Lamborghini is known for its compelling car designs starting from the 350 GT in 1964 to Miura to Gallardo to Aventador or Sesto Elemento to the most recent plugin hybrid Terzo Millennio concept car. But all of Lamborghini models soak in that iconic and easily recognisable Lamborghini appeal. Even so, each Lambo carries its own distinct design. So, how does Lamborghini come up with its car designs and what challenges does the future hold for its designers considering the electric car concept is catching on. We got in a conversation with Mitja Borkert, Head of Design at Automobili Lamborghini to understand the processes at the manufacturer's Centro Stile (design centre).
How exactly do you come up with designs for new Lamborghini cars? Is there a family look theme that you follow or a theme that inspires the design process?
Every new Lamborghini has its own distinctive features, including its own design style. Of course, our Centro Stile always takes inspiration from the brand’s design DNA and from the iconic super sports cars from our heritage, combining that into a modern design language consistent with functional/aerodynamic purposes. Our motto is “Expect the unexpected” for every car we create.
Given that electric vehicles are going to be the future, how much will the design change at Lamborghini and what are the challenges you expect?
In 2017, Automobili Lamborghini in collaboration with two laboratories of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology marked the first steps of a possible future of Lamborghini electric super sports car and presented the concept car Lamborghini Terzo Millennio.
The concept physically imagines design and technology theories of tomorrow, while sustaining the visual intrigue, breathtaking performance and the visceral emotion found in every dimension of a Lamborghini. It is made for future super sports car enthusiasts.
With our Terzo Millennio concept car, Lamborghini looks to the future with a visionary approach, taking its own DNA’s values to the extreme. To plan our path, we will define the requirements of the third millennium in terms of energy storage and innovative materials to secure the most emotional and ultimate driving experience.
What is the level of customisation one can do with a Lamborghini?
With the Ad Personam programme, there is an infinity of possible combinations, from the colours to the materials: from the logo on the seat that may be hand stitched instead of branded to the initials stitched inside the vehicle’s interior, or even a custom colour, all meeting the company’s exacting standards of quality. Or the possibility to choose from various types of materials, from luxurious Lamborghini Vintage semi-aniline leathers embellished with other effects and developed together with leading Italian experts, or the innovative Forged Composite material in carbon fibre.
How does the mix of aerodynamics as well as design co-exist? Wouldn't there be clashes or difference in opinion between the designers and engineers?
The "Centro Stile" was built in 2004 to be an innovative studio for our talented designers, able to combine the brand's culture and soul with innovation and the constant quest for new looks.
This is why the Centro Stile Lamborghini is committed to taking the unrivalled tradition of Italian automotive design into the production processes of the future, without having to resort to contractors for the styling.
It is located next to the Technical Department for a reason: this way ideas are translated into reality in virtually no time while ensuring that design and technology are cohesive and well-aligned.
Is the interior designed by the same team that does the exterior? What is more challenging of the two - designing interior of a car or the exterior?
Yes, the design of each Lamborghini car, interior as well as exterior, is designed by our Centro Stile team of talented designers.
Each has its own special set of challenges – for instance, when designing the car interior, comfort, luxury and user-intuitiveness are key considerations, boiling right down to the smallest detail to ensure the best quality in driver and passenger experience.
When it comes to the exterior, each Lamborghini vehicle must be conceived to thrill not only the drivers but also the people around as they went past. This is a concept that has always been a keystone of the iconic car manufacturer, and over the years it has been developed hand in hand with the general evolution of style and technological progress.