The Lamborghini Urus SUV Race Car ushers in a new Motorsport program
The Urus racer is 25 percent lighter than its production counterpart.
You know Lamborghini is making an SUV now, right? It’s called the Urus and, besides it being a questionable move in every way but financial (they’ll sell them by the boatload, just watch), Lambo has come up with an idea that’s even goofier than making their own truck.
At first, I thought this was some sort of monumentally sick joke. Then I slipped into a deep existential dread that a sports car company (even though it’s a sports car company as fundamentally compromised as Lamborghini) would even contemplate a truck racing series. But now, the more I think about it, the more this could turn into a real hootin’ hollerin’ good time!
Think of it: if they play it right, and only allow entries to be driven by housewives from Orange Country and plastic surgeons from Scarsdale, the on track action (and by action, I mean non-stop mistakes, over-driving, and completely preventable shunts) could be hysterically entertaining.
That tried and true combination of high power, high center of gravity, and high self-regard could equal squealing tires, concussive thumps, and mangled carbon fiber from the green flag till the checker.
At the 2018 World Finals, for their single make racing series, Lamborghini Squadra Corse unwrapped the Urus ST-X Concept. Their, uh, vision is a ride imagined for a single-brand racing championship that combines both a race circuit and an off-road track. Lambo made no mention if this “vision” was the result of Hunter S. Thompson levels of peyote ingestion combined with a frightening lack of sleep, but it sure sounds like it.
The new racing series will debut in 2020 both in Europe and the Middle East (lots o’cash floating around there). The competitors will race on specially-prepared and FIA-approved circuits, with the whole rich guy “arrive and drive” formula in place. Just hop in your Gulfstream Jet (you bourgeoisie jerk) fly to, oh, probably Dubai or some such place, and Lambo will have the complete package, including the car and technical support, all ready and waiting for the entire race weekend.
Engineering & Performance
The Urus ST-X Concept has, of course, been thoroughly worked over. As fun as it would be to watch them do this with a showroom stock machine, Lambo isn’t that senseless. The Urus ST-X Concept comes with all the FIA-approved safety elements you would expect. There’s a steel roll cage, fire suppression system, and an FT3 fuel tank not found in the production model.
Visually, this thing is all Lamborghini and about as subtle as a shotgun blast. The Urus ST-X Concept is laid out in a matte Verde Mantis (i.e. screaming green) livery and the hood is in naked carbon fiber. The air intakes are larger and optimized for cooling the V8 twin-turbo plant. Said mill puts out 640 ponies and 627 lb-ft. of grunt.
Rear wing? Sure, why not? New hexagonal racing exhausts, and 21-inch single-nut aluminum alloy wheels, fitted with Pirelli tires, complete the visuals.
Compared to the production model, the Urus ST-X Concept drops 25 percent of its all-up weight. Combined with an increase in torsional stiffening via the roll cage and a “raised set-up,” the Urus ST-X Concept is ready for the track. Or so says Lamborghini.
Chances are the entire thing will be a circus sideshow, rather than some sort of racing to improve the breed situation. So why not go full circus? Grab a Kardashian or two (there seems to be a lot of them) a few rap moguls, burned-out stadium rockers (what’s Sammy Hagar up to these days?), bone saw wielding Sheiks, and a few hedge fund managers and turn ’em loose!
Let’s go full-on Ben-Hur!
Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz.