Car video reviews:

Do Supercars Still Have Soul?...

... or are they just technologically advanced and very fast means of propulsion for the rich and, sometimes, famous? I have often asked myself (and others) this question, especially in the last few years, but an absolute truthful answer has evaded me so far. Let's have a look at some of the best known manufacturers of mouth watering four-wheeled creations, also known as supercars, or rolling works of art. I'll give Lamborghini as an example first, a brand created out of a sentiment of pure vengeance and competitiveness between two men who have become THE symbols of Italian supercar making. Other major supercar brands are not far from it also.

Originally just a manufacturer of tractors, air-conditioning equipment and hydraulic systems, Don Ferrucio Lamborghini is now, along with Enzo Ferrari and others, one of the very few people who understood that there are more than one prerequisite in order for a sports car to be absolutely desirable, in the "Angelina Jolie waiting naked and a bit wet on your bed" kind of way.

Usually, a supercar's main ingredients consist of obliterating performance, exquisite looks and of course, exclusivity. Obviously, each of these ingredients has its own recipe. But, and here comes a big "but" (pun not intended), what does a supercar have to possess in order for people to consider that it has a "soul"? Well, not long ago it only had to sport a Lamborghini badge on it. Nowadays? Much more than that, me thinks.

No matter how hardcore its handling can be, how strikingly beautiful it may look or how many numbers of it are being produced, to me the Reventon is a soulless Lamborghini. Before you start throwing rotten tomatoes, let me explain this... from a Lamborghini fan's point of view. The Reventon is a very exclusive... variation, if you like, of the already exclusive Murcielago, the most raging bull in the current Lamborghini lineup of raging bulls. So, exclusivity? Check.

Its normally aspirated V12 mill is vaguely based on the original Lamborghini V12, the one found in the gorgeous 350 GT. No less than 650 horsepower achieved at a stratospheric 8,000 rpm help it achieve 340 km/h (211 mph), while its naught to 100 km/h (62 mph) time is a staggering 3.4 seconds. Obliterating performance? Check.

Although based on the Murcielago, its bodywork looks like nothing with wheels this side of the F117 Nighthawk stealth bomber. Apparently Lamborghini designers were inspired by the F-22 Raptor fighter plane, among others, when they penned it. Exquisite looks? Check.

Why don't I think the Reventon has any soul, then? Well, you can call me old-fashioned, a purist, retarded, etc. but it's the... interior rearview mirror, which can be found in your "average" Audi with almost no modifications whatsoever. The idea behind my reasoning is this: the second when cost cutting becomes involved in the making of an all-out supercar produced in so few units you might pass through tens of rich and exclusive casinos all over the world before seeing one, then that car has absolutely no soul.

I have what some might call dumb reasoning like this for a number of other so-called exclusive supercar makers also. For example, the "nose high in the air"/"can't buy one of our models if you're not on a list" Ferrari used to be a pure bred manufacturer before whoring themselves with the fashionable and trendy California coupe/cabriolet. Apart from that, they are now starting to think about the future from a CO2 emissions point of view, not just from the "very fast"/"sex on wheels" they used to be.

Aston Martin ceased to have any soul after common Ford parts started to appear all over their cars. For example, did you know that the 700 horsepower hand-built V12 under the beastin' One-77's hood is based on the one powering the DB9? And that the V12 from the DB9 is essentially made from two Ford Mondeo V6s? Take that, exclusivity! And don't you come back here no more!

Just kidding, please come back!


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories