Lamborghini Urus SUV racks up higher brand visibility

By RIZAL JOHAN | 20 September 2018

Ortenzi on the Urus mystic: 'When you drive the Urus, you feel it’s a Lamborghini first before you feel it is an SUV'.

The introduction of the Lamborghini SUV from the storied Italian sports car maker marks a new offering unlike any other at the moment.

IN the newly refurbished showroom of Lamborghini Kuala Lumpur in Glenmarie, Shah Alam, we caught up with Automobili Lamborghini Asia Pacific chief executive officer Matteo Ortenzi, who was there to open the centre and spoke about what Lamborghini calls its Super Sport Utility Vehicle, the Urus.

Why is this called a super SUV, you ask?

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This is because the Urus boasts a 4.0-litre V8 twin-turbo engine, which spews out 650hp and 850Nm of torque and achieves a jaw-dropping top speed of 305kph. It also does 0-100kph in 3.6 seconds.

The Urus was launched in Malaysia earlier this year in March and had already received up to 30 pre-orders for this SUV priced just under RM1mil before duties.

We asked Ortenzi about the response of the Urus in Malaysia.

“It’s very, very positive. We have a good order collection. We were expecting the car to be successful. In Malaysia, as in other markets, it’s going beyond our expectation,” he said.

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There is no doubt that the premium SUV market is crowded as many other marques have their own offerings in this segment as well. Ortenzi points out, however, that the Urus is in a unique position.

“For us, what we intend to do and what we did was to create a new segment. If you look at the price positioning and the product offer with the content we are able to provide, it’s something new.

“The strange point of the Urus is that when you drive it, you feel that it’s a Lamborghini before you feel it is an SUV. And that is because of the performance, the emotion, the sound of the engine ... this is something that is not expected from an SUV and this is what differentiates us from the rest.”

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Other than the 4.0-litre V8, will there be different engine options to come for the Urus?

“At the moment, we see the V8 as the right engine for the short to mid-term period because it has the perfect combination of torque and power we can put in this body type.

“So when we see other kinds of technology, such as hybridisation, why not? If in the future it is able to provide the right level of performance, the right level of emotion in the car then the thing to do is work towards hybrid technology.”

Now that Lamborghini has already offered a mid-sized SUV, are there plans to release a compact-sized SUV?

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“Lamborghini took an enormous step with the Urus so we were preparing the company and we are doubling the sales compared to when we just offered the sports cars.

“And we know we need a bit of time to assess. We can go towards a compact size or other solutions but we have not yet decided. The market this year is changing so fast. I think this is the most interesting period in the automotive industry in recent years because of the electrification trend, the digitalisation.

“it could be a bit arrogant to say now that you are sure what can happen in the next five to six years.”

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