||Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A
||Sant'Agata Bolognese, Italy
|Body and chassis
||Mid-engine, all wheel drive
||6.2 L V12 (572 HP)
6.5 L V12 (640 HP)
6.5 L V12 (650 HP)
6.5 L V12 (670 HP)
6-speed e-Gear semi-automatic
||2,665 mm (104.9 in)
||2002–06: 4,580 mm (180.3 in)
2007–10: 4,610 mm (181.5 in)
||2002–06: 2,045 mm (80.5 in)
2007–10: 2,057 mm (81.0 in)
||1,135 mm (44.7 in)
1,650 kg (3,638 lb)
1,665 kg (3,671 lb) LP 640
1,565 kg (3,450 lb) LP 670–4 SV
The Lamborghini Murcielago is a sports car produced by Italian automaker Lamborghini between 2001 and 2010. Successor to the Diablo andflagship of the automaker's lineup, the Murciélago was introduced as a coupé in 2001. The Murcielago was first available in North America for the 2002 model year. The automaker's first new design in eleven years, the car was also the brand's first new model under the ownership of German parent company Audi, which is owned by Volkswagen. It is styled by Peruvian-born Belgian Luc Donckerwolke, Lamborghini's head of design from 1998 to 2005.
A roadster version was introduced in 2004, followed by the updated LP 640 coupé and roadster and limited edition LP 650–4 Roadster. The final variation to wear the Murciélago nameplate was the LP 670–4 SuperVeloce, powered by the largest and final evolution of the Lamborghini V12engine. Production of the Murciélago ended on November 5, 2010, with a total run of 4,099 cars. Its successor, the Aventador, was released at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.
In a continuation of Lamborghini's tradition of naming its cars after stars from the world of bullfighting, the Murciélago is named for a fighting bullthat survived 24 sword strokes in an 1879 fight against Rafael "El Lagartijo" Molina Sánchez, at the Coso de los califas bullring in Córdoba, Spain. Murciélago fought with such passion and spirit that the matador chose to spare its life, a rare honor. The bull, which came from Joaquin del Val di Navarra's farm, was later presented as a gift to Don Antonio Miura, a noted local breeder; thus began the famed Miura line of fighting bulls, and the name for one of Lamborghini's greatest designs.
This promotional story, however, largely contradicts the history of Miura ranch, whose bulls first fought in corrida in 1849, 30 years prior to the "story of Murciélago". It is also doubtful that, after 24 deep stab wounds and the associated stress and blood loss, the animal could survive, let alone reproduce.
Murciélago is the Spanish name for the bat. The word is pronounced [murθiˈelaɣo], with a voiceless dental fricative [θ] (as in English thing), in the Castilian Spanish spoken in most of Spain. However, the Italian automaker often uses the Southern Spanish and Latin American Spanish pronunciation, [murˈsjelaɣo], with an [s] sound. Many people in Italy pronounce it [murtʃieˈlaɡo], as if it were an Italian word.
The 6.2-litre V12 from a first-generation Murciélago
The Murciélago is an all-wheel drive, mid-engined supersports car. With an angular design and an exceptionally low slung body, the highest point of the roof is just under 4 feet above the ground. One of the vehicle's most distinguishing features are its scissor doors. which lends to the extreme image. First-generation Murciélagos, produced between 2001 and 2006, were powered by a Lamborghini V12 that traces its roots back to the company's beginnings in the 1960s. The rear differential is integrated with the engine itself, with a viscous coupling center differential providing drive to the front wheels. Power is delivered through a 6-speed manual transmission. The Murciélago suspension uses an independent double-wishbone design, and bodywork features carbon fiber, steel and aluminum parts. The rear spoiler and the active air intakes integrated into the car's shoulders are electromechanically controlled, deploying automatically only at high speeds in an effort to maximize both aerodynamic and cooling efficiency.
The first generation cars were produced between 2001 and 2006, and known simply as Murciélago, sometimes Murciélago VT. Their V12 engines produced just under 580 PS (572 hp), and powered the car to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.8 seconds. Subsequent versions incorporated an alphanumeric designation to the name Murciélago, which indicated their engine configuration and output. However, the original cars are never referred to as "LP 580s". A first generation Murciélago Roadster was used in the 2005 movie Batman Begins.
The Murciélago Roadster was introduced in 2004. Primarily designed to be an open top car, it employed a manually attached soft roof as cover from adverse weather, but a warning on the windshield header advises the driver not to exceed 100 mph (160 km/h) with the top in place. The designer used the B-2 stealth bomber, the Wally 118 WallyPower yacht, and architect Santiago Calatrava's Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències in Valencia, Spain as his inspiration for the roadster's revised rear pillars and engine cover.
Murciélago LP 640
A Murciélago LP 640 coupé
In March 2006, Lamborghini unveiled a new version of its halo car at the Geneva Motor Show: the Murciélago LP 640. The new title incorporated the car's name, along with an alphanumeric designation which indicated the engine's orientation (Longitudinale Posteriore), along with the newly updated power output. With displacement now increased to 6.5 litres, the new car made 640 PS (471 kW; 631 hp) at 8000 rpm. The Murciélago's exterior received a minorfacelift. Front and rear fascias were revised, and side air intakes were now asymmetrical with the left side feeding an oil cooler. A new single outlet exhaust system incorporated into the rear diffuser, modified suspension tuning, revised programming and upgraded clutch for the 6-speed "e-Gear" automated sequential transmission with launch control rounded out the performance modifications. Interior seating was also re-shaped to provide greater headroom, and a new stereo system formed part of the updated dashboard. Optional equipment is included Carbon fibre-reinforced Silicon Carbide (C/SiC) ceramiccomposite brakes, chrome paddle shifters and a glass engine cover. The 2008 car's estimated fuel economy for the 6-speed manual is 8 miles per U.S. gallon (29 L/100 km; 9.6 mpg-imp) city and 13 miles per U.S. gallon (18 L/100 km; 16 mpg-imp) freeway, making it the least efficient car in 2008 for city and highway driving, according to the EPA. A second generation Murciélago LP 64 0 was used in the 2008 movie The Dark Knight.
A Murciélago LP 640 roadster
Murciélago LP 640 Roadster
At the 2006 Los Angeles Auto Show, Lamborghini announced that the roadster version of the Murciélago will also be updated to LP 640 status.
Murciélago LP 670–4 SuperVeloce (2009–2010)
The Lamborghini Murciélago LP 670–4 SuperVeloce
At the 2009 Geneva Motor Show, Lamborghini unveiled the ultimate version of the Murciélago, the LP 670–4 SuperVeloce. The SV moniker had previously appeared on the Diablo SV, and Miura. SV variants are more extreme and track-oriented, and are released at the end of each model's production run.
The SuperVeloce's V12 produces 670 PS (493 kW; 661 hp) at 8000 rpm and 660 N·m (490 lbf·ft) of torque at 6500 rpm, thanks to revised valve timing and upgraded intake system. The car's weight was also reduced by 100 kg (220 lb) through extensive use of carbon fiber inside and out. A new lighter exhaust system was also used. As a result of the extensive weight loss, the SV produces a power-to-weight ratio of 429 Bhp/long ton. Also standard were the LP 640's optional 15-inch carbon-ceramic disc brakes with 6 piston calipers. In its June 2009 issue, Car and Driver magazine estimated that the LP 670–4 SV is capable of accelerating to 100 km/h (62 mph) from a standing start in just 2.9 seconds and on to 200 km/h (120 mph) in 7.4 seconds. Subsequent testing byRoad and Track revealed a 0–60 time of 2.8 seconds and a quarter mile time of 10.9 seconds at 129.4 miles per hour. Lamborghini claims a top speed of 341 km/h (212 mph) when the car is fitted with an optional smaller spoiler, or 336 km/h (209 mph) with the standard Aeropack wing.
According to Maurizio Reggiani, head of Lamborghini R&D, the LP 670–4 SV's steering was tuned for high-speed sensitivity. The original production plan of the ultimate Murciélago was limited to 350 cars, and cost $400,000 US (before options) £270,038 in 2009. However, only 186 LP 670-4s were produced before the factory had to make room for the new Aventador production line. Numbered cars 1–350 do not represent the order in which cars were manufactured.