What Changed for 2008:OverviewLamborghini
, an Italian automaker of high-performance sports cars, was founded in 1962 by businessman Ferruccio Lamborghini. While Lamborghini originally opened its doors as a tractor factory, a visit to the Ferrari
factory by Ferruccio (where he went to complain about a problem with his Ferrari 250) changed everything and the factory soon began designing its own automobiles. Their first car, the 350GTV, rolled out in 1963. In 1965, Lamborghini introduced the Miura, a true purpose-built sports car.
Under the current ownership of Audi
AG (a subsidiary of Volkswagen
Group), the first Gallardo arrived on the scene in 2003. Less expensive than its sibling the Murcilago
, the all-wheel-drive (AWD) Gallardo, with its powerful 10-cylinder engine mid-mounted in the chassis, has become the best-selling Lamborghini of all time, the company says. More than 7100 have been built since inception. Not intent on leaving a great design alone, Lamborghini launched the convertible Spyder in 2006, and the lightweight Superleggera in 2007. The 2008 model year revealed the LP560-4, an updated Gallardo with a new and more powerful engine and a refreshed exterior. Every Lamborghini Gallardo is covered by a 3-year/unlimited mileage basic factory warranty at the time of sale.Model Lineup
There are three different Lamborghini Gallardo models for 2008: Gallardo LP560-4, Gallardo Spyder, and the Gallardo Superleggera. New for 2008, the Gallardo LP560-4 is a 2-seat coupe with a fixed roof. Its 552-hp, mid-mounted 10-cylinder engine makes it the most powerful Gallardo in the lineup. The Gallardo Spyder, with a 10-cylinder engine rated at 520 hp, offers a fully retractable soft convertible top for open-air motoring. The Gallardo Superleggera is a lightweight model (about 150 pounds lighter) for even higher performance. With a modified exhaust, its 10-cylinder engine is rated at 530 hp.
Although the Lamborghini Gallardo is an exotic automobile in the truest sense, the traditional Italian craftsmanship is apparent in all models. Each Gallardo offers twin electric sport seats covered in fine leather or optional Alcantera. A 2-zone air conditioning system with sun regulation, power accessories, and the Lamborghini multimedia system with a USB connection are standard. The power-operated top on the Lamborghini Spyder (it opens and closes in just 20 seconds) is available in black, blue, gray and beige. A powered rear window on the Spyder doubles as a wind blocker when the top is down. Options on the different Gallardo models include Bluetooth hands-free communication, anti-theft alarm systems, and a rearview camera. The LP560-4 may even be ordered with a suspension system that will lift the front of the vehicle at the touch of a button to help it clear obstacles. For those customers who demand more, Lamborghini offers the "Individualisation Program Ad Personam" with an almost inexhaustible list of custom options (their motto is, "Think the Impossible").Powertrain
Lamborghini offers three different engines under the rear decklid of the 2008 Gallardo models. The Gallardo LP560-4 features the most advanced powerplant of the three. Displacing 5.2 liters, the direct-injection V-10 engine is rated at 552 hp and 398 lb.-ft. of torque. Power from the engine is routed to all four wheels through a 30:70 (front to rear) torque split. The transmission is Lamborghini's 6-speed automatic "e-gear" sequential transmission with paddle shifters on the steering wheel. The LP560-4 is able to accelerate to 62 mph in just 3.7 seconds, and its top speed is just over 200 mph, according to Lamborghini. The Gallardo Spyder is equipped with a 5.0-liter V-10 engine rated at 520 hp and 376 lb.-ft. of torque. With a 6-speed manual transmission, or Lamborghini's optional "e-gear" 6-speed automatic sequential transmission, the AWD Spyder sprints to 62 mph in 4.3 seconds. With the top up, the convertible Lamborghini can reach 195 mph (190 mph with the top down). The lightweight Gallardo Superleggera shares the same engine as the Spyder, but an open exhaust allows the 5.0-liter V-10 engine to make 530 hp and hit 62 mph in 3.8 seconds. With the standard "e-gear" 6-speed sequential automatic transmission, the top speed of the AWD Superleggera is 196 mph. The EPA has rated the Gallardo Spyder at 10 mpg city/17 mpg highway with a manual transmission. The sequential automatic transmission is rated at 11 mpg city/17 mpg highway. The LP560-4 and Superleggera have not been rated as of this writing.
All 2008 Lamborghini Gallardo models feature a lightweight independent race-bred suspension and massive disc brakes. The front discs have 8-piston Brembo calipers, while the rear calipers are a 4-piston design. Ceramic brake rotors, to reduce weight and improve performance further, are optional on some models.Safety
All 2008 Lamborghini Gallardo models are built upon a lightweight space frame utilizing aluminum and other composite materials for strength and rigidity. Both driver and passenger are protected by frontal air bags and side air bags with head protection. Anti-lock brakes (ABS), traction control, and an electronic stabilization program (ESP) are also standard on all models. The A-pillar of all Gallardo models has been specifically designed and reinforced for protection in the event of a rollover. In addition, twin automatically extending roll bars are located behind the rear window of the Spyder model. During an accident, the air bag system will automatically deploy the safety system for additional occupant protection. None of the three Lamborghini Gallardo models have been crash tested by either the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA
) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS
All Gallardo models for 2008 are available with Lamborghini's "e-gear." The 6-speed sequential automatic transmission is electronically controlled to allow the driver to select between four different driving and gear-changing programs: normal, sport, automatic and snow. (The LP560-4 model offers a fifth program for even more rapid gear changes.) The transmission is designed to shift faster-and more efficiently-than even the most experienced driver working a traditional manual transmission. While "sport" mode allows the engine to reach redline and yields amazingly rapid shift changes, the "automatic" mode is designed for urban areas when maximum shifting comfort is preferred.