Open Air Theatre
evo India|November 2019
There are few supercars more dramatic in terms of looks and sound, but is the new Lamborghini Huracán Evo Spyder an exercise in vanity or a serious driving machine?
Adam Towler
THIS MORNING OUR HOUSE FLOODED. A thunderstorm let rip overhead with such ferocity that there was a fast-flowing river running past the front door, and the kitchen floor was soon underwater. Even worse, earlier the same morning, somehow, incomprehensibly, we’d run out of teabags. Horrific.

The freakish weather also meant the photoshoot for the magazine now ran about six hours late, and while the opportunity to once again get behind the wheel of the Formula 1 car you can read about on page 74 was like a mirage in a desert of soggy calamity, Bedford Autodrome’s noise limitations placing effectively a 65kmph top speed on our running was a cruel form of torture, and required the self-restraint of the most pious medieval monk.

The F1 car’s presence also had the effect of reducing the allure of the Arancio Xanto-painted Huracán Evo Spyder that was included in the shoot to virtually nil, and anyway, it’s the Spyder variant, and if any supercar sways towards the ‘Knightsbridge’ end of the spectrum rather than the Evo end, it’s Lamborghini’s baby roadster. After the tinge of disappointment that hung around the Huracán Evo coupe for reasons I’ll explain shortly, I think it’s fair to say that expectations for the significantly heavier, wobblier, soft top version aren’t especially high.

Yes, I know: it’s still an orange Lamborghini, and no, I don’t expect any sympathy, just as I feel sure there will be those beside themselves with excitement at the merest thought of a drop-top Lambo. But if you view supercars as increasingly nonsensical, irrelevant and largely the preserve of those whose online images usually have themselves centre stage rather than the car, then this is pretty much the apogee of that generation. It’s about making noise, being seen, banging on about what color you’re going to choose – but not particularly about driving. Or is it?

It doesn’t help that by the time we leave Bedford Autodrome it’s late afternoon, the schedule to get any meaningful photography on the Lambo before it gets dark feels ludicrously tight, and the Spyder already seems determined to sabotage any positive feelings I might have towards it. I remember now how the R8 Spyder drew flak for its compromised interior space over the coupe, and this Lambo, unsurprisingly given the family ties, has the same flaw.

I appreciate this next paragraph may be superfluous if you’re not over six feet tall, but the reduction in cabin length means the seat just doesn’t go back far enough (it’s also set very high), and the result is I feel ridiculous – like I’m trying to drive a child’s batterypowered toy car, the blast of slipstream air battering my forehead, or with the roof up, my head tilted to one side in an attempt to not bulge the cloth roof panel. It’s only when I remember the old Murciélago/Aventador trick of moving the seat forward, against logic, then reclining the seat-back, before sliding downwards so my knees are almost level with my chin, that I can properly drive it. It works, as the wheel comes towards you further than in any other car I can recall; it’s almost like they intended you to sit like that. It’s possibly not so good for your back muscles, though.

The Huracán Evo’s new tablet-style infotainment system may exude a sophisticated palette of colors and graphics, but the usual problem of the touchscreen-only way of controlling a car’s functions is that while it may have worked brilliantly in the studio, on the road it can be infuriating, with all those key functions once taken for granted now taking twice as long to execute, and often requiring more than one attempt. I know there’s a gesture shortcut to control the sound system volume, but I can’t for the life of me seem to repeat it, so it’s two presses every time you need to adjust. And only Lamborghini could give you a steering wheel smothered with various buttons and not include any for adjusting the volume.

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