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The Lamborghini Urus ST-X is all sport and no utility

Possible main car for on-road/off-road race series in 2020

This should do well both on and off the road. PHOTO FROM LAMBORGHINI

Do you remember the Lamborghini LM002? Yes, that tank-like monstrosity designed for Arab armed forces to run rings around Kalashnikov-wielding Islamic fundamentalists. But even with the V12 heart of a Countach shoehorned under its hood, the unwieldy LM002 lacks proper manners on the tarmac. The Italian automaker wants to make amends for this, and it’s going to do it with a track-ready version of the Urus.

Called the Urus ST-X, this beefed-up version of the already-meaty Urus was designed for a proposed one-make race for Lamborghini’s SUV. The series is set to debut in 2020 on purpose-built European and Middle Eastern tracks that will feature a mix of on- and off-road surfaces much like rallycross. While the Urus ST-X isn’t going to run around in the desert decapitating guerrilla separatists, the entertainment value of this ute speeding on a racetrack is an equally noble cause.

Lamborghini should compete in Dakar Rally. PHOTO FROM LAMBORGHINI

To make this bull fight-ready before it’s let loose on the streets of Pamplona, Lamborghini’s Squadra Corse division has fitted it with a host of FIA-spec goodies. A roll cage made of toughened steel preserves the aggressive lines of the Urus ST-X should it decide to perform on-track gymnastics. To make sure that the bull doesn’t turn into a juicy medium-rare steak, a fire suppression system and an FT3 fuel tank are fitted.

Pirelli wants you to know it provides the rubber for this rallycross machine. Nice sidewalls. PHOTO FROM LAMBORGHINI

Unlike the LM002 and its crazy powerplant, the Urus ST-X is powered by a rather conventional Volkswagen Group V8 boosted with a pair of snails. Thanks to oversized cooling ducts, this engine delivers a very race-worthy 650hp. Keeping all that power in check is a downforce-inducing rear wing and wide Pirellis wrapped around 21-inch lightweight wheels. But this is a Lamborghini. Expect the Urus ST-X to power-slide around corners with all four tires smoking courtesy of 850Nm of torque.

The Urus is indeed a worthy successor to the very quirky LM002. While the latter’s 12-cylinder engine never gave it the racing capability it probably deserved, the former’s ST-X guise certainly does justice to the term “super SUV.” And who knows? While the car is designed to compete in rallycross-type races, it could potentially be Lamborghini’s first foray into Dakar Rally.

Miggi Solidum

Professionally speaking, Miggi is a software engineering dude who happens to like cars a lot. And as an automotive enthusiast, he wants a platform from which he can share his motoring thoughts with fellow petrolheads. He pens the column ‘G-Force’.