2007 Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder

Charlie Magee

Despite having all-wheel drive, the Gallardo Spyder will readily power oversteer. It lets its tail go much later than a Ferrari F430 or a Porsche 911 Turbo--and its slide angles are typically less dramatic--but nonetheless the ultimate arbiter of its fine handling balance is the throttle. When it does assume an attitude, however, you had better time and meter your inputs properly. But thanks to the extremely stiff aluminum body and the rigid unequal-length control arm suspension, the responses are very sharp.

The rack-and-pinion steering is now twenty percent quicker than before, which is especially obvious around the straight-ahead position, where the Gallardo Spyder is now about as forgiving as a live wire. Turn-in is positively electrifying, and yet there is a surprising lightness to the helm that refuses to disappear as you wind on lock. Like the proverbial go-kart, this car responds with rare accuracy. The only flaw is the ridiculous turning circle of 42.7 feet. Koni dampers take the vehicle speed, the driving style, the cornering force, and the surface quality into consideration. When in sport mode, however, the computer mixes too much cement into the hydraulic oil, so the Lambo will occasionally bottom out, and there is also some unwanted front-end pitch. The brakes, on the other hand, are strong and full of stamina.

The Gallardo's build quality is now truly impressive. The fabric roof of our test car never spoke a word, the leatherwork was assembled to the highest standard, fit and finish were spot-on, and the surfaces were every bit as classy as those of an Audi A8. There are less expensive sports cars on the market, and even more complete ones. But as far as blending ability and curb appeal is concerned, the Gallardo Spyder is very special.

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