.... continued from part two

Engine and Performance

In essence, Murcielago has been designed to be exciting, unmistakable but also safe and ergonomic. Lamborghini's brief to the designer was simple: "we'll make the engine, you design the body to fit." The result is a creation in steel and carbon fibre precisely tailored to suit the engine, which enhances the performance of its twelve cylinders.

Murcielago's engine complies with the strictest emission standards in the world. A 12 cylinder, 60 degrees V design with a displacement of 6192cc, made entirely from aluminium alloy and designed for unleaded fuel, produces 570 bhp (426kW) at 7500 rpm, and 650 Nm torque (479 lb/ft) at 5400 rpm. The Lamborghini Murcielago can exceed 330km/h (over 200 mph) and accelerate from 0-100km/h in 3.8 seconds.

Torque delivery is optimised across the entire engine operating band (even at relatively low sports car speeds) thanks to the Variable geometry Intake System (VIS); Variable Valve Timing (VVT) on both inlet and exhaust camshafts; and the drive by wire electronic throttle control which makes for reduced emissions, improved idle speed control and improved driveability. At just 2000 rpm, the Murcielago produces more torque than the maximum value attained by the majority of Gran Turismo cars in today's market. This latest Lamborghini has, for the first time in the marque's history, a new six-speed gearbox, while the transmission retains the traditional Lamborghini layout. The clutch control system has been optimised by the fitting of a slave cylinder to the clutch release bearing, the result being a significant reduction in the force required to operate the clutch pedal. The 18" wheel rims feature a new design that improves air-cooling circulation around the brake disks and callipers, and new Pirelli tyres allow for a more comfortable ride, reduce road noise and improve handling. The braking system comprises of four disk brakes and two independent hydraulic circuits for front and rear axles, with a four-channel ABS system.

Equipment, Comfort and Safety

The interior has been especially and ergonomically designed for driver control and comfort, with all controls and instruments grouped together on a panel. These include a trip computer displaying average and maximum speeds, maximum acceleration, miles to empty (range) a chronometer and voltmeter.

Electric controls fold the electrically heated wing mirrors, the non-reflective rear view mirror, and also control the axle lifting system that, at low speeds, allows the car's front axle to be raised by 45mm.

Interior finish includes leather upholstery, three-spoke leather sports steering wheel, and a steel gear lever and selector gate in true Lamborghini tradition. Options include low ratio gears and satellite navigation system.

The door-opening angle has been widened by five degrees and the chassis side member under the door lowered by 25mm. Additional interior space has been proved for driver and passenger, through redesigning of the roof and increasing the size of the footwell. Interior noise levels are reduced thanks to use of special soundproofing materials, elimination on of undesirable noise channels, and by fitting acoustic insulation panels to the wheel arches to reduce road noise. A new climate control system has been fitted.

Passive safety standards have been significantly improved, with airbags for both driver and passenger. Murcielago also complies with all EU, Japanese and USA safety standards, including passenger protection in interior impact, occupant crash protection, side impact protection, inflammability of interior materials, and European directives for frontal, side and pole impact.
Published : 02/11/02 Author : Melanie Carter

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