New Lamborghini Sian: First hybrid Lambo revealed at Frankfurt motor show

Published: 10 September 2019

► New Lambo Sian hypercar
► Uses hybrid power
► 808bhp, 2.8sec 0-62mph sprint

Sant'Agata has gone hybrid for the first time ever in a production car. The new Lamborghini Sian is the raging bull's latest creation, revealed in style at the 2019 Frankfurt motor show.

This is Lamborghini's first foray into the world of hybrid tech on a production car, and it marks the beginning of a new electrified era. Purists, however, needn't despair - there's still a screeching V12 engine hidden underneath the Sian's angular bodywork.

Sian? That’s a weird name…

Yes it is, but as with all Lamborghini model names there's a deeper meaning behind it. Sian means ‘flash of lightning’ in the Bolognese dialect. A rather apt name, then, for what is Lamborghini’s first real hybrid performance car.

'It augments the potential for Lamborghini as a super sports car brand for tomorrow and for decades to come, even as hybridisation becomes more desirable and inevitably essential,' said Lambo boss, Stefano Domenicali. Maurizio Reggiani, Lamborghini's chief technical officer, added: ‘Lamborghini is, inherently, a rule breaker. With the Sian, we set ourselves the challenge of creating the best hybrid solution for a Lamborghini to provide the first step in our electrification strategy.’

Tell me about those looks…

Lambo’s design team has kept the ‘Gandini line’ that’s given every one of its cars the wedge-like shape we all know and love, and smushed together elements from the 2017 Terzo Millennio concept and the Countach.

The Y-shaped headlights and carbonfibre splitter are heavily inspired by the EV concept of two years ago, while, at the back, an active wing lifts to merge flush with a pair of vertical winglets with ‘63’ emblazoned on them.

2019 Lamborghini Sian, rear three quarter, Frankfurt motor show

A transparent ‘Peroscopio’ glass panel runs from the centre of the roof and rolls back into the slatted engine cover adds light and bonus visibility for those inside, and Lambo says the six hexagonal headlights are a nod to the 80’s icon.

There are active aero elements, too. Along with the wing, Lambo uses active cooling vanes at the rear, activated by a smart material that reacts to heat. When a certain temperature is reached, the vanes rotate for extra airflow.

What about inside?

It does look rather Aventador-ish in here, but the centre console has been tidied up and a portrait touchscreen first seen in the Huracan EVO is one of the key differences. The leather upholstery comes from Poltrona Frau, an Italian furniture company that was founded in 1912 in Turin, and Lamborghini says 3D-printed parts have been used for the first time.

Lambo Sian interior

How do you hybridise a Lambo V12?

With supercapacitors. It’s a rather novel energy storage solution that’s instead of a traditional lithium-ion battery pack, and Lambo claims using this particular method is three times lighter and three times as powerful as regular Li-Ion cells. The storage system can be charged and discharged with the same amount of power, too, so that electric boost is recuperated instantly whenever the car brakes.

What is a supercapacitor? CAR explains

In fairness, it’s about as light a hybrid as it gets, using a 48v 34bhp e-motor mounted centrally in the car, which has been merged with the gearbox for a more immediate response. Still, it means the Sian can be reversed and parked on e-power alone. Along with providing extra shove, the e-motor fills in the split-second power gaps made by gearchanges.

That electric power is coupled with Lamborghini’s highest-output 6.5-litre yet which, on its own, makes 774bhp (15bhp more than in the Aventador SVJ) at a screaming 8500rpm.

Lambo Sian front tracking

Total power output is 808bhp, making it the most powerful Lambo ever made. The 0-62mph launch sprint is over with in under 2.8 seconds and the Sian can hit 218mph. In-gear acceleration has particularly taken a jump – Lamborghini says the ‘traction force’ is improved by 10% between 19 and 37mph, and 20% between 44 and 75mph – making it 1.2 seconds quicker than an Aventador SVJ.

I want one!

Tough. Just 63 are being made – a nod to Lamborghini’s originating year – and they’re all sold. Each Sian customer is taken through the ‘Ad Personam’ personalisation process to make each one special – the one pictured is in the ‘Oro Elettrico’ theme, blending an olive green paint with golden flakes for a brighter sheen and gold details.

Given an Aventador SVJ will set you back around £350,000 – we expect the Sian will easily cost at least £400k.

Check out our Lamborghini reviews

By Jake Groves

CAR's staff writer, office Geordie, gamer, lover of hot hatches

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