For the first time since its debut in 2017, the Lamborghini Urus has two models in its range, and no, this doesn’t include the cosmetically enhanced Pearl Capsule and Graphite Capsule limited editions. The handling-focused Urus Performante was revealed just last month, and it has now been joined by the Urus S.
- New facelifted entry level Urus model
- Gets uprated 666hp V8 from the Performante
- Comfier adaptive air suspension as standard
Much like the Aventador, which took on the ‘S’ suffix for its mid-life update, Lamborghini’s super-SUV has done too, and as was the case then, the vehicle has been enhanced both cosmetically and mechanically. With the Urus S, however, there seems to have been a concerted shift towards greater luxury and customisation, helping draw a distinct line between it and its more driver-focused stablemate, the Urus Performante.
Lamborghini Urus S and Urus Performante: design similarities and differences
Both models represent the mid-life facelift for the hugely successful Lamborghini Urus super-SUV, although going by Lamborghini’s model-naming conventions, the Urus S will likely be positioned slightly lower as the starting model in the range. It gets subtle cosmetic updates like a new bonnet with cooling vents, a slightly more aggressive front bumper with more black elements, and a slightly re-profiled rear bumper too. Missing are the dual-tone bonnet and extended roof spoiler of the Performante, and its new set of Pelope 23-inch alloy wheels; the old Urus wheel designs from 21-23 inches return, with some new designs too.
The Lamborghini Urus S interior is exactly the same as before, but there is a greater luxury focus this time in the choice of materials, which has grown much wider and allows for far greater customisation. The launch car, for example, shows a more subdued chocolate brown all-leather interior with contrast stitching and dark trim inserts, unlike what is usually shown on a Lamborghini. This, the brand says, “underlines the high-performance credentials of the Urus S while delivering understated and timeless luxury”. The darker colours with bright contrasting elements and use of Alcantara now defaults to the sportier Urus Performante, but with the customisation Lamborghini is promising, it will likely be available on the S too.
Lamborghini Urus S and Urus Performante: mechanical differences and similarities
The Urus Performante wound up the output from the 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 from 650hp to 666hp (the torque remained at 850Nm) and this new engine spec has found its way under the bonnet of the Urus S. As before, power goes via an 8-speed torque converter automatic gearbox to all four wheels, and in the Urus S the 0-100kph time has been brought down from 3.6sec to 3.5sec. This continues to be the most powerful iteration of this VW Group V8 engine without electrical assistance.
A huge difference between the two models is the suspension set-up, as while the Urus Performante moved to a set of sporty, lowered, fixed coil springs for far more aggressive handling, the Urus S retains the adaptive air suspension from before. This should not only allow for greater ride height and the potential to lift the SUV for truly treacherous terrain, but also imbue it with a comfier ride all around. With the change to sports suspension, the Urus Performante also lost out on its off-road modes, getting a single ‘Rally’ mode instead. The Urus S, meanwhile, brings back all three off-road modes – Sabbia, Neve and Terra (Sand, Snow and Mud), in addition to Strada, Sport and Corsa (Street, Sport and Track).
Urus is Lambo’s highest selling model ever
It’s no surprise the Urus has grown to become Lamborghini’s highest selling model of all time in a span of less than five years. It joined the super-SUV boom at the right time, something arch rival Ferrari has only reluctantly decided to do, and for many, it was the exotic brand in a practical package (and certainly the wild styling) that made it attractive, perhaps more so than the outright performance.
Which is why splitting the range into a sporty Performante model for driving enthusiasts, and a more luxurious and customisable S variant in the vein of rival and fellow VW Group brand Bentley, makes even more sense. Moreover, this is not the last Urus variant we’ll see, as a hybrid version is on the way too, likely utilising a version of the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S e-hybrid’s 700hp, V8 PHEV powertrain.
Will the Urus S and Urus Performante launch in India? Undoubtedly. If anything, the scale of the SUV’s success in India has been even greater than it has globally. The brand delivered its 200th SUV in India in July this year, and the Urus now accounts for half of all Lambos ever sold in our market. It will likely come soon, too, as the brand has been launching its models here soon after their global debuts; in fact the original Urus itself came to India just a month after its global launch. Lambo said we could see the first deliveries of the Urus Performante before the end of this year, and chances are there might be a few Urus S deliveries squeezed in too.
Would you prefer the hardcore Urus Performante or comfier Urus S? Let us know down in the comments below.