Geneva Motor Show: When exclusive just isn't enough
The Mansory Lamborghini Aventador Carbonado GT. (Newspress)
Published Friday, March 7, 2014 1:40PM EST
What Swiss tuning house Mansory does could be viewed as some car design purists an act of automotive sacrilege, but for a growing number of well-heeled car lovers and collectors, the services it provides are seen as the only way of ensuring that a supercar really is super.
To some, the Lamborghini Aventador is perfect in every way. Its looks can even give onlookers levels of whiplash akin to actually driving it on a track.
Then there's the engine hidden by those incredible visuals, capable of 0-100km/h in 2.9 seconds and a top speed in excess of 350km/h -- making it as as good as or better than anything any other hypercar maker can offer.
And it's rare. Only 500 are built each year and only 4000 will ever be made. And don't forget the price, around $350,000 before any optional extras are specified.
But to Mansory, the car is simply a good starting point for creating something that is more stunning, faster, rarer, and, of course, expensive.
The result, the Mansory Lamborghini Aventador Carbonado GT, unveiled this week at Geneva, has had its entire body reimagined in carbon fiber. But it's more than just a visual makeover: the new body is packed full of new aerodynamic elements culminating in a new rear wing and diffuser. Neither of which are there for show.
That's because under the hood, the Lamborghini's 6.5-liter V12 has company, in the form of two turbochargers that when at full spin pretty much double horsepower from the stock 700hp (515 kW) to what Mansory describes as an "impressive" 1600hp.
This drops the 0-100km/h time to 2.1 seconds (making it one of the fastest accelerating cars in the world) and as for top speed, the company will only say that it is comfortably over 370km/h.
Sticking huge turbos on an engine will make any car faster, once or twice. But then the engine will overheat or throw a rod and the fun will be over. Mansory has totally overhauled the engine -- from the connecting rods, rod bearings, crankshaft, crank to cylinder head and there's also a custom exhaust system designed to make the car just as reliable and user-friendly as a ‘stock' Lamborghini.
Inside, the cabin is decked in the finest hand-stitched leather, the doors get carbon fiber inserts, there's a new steering wheel and a highly polished starter button has been fitted to the roof lining so that it feels like firing up a jet fighter, rather than a road-going vehicle every time you climb into the cockpit.
As well as turning already potent Lamborghinis into fire-breathing monsters, Mansory is just as comfortable working its magic on Ferraris, McLarens, Bentleys, Rolls-Royces, Aston Martins and even Bugattis.
And as for the cost, that's down to exactly what you have in mind. The car on show in Geneva is simply the starting point.