2021 Lamborghini Urus Review
What's the issue with something like an Aventador or Huracan? Only one person can come along for a joyride, obviously. But there is a solution: Lamborghini's Urus, which is the brand's new-ish SUV. Just don't let a lifted ride height, all-wheel drive and seating for five confuse things: The 2021 Urus is a Lamborghini first and foremost.
How's that? Well, for starters there's a 641-horsepower turbocharged V8 behind the Urus' aggressive-looking grille. Combine that with surprisingly sharp handling and a characterful interior design and you've got a thrilling driving experience that the entire family can share. But just as impressive is the Urus' ability to provide a calm, relaxed experience during the commute. Credit this seemingly contradictory driving experience to the underlying platform and electronics, which are shared with similarly luxurious Audi, Porsche and Bentley models.
But while those super SUVs with quarter-million-dollar price tags seek to be the most refined and dignified on the road, the Urus takes a different approach. This is style and presence in an SUV as only Lamborghini can do it.
It's easy to be skeptical of the Urus, with its overstated design and mechanical relation to the Audi Q8, Bentley Bentayga and Porsche Cayenne. But this super SUV backs up its flamboyance with stunning performance and luxury. It merges an unabashedly Lamborghini driving experience — including thumbs up from onlookers — with advanced, problem-free technology that you don't usually get with a small-volume automaker. Brash and fast, or quiet and refined, at the driver's whim, the Urus is the ultimate performance SUV.
How does the Urus drive?
You'd expect staggeringly quick acceleration and riotous, high-limit handling from a Lamborghini, and the Urus does not disappoint. At our test track it posted numbers that fall in line with some of the quickest vehicles we've ever tested. We measured a 3.3-second sprint to 60 mph, a 11.4-second quarter-mile pass and 1.03 lateral g average on our skidpad.
Also impressive is that the Urus can generate these extreme performance figures without hurting its day-to-day drivability. The steering is accurate and properly weighted, and the engine doles out the power right when you want it. The sole annoyance we noticed during our evaluation was the noisy and clunky antilock braking during our 60-0 mph test. We'd expect more refinement in a vehicle like this.
How comfortable is the Urus?
It's remarkable that the Urus makes no perceptible compromises to comfort. The front seats are exemplary in their pampering with heating, ventilation and massage functions. The optional rear captain's chairs ensure adequate lateral support for the entire family too. Climate functions are likewise quiet and powerful.
The cabin is quiet in the standard drive modes. But select the Sport or Corsa mode, and the sound of the engine and exhaust makes a welcome appearance. Aside from the occasional thunk over bumpy surfaces (likely exacerbated by the 22-inch wheels on our test car), the ride is flat and composed in the standard drive mode.
How’s the interior?
Getting in is easy thanks to the relatively generous door openings and friendly ride height in this streamlined SUV. Wheel and seat adjustment ranges should suit occupants of most sizes, and those on the larger side of the spectrum will find no shortage of interior space. Large mirrors and generous windows make exterior visibility mostly a nonissue.
The central entertainment screen is split in two — the upper screen controls the majority of features (navigation and audio, for example) and the bottom is for the climate controls. The touch-sensitive parts of the displays are generally large, making them easier to adjust when driving. Similarly, the large and chunky reverse and drive mode levers are satisfying.
How’s the tech?
Each of the Urus' three primary displays present clear and easy-to-read graphics. The voice controls respond to natural language and support your phone when using Android Auto or Apple CarPlay. Connectivity includes four USB ports total (although no USB-C), wireless charging and four 12-volt outlets. The clarity and presence from the optional 21-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo make it a worthy upgrade.
As for driver's aids, the proximity sensors proved a touch sensitive at first, but you can adjust their intensity. Extensive exterior cameras help reduce the chance of curbing a wheel or a bumper, and the adaptive cruise control reacts smoothly and effectively.
How’s the storage?
It's adequate for an SUV of this size and sporty intent. In a nice touch, you can raise and lower the rear suspension from the cargo area, but the optional second-row captain's chairs don't fold down and consequently limit cargo-area flexibility. We fit a reverse-facing car seat without issue and minimal impact to front seat comfort.
The front and rear seating areas each offer two cupholders, and the front and rear door pockets can easily hold large water bottles. While front occupants don't have a large storage area under the armrest, there's a pocket behind the center console that can accommodate a small handbag.
How economical is the Urus?
The Urus get an EPA-estimated 14 mpg combined (12 city/17 highway). While that seems low, it's pretty typical for SUVs that offer 600 to 700 horsepower.
Is the Urus a good value?
Most in this small group of SUVs that cost a quarter of a million prioritize luxury, and the Urus is currently the only one that also delivers a supercar-like experience. Like the others, the Urus offers an exceptional array of exterior and interior customization choices, and the resulting interior materials, from leather to fabrics, are gorgeous. (What's also noteworthy is that its closest competitor in terms of price, the Bentley Bentayga, uses the same underlying structure and electronics as the Urus.)
The bumper-to-bumper warranty of three years/unlimited miles is somewhat lacking compared to competitors. Maintenance is included during that warranty period as well. A small interior trim piece did fall off the inner door handle on our test car.
You have certain expectations when you're buying or experiencing a Lamborghini, and the Urus handily delivers with bold styling and a range of bright color options. That character remains consistent throughout the interior too (as long as you ignore the Audi-sourced switchgear).
But the Urus' true success is a driving experience that is far more engaging and delightful than it needs to be. This is a shockingly good vehicle to drive quickly on a mountain road, and its unending thrust and barking exhaust provide endless entertainment for the driver and all occupants.
Which Urus does Edmunds recommend?
Like other Lamborghini models, the Urus comes in just one heavily customizable trim. After making the difficult aesthetic decisions — should I get 22- or 23-inch wheels, and which one of the four exhaust tip finishes should I choose? — you'll still have lots of hardware options to consider. From a practical standpoint, we'd get the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems package for its combination of exterior cameras and self-park functions. Gotta reduce those embarrassing meetings between your Urus' 23-inch wheels and curbs, you know?
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Lamborghini Urus models
The 2021 Lamborghini Urus comes in a single trim level, and buyers have a plethora of options to tailor their specific car. Regardless of those options, each Urus starts with a 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 (641 horsepower and 627 lb-ft of torque), an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. Other standard features include: