Lamborghini celebrates 50 years in 2013. Ever since Ferruccio Lamborghini, an Italian tractor maker by trade, debuted his first car, the company has been about exclusivity and power. It’s doubtful if even Ferruccio could have imagined the new Aventador Roadster, a topless iteration of Lambo’s flagship. The numbers astound: a 6.5-liter V12, seven-speed paddle shifter, 700 horsepower, top speed of 217 mph. The styling is a shock of exclamation points joined at sharp angles, and the company engineered color tones that change according to how the sun hits the car. But it’s the handling that amazes most, with cornering that must be experienced to be believed. Efficiency isn’t the V12’s strong point (about 18 mpg highway), but the car has a cylinder-deactivation system (it can run on half its engine when you’re trotting through town). Fewer than 150 of these will reach America in 2013, with a $445,300 tag. Perchance to dream.
Stats: 6.5-liter V12; 700 horsepower; 597 ft.-lbs of torque; Zero to 60 in 2.9 seconds; $445,300.
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