LAMBORGHINI has revealed its fastest open top car to date - the spectacular 350kmh Aventador Roadster LP700-4.
Set to get its first public airing in the United States before the end of 2012, the new sun seeking supercar has been eagerly anticipated since the coupe version of the flamboyantly styled Aventador was launched as a replacement for the Murcielago early in 2011.
With the first left-hand-drive deliveries planned for early 2013, the Aventador Roadster is priced at £300,000, excluding local taxes in Europe. Australian pricing is yet to be announced. But with the Aventador coupe already wearing a $754,000 price tag don't expect any change from a cool $800,000.
In a departure from the earlier Murcielago Roadster and its rather crude looking fabric roof which was only suitable for use at speeds below 160kmh, the Aventador Roadster receives a newly conceived rigid structure to provide what Lamborghini describes as the ability to achieve high speeds with the roof in place, reduced levels of buffeting and improved levels of refinement.
The two piece roof makes use of the latest in carbon fibre construction technology, including a patented forged composite process developed by Lamborghini in partnership with parent company, Audi.
The Italian supercar maker claims the roof panels weigh just 12kg in total. Once removed, they can be stowed within the Aventador's front luggage compartment.
Cosmetic changes include a redesigned rear bulkhead accommodating rollover protection, a retractable rear window and a redesigned engine cover with two pairs of hexagonal windows to showcase the new car's extravagant engine bay.
The Aventador Roadster also comes with a wind deflector that attaches to the top of the windscreen frame to reduce buffeting within the cabin at speed as well as windows with chamfered edges to ensure a tight fit into the seal of the carbon fibre roof and new 20-inch front and 21-inch rear forged aluminium wheels that are claimed to reduce weight by 10kg compared with the Aventador coupe's standard rims.
The Aventador Roadster is powered by the same naturally aspirated 6.5-litre V12 engine as its coupe sibling. The mid-mounted unit, assembled by hand at Lamborghini's Sant'Agata headquarters in Italy, kicks out a monstrous 515kW at 8250rpm and 890Nm of torque at 5500rpm.
The heady reserves are channeled to all four wheels via a seven speed gearbox that features a novel stop/start system that uses super capacitors or so-called supercaps to restart the engine after it has been automatically shut down for added fuel savings.
Lamborghini is yet to reveal how much the various modifications made to the Aventador coupe's carbon fibre body structure in creating the Roadster add to its 1695kg kerb weight. But at 3.0 seconds, its claimed 0-100kmh time is a mere 0.1 seconds slower than the fixed roof Aventador. The two cars share the same 350kmh top speed.