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Lamborghini Huracan Evo review: a 200mph supercar provides a lesson in the art of going slowly

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Lamborghini Huracan Evo - Lamborghini Avventura 2019 in northern Norway
The £200,000 Huracan Evo in the spectacular Lofoten Islands

There is a certain unease that something is not quite right. You open the curtains of the hotel room for the umpteenth time and your brain singularly fails to process the information being relayed by your tired eyes. You’ve been travelling all day to inside the Arctic Circle and now you can’t sleep. Because it’s still daylight. At midnight.

Not a crepuscular dullness, but proper, middle-of-an-English-summer’s-afternoon daylight. It’s more than disconcerting, it’s verging on disturbing. Another look outside. Watch and mobile phone, not to mention internal clock, beg to differ. 

Equally disconcerting is the street below. For there, in the northern Norwegian fishing town of Harstad, is a brand-new Lamborghini Huracan Evo. Double take. Correction, there are seven examples of the Italian company’s entry-level supercar, all long, lean, low and dart-like.

Seeing a Lamborghini this far north is equally unlikely as permanent daylight, yet it’s happening. Electric cars proliferate in Norway, thanks to a raft of perks, although to the north of the country inside the Arctic Circle you’re more likely to see a conventional petrol or diesel Hyundai than an electric car due to the distances involved and consequent lack of charging points.

A convoy of crackling Lamborghinis is a rare sight anywhere, unheard of in northern Norway

Far from the eco-warrior’s choice, the Lamborghini has a 10-cylinder petrol engine displacing just over 5.0 litres. It develops 631bhp, or about six times more power than the average family car, while capable of accelerating from 0-62mph in less than three seconds - and, given a sufficiently long stretch of tarmac, will reach in excess of 200mph. 

It only seats two and there’s precious little luggage space. The price for this highly conspicuous consumption is about £200,000 - while you’ll be lucky to better 20mpg.

So why does it exist? Because it’s Lamborghini, purveyor of generally bonkers cars with whopping V8 twin-turbo, V10 and V12 engines. All car companies have their passionate and highly motivated individuals, but Lamborghini’s have a certain joie de vivre (or however that translates into Italian) that makes any experience with the company a genuine pleasure. It’s certainly refreshing in these days of corporate blandness - and I have long been of the opinion that if you’re going to buy a mad car, you might as well get the maddest.

Styling revisions front and rear not only improve the looks, they also benefit the aerodynamics 

Thanks to a facelift earlier this year, the Huracan (now renamed Huracan Evo) looks even more fantastic. If there’s one thing that’s certain, it’s that nothing else looks like a Lamborghini.

A new front provides improved aerodynamics as well as a sharper appearance, with larger air intakes at the side to better cool the uprated V10 engine (the previous one developed “only” 601bhp). 

A new, lightweight exhaust system is claimed to make it sound even better, too. Its twin outlets emerge high in a restyled rear end which looks a lot better resolved than the old car’s, while unseen underneath the underbody has also been honed for aerodynamic efficiency.

I don’t expect your heart to bleed, but we had two days aboard the revised Huracan, in which to appreciate the car and the splendours of northern Norway.

The interior still features lovely leather and suede-effect Alcantara, although there's a heightened perception of build quality

Setting off from Harstad, we headed for the remote - yet stunningly beautiful - Lofoten Islands, jutting into the Atlantic to the west of Narvik. 

The convoy of Lamborghinis fires with a bark and the impatient-sounding exhaust notes reverberate from the buildings. Ensconced in the figure-hugging seats, swathed in the finest leathers, it’s hard to imagine a more perfect setting - until you realise that the speed limit is a maximum of 80kph (a whisker under 50mph, or a quarter of this car’s theoretical top speed).

The interior has been revised too, with, finally, a 8.4-inch touchscreen on the centre of the facia, featuring multi-finger gesture control (no, that’s not a description of what you do when stuck behind a gastropodic convoy of camper-vans en route to Lofoten). What really impresses is the apparent improvement in quality - Lamborghinis have long had luxurious hides with exquisite stitching and beautiful, suede-effect Alcantara trim, to which has been added a feeling of solidity that was perhaps missing from previous products.

The revised rear is better resolved. The exhausts now exit higher up, either side of the number plate

For an ultra-stiff, carbon-fibre and aluminium supercar, the ride feels remarkably compliant, although part of the credit for this must go to the roads which, despite the region’s severe winters put the UK’s crumbling blacktop to shame.

Perhaps more surprising is how easy the Huracan Evo is to drive. With Strada (street), Sport and Corsa (race) settings selected via a switch on the steering wheel, each progressively sharpens the engine’s responses and stiffens the magnetic suspension. While Corsa is understandably bonkers, the Strada mode is almost benign and leads you to believe that, yes, you could drive this car every day (lottery win permitting).

The coastal scenery is so spectacular that the speed limit pales into insignificance. Picture majestic mountains tumbling into jagged fjords, lakes that resemble mirrors and even beaches. They are so empty, clean and inviting, although a sea temperature of 10degrees C, even at the height of summer, precludes a dip.

Some of the beaches are as breathtaking as the scenery, although even at the height of summer swimming is for the hardiest souls only 

Our lunch stop was at Henningsvaer. As you might imagine, fish is pretty big around here, particularly the deliciously filling cod. Everywhere you look around these fishing towns are huge wooden racks used to air-dry the catch before it’s preserved for the winter.

Onward, westward bound, the cars’ exhausts reverberating off rock faces. Even better is the childish habit of selecting the rabid Corsa driving mode then dropping several gears upon entering one of the many tunnels and revelling in the crackling and banging of the exhaust system on the over-run.

That night’s accommodation was at the charming Nusfjord Arctic Resort, which is a tiny fishing village that has been restored as a sort of open-air hotel, with guests staying in repurposed original buildings.

At the Nusfjord Atlantic Resort. The harbour's traditional timber-legged buildings have been restored as hotel accommodation

We were lucky enough to have enjoyed some of the finest weather the region has seen in years, but it makes you think about the tough existence during less sublime climes.

The return trip to Harstad was punctuated by a stop for lunch at Svolvær - guess what, another fishing town. Wisely, excursions aboard a surprisingly rapid rigid inflatable boat (RIB) to see the fjords at close hand and watch young sea eagles feeding from the rich coastal waters had been scheduled ahead of the splendid marine-based buffet lunch.

After driving back to Harstad and reluctantly switching off the Huracans for the last time, it was time for dinner at Røkenes Gård, a family-run farm turned restaurant. Of course, I had to have the fish although, for a change, reindeer was also on the menu.

Spectacular though the scenery had been thus far, nothing had prepared me for a midnight excursion to a mountain top to experience the midnight sun. It was more than worth the climb, the unsetting sun creating a vivid pink and purple hue behind the clouds as, nearing half past midnight, the sun peeked above the mountain tops to herald another day.

Apart from the obvious permanent daylight, time seems to take on a different meaning in this region. It’s also a fine place to watch the Northern Lights too, apparently.

Even with a Lamborghini, you won’t get anywhere particularly quickly. You’ll be guaranteed a warm welcome, but to paraphrase TS Eliot the journey matters more than the arrival.

A young sea eagle fishing in the fertile coastal waters

THE FACTS

Lamborghini Huracan Evo

TESTED 5,204cc V10 petrol, seven-speed dual-clutch semi-automatic gearbox, four-wheel drive

PRICE/ON SALE from £198,307/now

POWER/TORQUE 631bhp @ 8,000rpm, 443lb ft @ 6,500rpm

TOP SPEED 202mph

ACCELERATION 0-62mph in 2.9 sec

FUEL ECONOMY 20.6mpg (EU Combined)

CO2 EMISSIONS 332g/km

VED £2,135 first year, £465 next five years, then £145

VERDICT This mid-life update represents a confident Lamborghini at the top of its game. The Huracan Evo not only looks much better but is also easier to drive at all speeds than its predecessors, yet it can also be as primal as you wish towards the extremes of its potential. Of course it’s not for everyone, with a whopping petrol engine, impractical layout and high cost, but we’ll miss cars such as these when they’re gone.

TELEGRAPH RATING Four stars out of five

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