The Italian brand, which has the youngest owner demographic of any supercar manufacturer in the world, is led by Stefano Domenicali, who strongly believes that while his competitors have gone down the turbo or electrification path, it's Lamborghini's insistence on staying with its noisy and evocative naturally-aspirated engines, as well as its design, that have helped foster a new generation of fans.
“From one side in the normal auto industry, there is this push for electrification, autonomous drive and digitisation. On the other hand, you will see the ones that are following us more are the youngsters, and that, in my view, has something to say to us,” Domenicali told CarAdvice at the launch of the Huracan Performante in Italy yesterday.
“So you would believe that from one side, because a normal car for youngsters and teenagers is not relevant, it’s just a commodity to move from A-to-B. In the meantime, when they see us, we are aspirational and different to other brands, and they are in love with our brand.
“That’s why we are more convinced if we can be current with these kinds of things [such as naturally-aspirated engines] and can show on the technical side we can improve these performance and respecting the general architecture of our care, and on the other side we can still work very hard on the brand value and design of the car and these feelings - if you match these two things, we do believe that we have the right space for our dimension because no one wants for us to be out of our niche.”
Domenicali says that for its brand to ditch its V10 and V12 engines and go further down-market with smaller-capacity engines featuring turbo or electric assistances, would be a bad move.
“It would be a big mistake to be squeezed down from a super sports car niche versus a premium brand, we are different, for us it’s a must that we keep this differentiation. Because the more we are squeezed down, we don’t have the dimension, we don’t have the investment to react to a segment that is not ours.”
The Lamborghini Urus SUV will follow the brand’s DNA also, Domenicali says, which means it not follow any trends set in that segment so far.
“We do believe that even in the new segment that we are going to jump in, we are going to be true to our values. It’s a product that will be different to other products on the market, you will recognise that it is a Lamborghini.
"This is the fundamental framework on which, every time we do something, we need to confront ourselves. Because, if we make the mistake of following others, we will be wrong. It’s a must for us to see what others are doing, but it doesn’t mean if they do something that we need to follow them, because that would be a big mistake,” he said.
According to Domenicali, the brand listens first and foremost to its current and upcoming customers. So, whilst its popularity and sales continue to grow, it will stick with its strategy of being different to the rest.
“If the youngsters were the first to not follow us… if it was the opposite [of what we have now] I would be very worried, but this is why we have this view [towards turbocharged engines and electrification].
Lamborghini’s average new customer age is around 35-40, with some regions as low as 27-32 years old.