It's been a few months since Lamborghini released its face-lifted Gallardo supercar, so we figured it was only a matter of time before we'd see a racing version. Sure enough, Lamborghini announced yesterday that it will develop a new car called the GT3 FL2 and deliver it to race teams in just two months' time.
The car is the product of a deal between Lamborghini and German racing house Reiter Engineering; while Reiter Engineering usually takes stock Gallardos and develops racing versions of them in-house, this is the first time that the two companies have pooled resources and worked directly with each other.
The cooperation shows: the GT3 FL2 has new heavy-duty brakes nicknamed "24-hour brakes" in a nod to endurance racing, and all manner of changes to the body kit to improve aerodynamics and reduce weight. Included in that aerodynamic kit is a rear diffuser that borrows heavily from the stock unit fitted to the Gallardo Super Trofeo road car (which was really just a road-going version of the Gallardo Super Trofeo race car), as well as a new front splitter. Lamborghini claims that the GT3 FL2 is 55 pounds lighter than the previous-generation Gallardo GT3 racer. The cost for all of this Italian performance: $430,112.
That's a lot of money, of course, but it does finally buy you access to Lamborghini's engineering and development staff. Lamborghini says it's creating a division of the company called the Squadra Corse (literally: "racing team") that will back up Lamborghini's efforts in GT3 racing, as well as the continuation of its single-marque Blancpain Super Trofeo series. It'll also include some fun for Gallardo owners in the form of "Esperienza" (experience) driving events and Lamborghini Academies to help owners harness the performance of their cars.
As for the races, the Gallardo GT3 FL2 will reach some European and Asian teams in March, at which point it'll compete in the Blancpain Eudrance Series, Asia Le Mans Series, and the Italian GT3 Championship. It's unclear exactly where this will happen, but Lamborghini says it's ready for a 2014 GT3 expansion into the American market.
Speaking of $400,000 Lamborghinis and American markets, the company decided to celebrate the release of its new Aventador roadster (starting price: about $381,000) with a nice display of the Aventador's ruthless performance -- but instead of shipping some journalists to a track, it went one (or two) steps further. The company made a deal with the Federal Aviation Administration to use one of the runways at Miami-Dade Airport (in between flights taking off and landing) to allow a few drivers to drop the hammer in the 217-mph convertibles. According to Lamborghini, at least one Aventador Roadster was clocked at 210 mph, something like 50 mph faster than a jet at take-off speed.