The Lamborghini Aventador certainly does not match the definition of a green car. It looks outrageous and it has a thundering 700-hp 12-cylinder engine that allows it to go over 200 mph. Definitely not green. But few Lamborghini owners drive regularly at those speeds. Even in Germany. In Monte Carlo or Forte dei Marmi, Lamborghinis are driven at legal speeds, idling in traffic like all the other cars. With Eurocrat zealots in Brussels pushing to reduce fuel consumption in all cars, that lead the manufacturer to the idea that, without compromising the car’s performance on an unrestricted stretch of road, there should be a way to make Lamborghini cars more efficient in daily city usage.
The engineers installed 2 new features never seen on a Lamborghini before. The first one is a Stop & Start feature, a little device that is getting really common in Europe. Then there is a cylinder deactivation system. The V12 will reduce itself to a V6 on light loads. That is below 135 kph (84 mph) in a Lamborghini. In western Europe, it means that there will be only 3 countries, Bulgaria, Poland and Germany, where Lamborghini drivers will have all their cylinders in operation when on the highway. In every other country, the speed limit is below 135 kph. But Lamborghini is quick to point out that the slightest blip to the accelerator will immediately bring back all the cylinders to life.
Of course, if the driver doesn’t want it, there’s a switch to keep the car in full power mode at all times. But for those who care, the modifications have reduced the official fuel consumption by about 8%. Actually, in highway driving at moderate speeds, say 80 mph, Lamborghini says the gain is much higher, up to 20%. You may just wonder how a V12 sounds like with only half of its cylinders firing. At the very least, Lamborghini fans will notice with joy that the Italian brand reputation for high tech is undamaged: the Stop & Start system works with supercapacitors to ensure superfast restarts.