I was once told — either by my grandmother or mother — that God doesn’t send you down a path you can’t preserve through. If God is real, and he or she does indeed have some grand design or mettle’s in human affairs, for the life of all that is holy, maybe give me a break?
Suffice it to say, it’s been beyond rough. That’s why, when a Lamborghini as white as the freshly cut cocaine that likely propelled its designer to manically sharpen edges, add wild wings, grant the engine an exhaust note worthy of Zeus himself, and a spine-tingling power-band, showed up on my doorstep just a few weeks ago, I welcomed the lunacy of this reprieve.
My plan, if there really was a plan, for my three-day “psychological vacation” was to conquer the arterial-like tarmac of Angeles Crest Highway outside of Los Angeles proper in the Lamborghini Huracan Performante Bianco Icarus. Nature, however, like life, had other plans. Plans that involved enough rain to close roads, decimate homes, and turn my half-concocted plan to turn Angeles Crest into Le Mans on its heads. My projected roads had been all-but closed — what was I to do? How does one experience a 640-horsepower Italian demon, a monster with real downforce and active aerodynamics that give it the ability to turn in like a million-plus-dollar hypercar, without taking it into one of the most enjoyable sections of road on the planet?
I wasn’t sure what to do, but when the rain lifted, I left the safety of my enclosed parking garage and yowled into the echo chamber-like city streets around downtown Los Angeles.
There would be no blasts down the highway — although, after a short run up through second gear, I was stopped by a sheriff who asked that I temper my exuberance. My time with the Lamborghini turned into something much more needed than pretending Angeles Crest was Le Mans or the Nurburgring. It became a sanctuary from the hell that was so bent on breaking my spirit. A time away from my nagging thoughts, allowing me to focus just on the lightning-fast supercar, its fiery persona, and how every time you flip the starter cover up and depress the big red ignition, you get the biggest shit-eating smile of your life plastered across your stupid grinning mug.
All hail, Lamborghini, and the wonderfully childish insanity the company has toward the automobile!
With that starter pressed my cares, worries, and thoughts of, “How else was the universe planning to fuck me?” washed away with the howl of that glorious V-10 fusillade. All hail, Lamborghini, and the wonderfully childish insanity the company has toward the automobile!
Sensibility and restraint aren’t in Lamborghini’s lexicon and does that ever show when slicing through the ruined and battered city streets of old Los Angeles. As some of its residents struggle for food, and the buildings that once housed much of the cities food stocks crumble, the Lamborghini looks out of place. The swan-white exterior, coupled with the crushed carbon fiber aero pieces, including its mini picnic table rear wing, are straight out of my elementary school car drawings. Mirrored in the countless puddles that had accumulated throughout downtown, the Huracan Performante appears otherworldly. This is a supercar meant for the racetrack. A supercar that demolished the Nurburgring and did so faster than Porsche’s 918 Spyder hypercar. This is not it’s natural habitat. But driving down the pitted streets, you’d never know it due to just how comfortable the car rides.
Now, I’m not saying it’s a Rolls-Royce. It most definitely isn’t. But neither is it as racy as its stats, performance and stupidly (awesomely) psychotic exterior would have you believe. With the Performante’s adjustable suspension in its softest setting, the craggy bumps and oft buckled pieces of concrete throughout the city’s infrastructure are rarely transmitted past the shocks and dampers into the cabin to the driver. You’ll hear the bumps more than you’ll feel them. It actually could make the hellacious Lamborghini a candidate for your next daily driver, so long as your bank account is large enough.
Lamborghini’s Huracan Performante feels like the last of a generation. Beethoven’s final symphony. It’s a magical noise.
Inside the cabin, everything is Alcantara. The bucket seats, steering wheel, headliner; everything. There’s also a pretty good stereo. But honestly, Lamborghini could have left it out completely as the only thing you’ll want to listen to is that naturally aspirated V-10.
The supercar world at large is one that is gradually reducing its decibels. Gone are the naturally aspirated engines of old — those chest-thumping V-8s, the wolf-like V-10s, the screaming V-12s. In their place, turbocharged or hybridized power plants without the noise of their ancestors. The world, as one friend of mine described it, is going quiet. Lamborghini’s Huracan Performante feels like the last of a generation. Beethoven’s final symphony. It’s a magical noise. One that thoroughly invades every fiber of your being. Through all your cells, your molecules, your atoms. All you’ll want to do is find another straight to bury the gas pedal and listen to it as the motor revs to a 9,000-rpm redline. Then bang a shift and listen to it all over again. Though if you’d do shift past second gear with your right foot flat, maybe just do it at a racetrack.
With the rain returning, I headed back to the safety of the garage. The roads weren’t the ones I had anticipated. Nor was the experience. I desperately wanted time to conquer canyons, reduce tarmac to rubble, and tire myself out as I wrestled the Huracan Performante through tight corners, long straights, and cambered apexes. But what I found through my uncharacteristic Lamborghini experience is that, when driving a Lamborghini, it honestly doesn’t matter where you go or how you use the car. Lamborghinis are these otherworldly weapons devoid of sensibility and the mundane. They give unique experiences no matter the day, weather, time, or driver. I also found a mindset that normally only comes when I ride a motorcycle. I wasn’t thinking of all the hell in my life. I wasn’t thinking of what was to come. I was purely in the moment. Nothing but the drive swirled through my head.
Do I still want to cane the Huracan Performante through those coiled roads? Hell yeah. This is a car that’s built for demolishing racetracks, roads, and your preconceptions of what an entry-level Lamborghini can do. It yearns for it. And on a racetrack, it’s breathtakingly fast. After my day out in the rain and a previous track visit, the Huracan Performante is one of those cars that, if I had the money (or if I robbed a bank), I’d drop the $274,390 to have it in my garage. When it came time to give the Performante back, I recalled those words about preserving that my family told me. Maybe the Lamborghini was that little respite in a sea of awful? Maybe it was my island? Maybe I can get through this? Maybe I just need a Lamborghini? Yeah, definitely that last one.
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