The Aventador can be described as a collection of racing-inspired technologies. The late Ferruccio Lamborghini despised road cars with motorsport-derived technical solutions, as these brought a major drivability drawback on public roads. Despite this, we really don't think he would be displeased with the LP700-4 . That's because modern engineering has allowed for all these racing-borrowed features to be perfectly implemented for daily use.
We'll start with the structure of the Aventador
. Carbon fiber is the main ingredient here and Lamborghini built a separate unit in its factory back in 2009. so that it could rely on in-house production. In fact, we are talking about carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP), which has a simpler fabrication process that keeps the Aventador from climbing even higher on the pricing ladder.
Different parts of the car's structure require different characteristics, so Lamborghini uses three CFRP manufacturing methods. Each one uses custom carbon fiber and weave, as well as a dedicated synthetic resin used.
The first is Resin Transfer Moulding (RTM), a process that sees the carbon fiber mats being performed and impregnated with a certain amount of resin. The part is kept inside the mould during the heat-curing process that follows. The technology is borrowed from outside the company, but Lambo enhanced the process, patenting a carbon fiber mould instead of the traditional heavy metallic one. This makes the operations more flexible and reduces costs, as the low injection pressure can be made with less expensive machines. RTM is the dominating process for building the car.
The RTM process also has a derivative called Braiding, which borrows the carbon fiber weave technology from the textile industry. To put it shortly, the fiber is diagonally interwoven in multiple layers. This technology is used to produce tubular components that offer extra strength such as the roof pillars.
The Prepeg technology follows: the supplier pre-injects the carbon fiber mats with a thermosetting liquid resin, which requires them to be stored in a refrigerating unit. The mats are subsequently laminated in molds and cured via pressure and heat inside an autoclave. These components are expensive to make, but they offer the best finish, so they are used for the areas that are visible.
The 229.5 kg (505 lbs) body-in-white of the Aventador is mainly comprised of a 147.5 kg (324.5 lbs) CFRP passenger cell, which uses aluminum subframes that hold the engine, gearbox and suspension in place. This is made from two sections, the tube (the floor) and the roof, which are joined using heat and finally form a single element. The front and rear walls also incorporate aluminum inserts that enhance the connection with the aforementioned subframes.
The Aventador's body-in-white manages to be 150 percent stiffer compared to that of the Murcielago, an asset that joggles with both driving and safety benefits.
The car's monocoque also uses epoxy foam parts. These act as spacers between the composite layers, increasing stiffness while also reducing the NVH (Noise Harshness and Vibration) level.
The stunning shapes of the car are sculpted in composite panels that use aluminum and plastic. These offer about the same weight advantage as carbon fiber, but at a much lower price. The aforementioned aluminum subframes and the composite body panels also lower the cost of a repair compared to a full-carbon structure.
The Aventador is connected to the road via a pushrod suspension supplied by Ohlins. This solution reduces the unsprung mass and offers a better packaging. As for the wheel & tire package, up front the car uses 19x9-inch forged rims wrapped in 225/35 R19 Pirelli P Zero rubber and at the back we have 20x12-inch forged wheels with 335/30 R20 tires.
The car is suspended on double wishbones at all four corners and there's a pushrod where the spring & damper were supposed to be located. The aluminum subframes hold the passive shock absorbers and springs, hence their removal from the unsprung mass calculation. These are connected to the pushroad via a bellcrank which is shaped like a triangle and also raises the stabilizer bar link.
Up front, the solution allowed the designers to create that sought-after low front end - a classical suspension would've required low-height springs and dampers, which can't offer the same level of ride and handling. At the back, the springs and dampers sit above the engine, in between the block and its the massive central muffler.
itself is held in place by the rear aluminum subframe and we have to tell you that we'd like to take the subframe's place for one day. Yes, we'd like to hug the 6,498 cc naturally aspirated V12 unit for at least 24 hours. This way. we'd directly feel the 700 hp delivered at 8,250 rpm and the 690 Nm (509 lb-ft) of torque that arrive at 5,500 rpm. In case you were wondering, the compression ratio has an impressive value: 11.8:1.
This is the first all-new V12 unit since the initial unit launched once with the company's inception in 1963. The L359 unit sits about 60 mm lower (2.36 inches) within the car compared to the 6.5-liter engine of the Murcielago.
While the displacement is the same, it comes from shorter cylinders. The bore was increased (88 mm), while the stroke was decreased (89 mm). Lamborghini was looking for assets such as a high rev limit, increased throttle response, instant torque delivery, as well as a more visceral sound and this is exactly what the unit provides.
The Aventador's engine is also light, tipping the scales at 235 kg ( 518 lbs). The mix between a low weight and a high-revving nature required special materials. The open-deck crankase is built from an aluminum-silicon alloy and so are the twin four-valve cylinder heads.
The unit uses a dry-sump lubrication system, just like the prototype for the aforementioned 1963 powerplant did. This assures lubrication even during high-speed cornering and also reduces the height of the engine. In addition to that, the forged crankshaft is nitride-hardened.
Things have evolved and the L539 comes with no less than eight scavenger pumps. The engine uses a high-pressure oil pump, as well as an oil-water cooler and an oil-air radiator make sure that the unit works at the correct temperatures.
When the engine is in the warm-up phase, a less complex water circuit is used to complete the process faster. There's a second water circuit that also includes the external coolers, which is only used when necessary.
A glance through the glass engine cover will reveal the generously-sized intake system. This includes four individual throttle valves and uses a variable path to suit any conditions. Thus, the intake comes with two flaps, multiple channels, as well as a bypass.
The exhaust system, which uses a three-into-one layout, is just as complex. This comes with four pre-catalytic converters placed in the proximity of the engine and two catalytic converters located just ahead of the muffler. Speaking of the last, there's a generously-sized casing that includes two distinct mufflers, a low-volume and a high-volume one. The package also includes valves for controlling the sound.
Other new-age technologies such as variable timing for both the intake and the exhaust have been used, but not direct injection. Audi gifted the Gallardo's engine with FSI direct injection for superior efficiency and a touch of extra performance. Ferrari doesn't miss any opportunity to advertise this feature of its engines, so why wasn't this used for the flagship Lambo's engine?
The answer consists of two arguments against the feature. First of all, a direct injection system would've increased the engine height. Such a solution would've also increased the weight, as it requires an extra particulate filtering system. Lamborghini preferred to offer almost the same performance and efficiency without the two aforementioned drawbacks. But don't worry, if this engine will be around for half a century like its predecessor was, it has enough time to have its fuel directly sprayed into its combustion chambers.
The all-new powerplant is offered with a bonus: a transmission that's just as new and innovative. We are talking about Lamborghini's Independent Shifting Rods seven-speed robotised manual gearbox
This is an automated manual not a double-clutch unit, as Lambo wanted to keep the gear changes emotional. This is much more compact and lighter compared to a dual-clutch unit. It's roughly the same size as a standard manual and tips the scales at 70 kg (154 lbs). More importantly, the ISR gearbox can shift gears in as little as 50 milliseconds, not too far from an F1 car's sub-40 millisecond average shift time.
The ISR gearbox shifts about 140 percent faster than the Gallardo's e-gear
, which itself changes gear 40 percent quicker compared to the e-gear transmission of the pre-facelift model. Now that's (neck-snapping) progress.
The transmission uses a two-shaft layout, with the synchronizing rings being made from carbon fiber. To be more precise, the gear wheels from even and uneven gears are separated and each shifting sleeve is actuated by its own shifting rod. As the first shifting rod disengages a gear, the other is already engaging the next one, with the movements partially overlapping.
The ISR gearbox uses four independent shifting rods, which are operated using hydraulic actuators. Pressure comes from an electric pump, which works with seven hydraulic valves. The transmission relies on a double-plate clutch that's also hydraulically operated.
Once the horses exit the ISR gearbox, they're sent to the road via a four-wheel drive system
that's also received technical investment. The Murcielago, as well as the Gallardo, uses a viscous coupling central differential that doesn't have electronic control, relying on self-regulation. The Aventador was gifted with a Haldex IV electronically controlled coupling. The front wheels can receive between 0 and 60 percent of the engine's torque, depending on the driving conditions.
At the back, the power is channeled through a mechanical limited slip differential, while the ESP mimics the action of such a unit for the front wheels. A second mechanical LSD wouldn't have been a viable option due to the weight penalty brought by this.
Lamborghini has developed a complex powertrain electronic management system
. It's interesting to see how the company takes pride in its multi-unit setup, while Ferrari advertises the fact that it has united everything under the roof of a single ECU
The Aventador uses a main ECU, as well as a secondary smart actuators unit and two extra black boxes described as "smart sensors". While the Prancing Horse brags it has reduced response time by integrating all the functions into a single ECU, the Raging Bull tells us that the ECU is faster thanks to the fact that some of its functions are handled by the smart actuators.
As for the two aforementioned smart sensors monitor each cylinder's combustion in real time, using the spark plugs as the actual sensors, thus optimizing engine management.Continue reading
LAMBORGHINI Aventador technical data summary
Engine: 6498 cm3 cc V12 petrol
Transmission: Independent Shifting Rods automated manual
Dimensions: 188.2 in OR 4780 mm length / 79.9 in OR 2029 mm (without mirrors) width / 44.7 in OR 1135 mm height
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