Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 is first road car with carbon fiber roll cage

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12

The Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 is now the first road-going car with a carbon fiber roll cage, which passed the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile  (FIA) Hypercar safety standards.

"This extraordinary achievement is the result of Automobili Lamborghini’s 30 years of experience in the study and application of composite materials in the automotive field," the Italian marque said. 

The carbon fiber roll cage, which does away with another steel roll cage, is one of the racing tech that Lamborghini installed in the Essenza SCV12. The other racing-derived equipment is the "suspension installed directly on the load-bearing gearbox," as explained by Lamborghini head of motorsport Giorgio Sanna. 

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12

With a technical collaboration with the FIA, "we’ve started a process that will lead to an exponential improvement in safety for GT racing drivers in the future,” Sanna added. 

The testing required by the FIA for chassis homologation is "extremely rigorous," involving both static and dynamic tests. As a result, the Squadra Corse technicians modified the structure of the production chassis, Lamborghini said. 

The carbon fiber monocoque was reinforced in several points, having to withstand forces of over 12 tons during the FIA homologation tests without presenting significant deformations.

There are more than 20 static tests which, in addition to the chassis, involve the pedals, belts, and fuel tank. The dynamic crash tests, on the other hand, involve impacts at speeds of up to 14 meters/second. In this test, the chassis must not have external elements coming into contact with the driver, and the fuel tank must not leak.

Lamborghini added that in the absence of a steel roll cage, which also saved on  weight thanks to laminated foams inside the chassis, the chassis also provided a significant increase in cockpit space

In the Essenza SCV12, the driver sits on an OMP FIA 8862 homologated seat, mounted on carbon fiber cradles designed by Squadra Corse. The seat has been lowered compared to the road models.

Both the driver and passenger are protected by two side impact guards on the doors, which are made of composite material and replace the classic steel tubes found in racing cars.

Lamborghini Factory Driver Marco Mapelli had a go in the Essenza and commented: “Essenza SCV12 is not only a fast car that can deliver exhilarating experiences, but it’s also equipped with an incredibly comfortable and spacious cabin. This is a unique feature appreciated by all gentlemen drivers, for whom it is intended.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12

“Along with the aerodynamic load of over 1,200 kilograms at top speed,” Mapelli continued, “the torsional stiffness of the car contributes to ensuring extraordinary driving precision.

This makes it possible for the driver to tackle curves at speed without any appreciable correction of the steering angle. Essenza SCV12 is a very fast car thanks to the extraordinary thrust of the 830 hp engine, and it’s relatively easy to drive.”

The first units of Essenza SCV12 were delivered to customers in April 2021, and the dedicated program of track events will start at the end of June.

Photos from Lamborghini

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