Lamborghini Urus Performante India review: Rally rumble in the ranks

4.5 out of 5
Pros
  • Rally Mode
  • Dominant Road Presence
  • Ease of driving on regular roads
Cons
  • Significantly more expensive than Urus
  • Lamborghini Urus Performante takes the strengths of Urus SUV and adds generous doses of performance-oriented updates.
The Lamborghini Urus Performante was launched in India in late 2022.
The Lamborghini Urus Performante was launched in India in late 2022.

There are few cars that can do it all. There are fewer still that can call themselves a Lamborghini Urus. And when an Urus decides to ditch the road and get real dirty, you know you're watching a super-expensive but super-duper exclusive Lamborghini Urus Performante ditching its carefully-crafted heritage on race tracks for the challenges of the real world. Welcome to the real world, one where no dirt track is dirty enough to slow down the charge of this Lamborghini.

The Lamborghini Urus SUV has been a phenomenal success for the Italian supercar maker the world over. For decades, Lamborghini has manufactured some of the most iconic and some of the fastest race cars that have shattered race track times with manic disdain. But the scope beyond the boundary walls of the racetrack has been rather limited. And in this sense, the Urus - an entirely new body type - has been such a cornerstone moment for the Italians. The Urus Performante then, much like the name suggests, tries to raise the bar higher still.

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Here in India, the rising success of Lamborghini is directly linked to the rising acceptance and meteoric sales of Urus the world over. The company announced in June of last year that it had sold 200 units of the full-bodied super-luxury SUV in the country in around four years since its first launch here. That's remarkable considering each imported unit is priced at 3.15 crore even before taxes kick in. Around 80 per cent of Urus buyers are first-time Lamborghini buyers. And the company is confident a fair share of future potential buyers want even more and hence, in comes the Urus Performante.

Watch: Lamborghini Urus Performante SUV: Track test review

What's the difference between Lamborghini Urus and Lamborghini Urus Performante?

Lamborghini Urus Performante gets some very prominent performance-oriented updates.
Lamborghini Urus Performante gets some very prominent performance-oriented updates.

Most buyers of a Lamborghini are particularly in it to make a statement on the road. An Urus makes this statement as much as the newer Urus Performante and the around extra 1 crore for the latter may not be evident at initial stares, in terms of styling. But not evident does not mean non existent.

Priced at 4.22 crore before taxes, the Lamborghini Urus Performante is ridiculous - ridiculously fast, ridiculously light(er) and ridiculously wilder. At this point, Lamborghini engineers are just injecting already flexed muscles with generous doses of performance steroids. The 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 of the Urus stays but has been re-tuned to offer a minor 16 hp bump up for max power of 657 hp on the Urus Performante. But coupled with the fact that the Performante is around 47 kilos lighter courtesy carbon fiber hood and roof, and lighter wheels, this makes a noticeable difference on the power move.

The Urus Performante also gets a new titanium exhaust system and the air suspensions have been replaced with steel coil springs which makes it sit lower and promises to enhance its off-road, on-track abilities. A new rear spoiler, carbon-fibre diffuser and a wider track help the SUV's aero and rear downforce. Then of course, there are some mammoth 23-inch Pirelli P Zero tyres with aerodynamic alloys.

What does the Lamborghini Urus Performante offer in the cabin?

The Urus SUV is a relatively comfortable five-seater unless being pushed to what it likes to do best - race forward and slide from side to side. The luxury aspect is apparent though on the Urus Performante with a lot of Alcantara now coming as standard. The display screen has new graphics and there is some fair share of chrome and a lot of customisation options.

How does Lamborghini Urus Performante perform on road?

Driving an SUV that measures well over 5,000 mm and weighs in excess of two tonnes can seem like a daunting prospect. Plus its price tag is an omnipresent factor of course. But to be chauffer-driven in an Urus or Urus Performante would be such a shame. Luckily, the SUV makes it near effortless for the person behind the wheel. Here is a beast that can be a genial beauty when you want it to be.

On city roads, the large proportions of the Urus Performante will take a bit to get accustomed to but as far as its drive dynamics are concerned, there is really no rocket science involved. A steady foot on the pedal is more than enough to get the SUV moving through traffic with the eager transmission curbing its enthusiasm extremely well in Strada drive mode. On wider and cleaner roads, the Sport mode activates a bit more thrill. And then there is the Corsa mode for the tracks of course. But while the Urus has these three modes, the Performante adds one more - Rally!

Kicking up a dust storm, Lamborghini style!

The Rally mode on the Urus Performante is the new addition to the super luxury vehicle, apart from the three standard drive modes.
The Rally mode on the Urus Performante is the new addition to the super luxury vehicle, apart from the three standard drive modes.

The Rally model on the Lamborghini Urus Performate is what is likely to appeal to those who have the budget to pay the extra. The active anti-roll bars now come as standard and the quicker gear shifts helps the SUV pick up pace almost as quick as its sportier, low-sitting siblings. Just a few years ago, it was never thought that there ever would be a Lamborghini romancing a dirt track. But the passion with which the Urus Performante kisses the rough roads courtesy the P Zero tyres, one knows the magic spun by the automotive cupids at Sant'Agata Bolognese.

The background score to elevate the pleasure comes through the more pronounced exhaust notes but the most impressive highlight by far is how well the onboard engineering and electronics work to ensure that regardless of how quick you may attack corners, the Urus Performante goes above and beyond to assist a drift and then straighten itself out. Imagine an elephant of an SUV sprinting - twisting and turning - with the grace of a Cheetah. That, in a nutshell, is the Lamborghini Urus Performante.

Lamborghini Urus Performante Verdict

Lamborghini India says the Urus and Urus Performante are both sold out in the country. Even though the number of units for both are limited, this is still quite a flex. The Urus is a super expensive SUV and the Performante more so.

You may buy the Urus to make a statement but rest assured, the Urus Performante is bought for the sheer extra performance that it offers. And in that sense, assuming the budget allows for it, here is where the bar is justifiably raised.

First Published Date: 09 Mar 2023, 12:59 PM IST
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