Next year will see Automobili Lamborghini launch an all-new race series - the world's fastest one-make series. In May 2009, the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo takes to the track with its first race. By the end of October, it will have completed 18 races on famous European circuits, supporting popular series like the Deutsche Tourenwagen-Meisterschaft (DTM), the FIA GT Series and the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). To participate, the factory is offering its customers an exclusive sports machine - the Gallardo Super Trofeo with 419 kW (570 hp), a reworked chassis and significantly reduced weight.
The Super Trofeo is the only one-make series in the motorsport world to feature cars with all-wheel drive. It is Lamborghini's clear objective to ensure that it will be the fastest single-brand series in the world - partly due to the technical superiority of the all-wheel drive principle. From May, the Super Trofeo will make guest appearances at six race events - at Silverstone (UK), on the Adria International Raceway (Italy), on the Norisring (Germany), in Spa (Belgium), in Barcelona (Spain) and in Monza (Italy).
Lamborghini is building 30 cars for the Super Trofeo, which they are making available to individual enthusiasts, as well as to Lamborghini dealer teams. The factory will enter one car itself, and plans to commission well-known guest drivers to take the wheel. And on the edge of the racing action, the Super Trofeo Village hospitality venue will be available.
The Super Trofeo race car is based on the Gallardo LP 560-4, powered by the new 5.2 litre V10 with direct fuel injection (IDS), generating an increased output of 419 kW (570 hp). Its power flows through the e.gear six-speed robotized gear box to the permanent all-wheel drive with viscous traction - the kind of power transmission perfectly suited to motorsport.
The Super Trofeo is a top-class race car in every detail. Its chassis, featuring double wishbone suspension all round, has been reworked specifically for the purpose. The competition tyres are supplied by Pirelli and a specialist racing brake system provides brutal stopping power with racing ABS. Additional body components such as the large, fixed rear wing are made from carbon-fibre composite. The cockpit hosts an ultra-light race seat, a racing steering wheel and additional specialized racing instruments.
The Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo series - Racing fascination from Lamborghini
The Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo will take to the track in May 2009 and is the only one-make series in the world to feature all-wheel drive cars. It is set to be the fastest single-brand race series anywhere in the world - that is Lamborghini?s clearly stated objective.
This November sees Lamborghini begin work in Sant'Agata Bolognese on the construction of the 30 race cars that will constitute the starting grid. In spring and summer 2009, the Super Trofeo will run 18 races on well-known European circuits, starting on 3 May in Silverstone (UK), then on 17 May on the Adria International Raceway (Italy), 5 July on the Norisring in Nuremberg (Germany), 2 August in Spa (Belgium), 20 September in Barcelona (Spain) and on 4 October in Monza (Italy).*Dates provisional
For all six race weekends, the new Lamborghini single-brand trophy will find itself in sterling company - in Nuremberg and Barcelona, it will enjoy the track with the Deutsche Tourenwagen-Meisterschaft (DTM), while the Monza race is in co-operation with the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). In Silverstone, Adria and Spa, the Super Trofeo will complement the FIA GT sports car championship.
The rules are straightforward: either one or two drivers per car can register for the series. On Friday, there are two 30-minute sessions: free practice followed by qualifying. The first race takes place on Saturday, with two further races during the race weekend. Each race lasts approximately 40 minutes and the results are added together. No additional weight penalty will be imposed on the most successful vehicles. The cars may not be modified during the season - all relevant components - engine, transmission and chassis - are marked accordingly.
The title sponsor of the Super Trofeo is exclusive Swiss watch-maker Blancpain.
The price tag - 200,000 Euro per car
Lamborghini is offering the competition vehicles and replacement parts via its dealerships, with each car costing 200,000 euros plus tax. Both professional and 'gentleman' drivers with an International Competition Licence (A, B or C) are free to enter the Super Trofeo, as are teams from Lamborghini dealerships. The factory will also enter its own car, and is lining up celebrity drivers for guest appearances at the wheel. During the race weekends, Lamborghini provides support to all drivers with an outstanding technology and parts service.
In the paddock, drivers, sponsors and guests can relax and enjoy themselves in the stylish hospitality area, the Super Trofeo Village.
The technology - Breathtaking power
The technical basis for the Super Trofeo is already a winner - no less than the Gallardo LP 560-4, the brand's latest model. The constructors took the basic design of its engine, transmission and chassis then carried out extensive detailed rework and refinement of all components to prepare them for racetrack performance - with the target of making the Super Trofeo the fastest one-make series in the world
As is the case for all Lamborghinis, the race car's engine is mounted longitudinally. Located amidships, the V10 was newly developed for the LP 560-4 and has a displacement of 5,204 cm3. At 6,500 r/min, it generates 540 Nm of torque at the crankshaft and, at 8,000 r/min, a breathtaking 419 kW (570 hp). The increase of 7 kW (10 hp) against the series production model is the result of recalibrated engine management. The exhaust system was also specially developed for the task to be extremely lightweight. The V10 works with it to produce a technical symphony of powerful harmonics that builds up through the revs with a meaty crescendo to finish in a mighty fortissimo.
The naturally aspirated ten-cylinder is race engine perfection. Its number of cylinders forms the ideal synthesis of high performance, potent pulling power, light-footed high revving, low weight and compact dimensions. Its technical refinements include dry sump lubrication, which guarantees oil supply even under extreme lateral acceleration, while at the same time lowering the centre of gravity. The 90-degree cylinder angle on the crank case serves the same purpose. The block is cast in hypereutectic aluminium alloy, with the bore surfaces machined from solid. The connecting rods are made from forged steel and the pistons are aluminium.
The V10 features direct injection - "Iniezione Diretta Stratificata" - which fires the fuel through laterally-positioned injectors into the combustion chambers at pressures of up to 100 bar. Direct injection reduces knock sensitivity and provides a degree of internal cooling - thus enabling a higher compression ratio of 12.5:1, which results in a mighty power output and high levels of fuel efficiency. All four camshafts feature variable adjustment, facilitating a wide spectrum of valve control times and thus improving charge characteristics throughout the entire rev range.
Power-to-weight ratio Only 2.28 kilograms per hp
The specific output of the short-stroke engine is 109.5 hp per litre of displacement - each hp has to move no more than 2.28 kilograms, because the race car weighs in at only 1,300 kg dry.
Like the LP 560-4, the Super Trofeo also features all-wheel drive with "viscous traction" - an exclusive technology from Lamborghini. The viscous coupling in the driveline, which functions without electronic control, distributes the driving force under normal operating conditions at a ratio of 30:70. If necessary, it adjusts to specific requirements and driving conditions within just a few milliseconds. Grip is optimised at the rear axle via a mechanical differential providing up to 45 percent limited slip.
With a weight distribution of 43:57 between the front and rear axles, the Super Trofeo boasts the perfect balance for a race car. Lamborghini first introduced all-wheel drive in 1993 on the Diablo VT, because it is the best technology for the highest performance. Four driven wheels have more grip than two, enabling the driver to accelerate earlier when exiting a curve. It is not only traction that benefits from permanent all-wheel drive, but also lateral dynamics and stability.
Lamborghini is equipping the Super Trofeo with its e.gear robotized transmission as standard. It changes gear at the speed of lightning, especially at higher loads and engine speeds. The electronic gear box management, controlled by the driver via shift paddles behind the steering wheel, is optimised for the shortest possible shift times and the highest engine speed. In the race car version, Lamborghini hands over full responsibility for manoeuvring at the limit of the driver.
The chassis - Optimised for the race track
The Super Trofeo also demonstrates its supreme potential when it comes to the chassis. Aluminium double wishbones guide all four wheels, with an additional track rod adding extra stability to the rear axle. The rack and pinion steering, with discrete fluid cooling, connects the driver directly to the track thanks to its high-precision operating characteristics and relatively low power assistance. While the axle guide bearings remain unchanged, the springs are harder and the dampers shorter.
The Super Trofeo moves on 18 inch light alloy wheels, each only weighing approximately 10 kilograms. The rims are dressed in Pirelli racing tyres.
The braking system has also been developed specifically for the extreme demands of motorsport. Behind the front wheels are steel discs measuring 375 millimetres in diameter and 34 millimetres thick, while the dimensions at the rear are 365×32 mm. On the front axle, Lamborghini has mounted eight-piston callipers, with six-piston callipers to the rear. The ABS anti-lock brake system is set-up specifically for racing.
The bodyshell - Radically lightweight
Only 1,300 kilograms (dry weight) - the Super Trofeo shows its race car character on the scales too. Compared with the series production sports car, the weight has been reduced by 110 kg; this includes the ca. 35 kg added by the extra, high-strength safety cage essential for motorsport.
The bodyshell of the Super Trofeo is 4.34 metres long, 1.90 metres wide and only 1.16 metres high. It is built using the spaceframe method - cast nodes and extruded profiles create a frame into which aluminium panels are friction locked and form fitted. In typical Lamborghini fashion, the bodyshell is not only extremely light, it is also exceptionally safe and boasts tremendous torsional stiffness - forming the basis for its outstanding handling characteristics.
One glance is all it takes to see that the Super Trofeo is a top-class race car. The front skirt and the splitter that directs the airflow beneath the specially smoothed aluminium underbody, the rear bonnet and front compartment cover, the side skirts, the diffuser, the rear skirt and the large wing are all made from carbon-fibre composite. Using screws, the rear wing can be repositioned to suit the requirements of the various demanding race tracks. The bonnet and front compartment panels are opened and closed using quick-release fasteners. All windscreens and windows are made from Makrolon lightweight hi-tech polycarbonate instead of glass.
The Interior - The beauty of functionality
The majority of the weight savings achieved by Lamborghini in the Super Trofeo took place in the vehicle's interior. Finished in black Alcantara, its panels are made from carbon-fibre composite. The roof and parts of the doors are presented uncovered - displaying the raw beauty of functional technology. The carpet and sound-absorbing acoustic materials have been removed, as have the dual-zone climate control and audio and multimedia systems. Regardless of weight removal, every one of the uncompromisingly high-quality criteria characteristic to the Lamborghini brand still applies - even more so in the construction of the Super Trofeo.
Instead of the series production electrically adjustable sports seats, the Super Trofeo is equipped with one low-mounted racing bucket seat, which provides perfect ergonomic support to the driver. The seat is produced in extremely light and stiff Kevlar carbon-fibre composite and upholstered in black fabric. Its underside is made from black anodized aluminium. Six-point racing harnesses secure the upper body. The racing bucket seat alone saves over 50 kilograms.
A data display system integrated into the race car's CAN bus retains all the key information relating to the function and status of the technology. The small racing steering wheel with its chunky rim can be removed for entering the vehicle via a quick-release fastener. Shift lights in the instrument panel indicate when a rev limit has been reached, while an additional display shows lap times. A main switch for the on-board electrical network and a fire extinguishing system - both of which can be activated from outside the vehicle - complete the specific equipment in the race car made for the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo.
The official press release from Automobili Lamborgini SpA on Gallardo Blancpain Super Trofeo