The EVO is the supercar the Huracán should have always been, writes Gareth Herincx
Lamborghini hasn’t looked back since it became part of the giant Volkswagen Group in 1998.
With a stunning, state-of-the-art range of super sports cars and a new performance SUV in the shape of the Urus, it’s an iconic brand occupying a special place in the luxury sector.
The name may be exotic, and it has a heritage matched by only a few, but the line-up is now a mixture of the surprisingly accessible and the more hardcore, track-focused.
The flagship, limited edition Aventador SVJ fits into the latter category, while the Urus and the new Huracán EVO manage to be both superbly dynamic and blistering fast, yet also useable even as daily drivers.
Available as a coupe of convertible (spyder), the Huracan EVO’s shape is now a relatively familiar sight.
Unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in 2014, Lamborghini’s Gallardo replacement wowed the crowds. It became a best-seller too, but the critics weren’t entirely convinced, so for 2019 Lamborghini has launched the Huracán EVO.
As the name suggests, it’s an evolution of the previous model, but in reality it’s much more than an update.
Back at base in Sant’Agata Bolognese – close to Bologna and Modena in the appropriately named “Terra dei Motori” (Motor Valley) – Lamborghini’s engineers spared no expense when they were creating the EVO.
Inheriting the mighty 5.2-litre V10 from the hardcore Huracán Performante track special, which develops 631bhp at 8,000rpm, and 442lb ft of torque at 6500rpm, it can accelerate to 62mph in just 2.9 seconds and tops out at 202mph. Paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, it’s one of the last great naturally-aspirated engines.
More importantly, the EVO now features clever tech including rear-wheel steering, four-wheel torque vectoring, improved suspension and a new all-wheel-drive system.
An on-board computer (Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Integrata or LDVI) helps all the technology work in perfect harmony, creating a sophisticated car which has the ability to flatter the driver more often than not.
The exterior differences are hard to spot at first sight. For instance, there’s a new front splitter with an integrated wing, while the enlarged air intakes feature the Y-shape – a Lamborghini design DNA essential.
The floor of the car has been redesigned too, improving downforce and aerodynamic efficiency by more than five times compared to the original Huracán.
At the rear, the spoiler is now a slotted double-decker ducktail, while the epic twin exhausts are mounted higher.
Elsewhere, the evergreen Huracán styling continues to pay homage to iconic Raging Bulls of the past. The bonnet lines are inspired by the Countach, the skirt air ducts are reminiscent of the Murciélago and the raised tailpipes are pure Lamborghini.
Inside, the basic digital dashboard is much the same, but the central stack now boasts a new 8.4-inch portrait-style infotainment display, controlling most of the EVO’s major functions. Thankfully, there are also plenty of quality toggle switches to keep traditionalists like me happy.
The cockpit is comfortable and an exciting place to be, boasting acres of Alcantara leather and carbon fibre, though the seats would benefit from larger side bolsters for extra support.
Being mid-engined, the rear of the car is a largely transparent showcase for the V10. However, there is a small amount of storage space behind the two seats, plus a modest area under the bonnet, so you’ll have to travel light if you’re planning a weekend away.
The Huracan EVO doesn’t disappoint from the moment you press the start button (hidden behind a red fighter jet-style flip-up missile lock cover) just below the central digital display.
The engine explodes into life, then it’s just a case of flicking the gear-change paddle behind the steering wheel to select first and you’re away.
Sitting low in the cabin, it’s everything you’d expect from a supercar, plus a few quirks. For instance, the indicators and wipers are both controlled via switches on the multi-function steering wheel.
From a daily driver point of view, visibility can be challenging. Pulling out of junctions requires extra care, while parking is tricky. The rear-view camera is handy, but you’ll probably still find yourself parking a foot away from the kerb more often than not.
There are three driving modes – Strada, Sport and Corsa – selected via a toggle switch at the base of the steering wheel.
Strada is the most refined, road-biased setting, but if you want some fun then select Sport. Not only does the EVO get a little tail-happy if pushed, but that V10 emits an astonishing howl and there’s no shortage of pops and crackles on down-changes.
Go for Corsa (track mode) and the engine note is even more brutal, the gearbox switches to manual only, the suspension stiffens up and it’s ‘playful’.
So, it’s probably safer to stick to Sport on the road where you can build up your confidence levels quicker than you might think. The EVO handles superbly, with exceptional grip when cornering and huge amounts of traction, while the steering is precise, quick and nicely weighted.
Overall, it’s sensationally fast, yet feels composed and totally planted – a thrilling driving experience.
I drove the Huracán EVO in Sardinia and there’s no doubt that it’s a piece of automotive theatre – a real crowd-pleaser. I lost count of the number of cars that flashed and honked at me, plus the waving locals.
Just like its most obvious rivals, the McLaren 720S and Ferrari 488 GTB, you can only experience a fraction of the performance available on the open road, so investing in the odd track day would give you a whole new perspective.
The Lamborghini Huracán EVO is a rare beast – a gorgeous Italian thoroughbred that’s surprisingly easy to drive and hugely entertaining, yet with an edge, should you wish to discover it. With a soundtrack to die for, it’s a car that makes you feel special. Not just because of the way it looks or the smile it puts on your face (and others), but because it’s a direct descendant of some of the most iconic cars in history.