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Emissions: Lambo won't change DNA

2007-11-29 15:20
Frankfurt - Lamborghini, maker of some of the fastest and costliest cars on the road, is ready to cut back on air pollution - but do not expect it to compromise on the trademark screeching sound of its powerful engines.

At the Reuters Autos Summit last week, its chief executive vowed never to sacrifice what made a super sports car, well, a super sports car.

Besides the design of the car, the sound of the engine, the top speed and the sprint from zero to 100km/h were integral to Lamborghini's image, he said.

"You have to see what the DNA of the brand is all about," Stephan Winkelmann said. "It is all about emotion."

Carmakers are coming under pressure from European authorities to reduce the CO2 emissions from its vehicles. They face a planned deadline to cut them to 130 grams per kilometer by 2012.

Although makers of humbler, cheaper cars face the most pressure, Lamborghini will likely be expected to make a contribution, given how its cars emit more than 400 g/km of CO2.

Winkelmann said the power/weight ratio was the one area where Lamborghini could improve, trying out lighter materials for the body and chassis of its cars, for example.

"We have to look at what is suitable and what is best for a super car brand like Lamborghini," he said.

Apart from the car's startling noise as it races down the street, he did not think it posed much of a danger to the environment because its owners only drove on the weekends, he said.

"If we look at the real impact, it is close to zero," he said.

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