Newest Lamborghini uses composites in new ways

The Lamborghini Aventador J, introduced this week at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, features a carbon fiber composite monocoque similar to its predecessor, the LP 700-4. New in this version is a carbon fiber fabric for the seats called Carbonskin, carbon fiber fan blades for the brakes, carbon fiber in the bumpers and other innovations.

On March 5, at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, Automobili Lamborghini introduced the Aventador J, a 515-kW/700-hp two-seater, that uses carbon fiber composites in several new ways. The car is said to be the most expensive Lamborghini ever made.

“With the Lamborghini Aventador J, we have molded our brand DNA into its most definitive form to date. This automobile is as extreme and as uncompromising as only a Lamborghini can be,” says Stephan Winkelmann, president and CEO of Automobili Lamborghini. “The new Lamborghini Aventador J is the most radical open supersports car of Lamborghini’s history. Its name comes from our tradition and combines an unconventional design with technology innovation. Nowadays we are confronted with several regulations that we face in the spirit of challenge. The Aventador J is the proof that, despite the rules, Lamborghini will always make people dream, even in the future.”

The technical basis for the Aventador J is the Aventador LP 700-4, Lamborghini’s new twelve-cylinder model. Presented in 2011, the Aventador LP 700-4’s technology package is unique – its structure is based on a monocoque made from carbon fiber composites that combine systematic lightweight design with optimum stiffness and safety.

In this open version, the monocoque has a largely new design, including the two safety bars behind the seats. The absence of a roof, of the large windshield, of the air conditioning system and of the navigation system obviously takes it to an even lower weight. With a dry weight of 1,575 kg/3,472 lb, the series production Aventador LP 700-4 is already extremely light for its performance class thanks to its carbon fiber construction.

Unlike traditional seats, in the Aventador J seats are made of Forged COMPOSITE, with inserts of flexible carbon fiber fabrics: a result of an innovative Lamborghini patent. This carbon fiber fabric, called Carbonskin, is made of woven carbon fibers soaked with a special epoxy resin that stabilizes the fiber structure and keeps the material soft. Like a hi-tech fabric, the carbon fiber mats fit perfectly to every shape. In the Aventador J, the complete cockpit and parts of the seats are clad in this material. Lamborghini says it’s conceivable that there will be other potential applications for this material.

Other composite features include:

  • The front of the Aventador J is somewhat narrower than that of the Aventador. The front end is dominated by a carbon fiber air scoop, with central fixing braces and upward tilting winglets on the outer edges. Viewed from the side, the front end of the Aventador J looks like a Formula 1 racing car.
  • The wheels were also developed specifically for this car, with 20-inch rims at the front and 21-inch rims at the rear. The five-spoke aluminum wheels have a central lock system and an additional carbon fiber insert that functions like a small fan for optimum brake ventilation.
  • In comparison with the Aventador LP 700-4, the Aventador J has special front and rear bumpers. Both bumpers have been supplemented with carbon fiber fins that act as flow deviators. Their purpose is to achieve a significant increase in the vehicle’s downforce at both the front and the rear.
  • The engine cover consists of a carbon fiber framework, with two large openings that lay bare both cylinder banks of the V-12 power unit.