You never know what you’ll find lapping the Nurburgring on any given day. Case in point: our spy photographer managed to catch a 2015 Lamborghini Cabrera prototype – a replacement for the Gallardo – lapping the Nordschleife.
Our photographer describes these images as the “best look yet” at the new “entry-level” Lamborghini model, but that doesn’t mean we’re looking at the final form. From a distance, it almost looks as if the Gallardo’s replacement looks a bit soft and doughy, but a closer look – especially around the front and side air intakes – reveals these black panels are merely camouflage placed over the Cabrera’s bodywork.
Judging by the LED headlamp assemblies and the shape of the front air inlets, expect the finished Lamborghini Cabrera to bear a close resemblance to its big brother, the Aventador. The Cabrera’s beltline is much more rakish than the Gallardo, and appears to be bisected by a large air intake, placed just aft of the doors, which wraps up and into the roofline. Whether that intake is real or merely elaborate camouflage remains to be seen, but it does appear the Lamborghini Cabrera gains a pair of small air intakes placed along the rocker sills, just forward of the rear wheels. Most details out back are obscured fairly well, but the cover over the rear window suggests the Cabrera will don a louvered rear backlight much like the one used on the Aventador.
Like the current Gallardo, the next-gen Cabrera is again believed to be developed in concert with the next-generation Audi R8, and share a new aluminum and carbon fiber spaceframe with the new R8. Early reports suggest the Lamborghini Cabrera will be slightly shorter and lighter than its Audi sibling, and perhaps even lighter than the present Gallardo, which tips the scales at 3109 pounds in LP 560-4 form.
Although Lamborghini has previously hinted that its pursuit of lighter vehicles could lead to downsized engines, that may not be the case with the Cabrera. The new Lamborghini Cabrera is believed to use an updated version of the Gallardo’s 5.2-liter V-10, tuned to deliver somewhere close to 600 hp. A six-speed manual transmission will likely be standard, while a new seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, shared with the next R8, will be optional. All-wheel drive is expected to be standard, but as was the case with the Gallardo, rear-wheel drive Cabrera variants may be offered on occasion.
As for the Cabrera name? Though it may conjure images of MLB sluggers here in North America, the word actually refers to a breed of bull that, like the Gallardo breed, helped give way to the famed Miura line of fighting bulls – which, in turn, lent its name to Lamborghini’s first mid-engine supercar back in 1966.
Expect further information to emerge soon, as the Lamborghini Cabrera is expected to debut early next year, before going on sale in late 2014.