Want to make friends easily? Then all you have to do is purchase a Lamborghini STO. Everywhere you go, people will notice and immediately come up to you to ask about the amazing supercar. The Lamborghini Huracán STO is so striking, so exciting, and so outrageous that it acts as a people magnet. During our test, no matter where we stopped, people would come over and look at the car and strike up a conversation.
The STO is a rear-drive Huracán that’s 43kg lighter than its brother, the Huracán Performante. Lamborghini engineers have also added a 53 per cent increase in down force over the Performante, to around 450kg at 175mph, which helps keep this supercar from literally flying off the road. Perhaps the only feature we’re not fond of on this car is the odd looking “shark’s fin” that directs the air straight over the rear spoiler. Lamborghini says the fin provides ‘yaw stability’ during high-speed, but we have our doubts as it looks like a real afterthought in design.
To keep weight low, the car has magnesium wheels that are nearly 33 per cent lighter than aluminum. What’s more, an astonishing 75 per cent of the car is made from carbon fiber panels. Lamborghini reduced even more weight on the car by changing to a thinner windscreen, a one-piece hood, wings, and bumper.
Another feature on this car is that the under floor on the STO is also flat to reduce drag. Everything about the STO shouts aerodynamics. The body shape was designed to reduce drag and even tested in wind tunnels.
(Related: Raging success for Lamborghini)
As for the Huracán’s engine, it has pretty much remained unchanged and derives its power from a naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V10 that puts out 631 horses with 416lb ft (564Nm) of torque. It is a beautiful thing to behold and hear. The exhausts also give off a loud, throaty rumble. In fact, the holler from just starting the car has the ability to scare the bejesus out of most people.
To keep this beast of an engine breathing, there are NACA ducts all over the car. NACA scoops (or ducts) is a common form of low-drag air inlet design, originally developed by the U.S. National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), the precursor to NASA. One main roof scoop shoves cooling air into the engine bay rather than acting as ram-air for the induction system. All these scoops add to the racecar look that is a STO.
Inside the car is petty much what you’d expect in a race inspired supercar: Not necessarily dripping in luxury like a Ferrari, but there are enough buttons, bells, and whistles to give the car a modern and stylish feel. The seats are snug and comfortable, and all controls are within easy reach. The turn signal indicator is a slide switch on the steering wheel itself and seems better than the traditional stick type jutting out of the steering column. Sadly, there is one piece of equipment, which is pretty much useless, and that’s the sound system. With the loud engine, you’d need to crank up the volume to deafening levels, which kind of defeats its purpose unless you’re already hard of hearing. Getting in and out of the car is not for the flexibility challenged and if you’re a big person, prepare to do some awkward contortions that may not show you in the best of light.
The tiny rear window on the car is also useless, and when reversing, you have to be extremely careful. You wouldn’t want to crack this precious S$1.4 million carbon fiber egg on anything. Thankfully, when the shift is put in reverse, the driver’s display panel changes from instrumentation to a rear-view camera screen that helps tremendously with reversing.
Don’t expect a cushy or mushy ride on the road. The STO is a racer pretending to be a streetcar or a streetcar pretending to be a racer. Still, most people will use it as a street vehicle and occasional driver. The Bridgestone Potenzas rear tires are huge, and the suspension has stiffer bushes with toughened anti roll bars to keep the rear-wheel steer system in check. Lamborghini has also added its revised MagneRide adjustable dampers, which keep the ride stiff and precise. As a result, you can feel every pothole and bump on the road.
Another innovative super feature on this car is a switch that raises the front end some 40mm to prevent front-end damage, safely negotiating speed bumps, parking garages, and driveways. You can leave it on while driving, but once you reach a speed above 70kph, it automatically lowers the front end.
On the road, the STO zooms to 100kph in three short seconds and 200kph in nine. Most drivers will appreciate the braking performance from the Brembo carbon-ceramics, although they can feel a bit tricky at normal speeds. It’s kind of strange, but the more you thrash this beast, the better it drives. However, always remember to keep the reigns tight on this team of horses or they’re liable to get away from you.
The STO is a decent daily driver that will, as we suggest, make heads turn. Still, those individuals interested in the Lamborghini Huracán STO aren’t likely to be short on cash. And there’s the fact that the Lamborghini is just an outrageously beautiful, if not over-the-top supercar. The one we tested was painted in bright neon green (Lamborghini calls this color Verde Scandal) with orange accents. In many ways, it looked like the Incredible Hulk – on steroids.
It’s a sad fact that cars like this are becoming part of a twilight industry. The heat, oil, and combustion of petrol engine power will certainly be supplanted by faster electric motors that make no noise. Driving a piston engine car way past 8,000rpm is, in a word, thrilling. If you’ve got the cash, want a lot of new friends, and no end of excitement, then this car won’t disappoint.