wing assumes three different positions, based on the traction, suspension and steering selections, which are determined with the usual Strada, Sport, Corsa and customizable Ego drive modes.
For now, few specific have been given regarding interior enhancements, but the Ultimae does have the Aventador’s digital dashboard display, an infotainment system which can be voice-activated and the option of track telemetry functionality.
A total of just 600 vehicles—350 coupes and 250 roadsters, priced at $498,258 and $546,847, respectively—will comprise the 2022 Lamborghini Aventador LP 780-4 Ultimae’s production, which is set to begin in Q4 of this year. And with 18 standard paint options and another 300 color choices available through the bespoke Ad Personam division, owners can further fine tune their personal swan song to Ferruccio’s beloved “sound and fury.”