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Lamborghini's Centenario is a gorgeous celebration of an extreme legacy

Mixing tradition with innovation, the ultra exclusive Centenario has already sold out

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2016 would have been the year of the 100th birthday of Lamborghini founder Ferruccio Lamborghini, and the storied Italian carmaker is celebrating the occasion with an extremely limited edition of 40 Centenario hypercars. This one-off design is built around a carbon fiber monocoque and Lamborghini's most powerful engine to date. It can produce 770hp, which seems almost quaint by the epic standards of the 1,500hp Bugatti Chiron and Koenigsegg Regera, but it propels the Centenario from 0 to 100km/h in just 2.8 seconds. That's fast by anyone's standards.

For Lamborghini, the Centenario is a celebration of the legacy of its founder and the tradition of pushing performance boundaries. This car is priced at €1.75 million before taxes, but that number is of only academic importance. All 40 Lamborghini Centenarios — 20 coupés and 20 roadsters — have already been sold to an exclusive clientele close to Lamborghini. The company says it wants the Centenario to be driven, not just sit somewhere as a museum piece.

By Lamborghini's usual standards, the Centenario is almost restrained

Given Lamborghini's famously aggressive designs and spectacular one-offs like the Egoista, the Centenario feels almost restrained. The carbon fiber exterior gives it a demure look, with only a few tasteful accents of the company's signature yellow. There are no alien superstructures or weird angular shapes to disturb the eye. It's rather like a stripped-back Aventador, though Lamborghini will happily paint the Centenario in whatever color the customer desires and it also equips the car with an infotainment system powered by Apple's CarPlay.

The naturally aspirated V12 engine of the Centenario is complemented by a lightweight design, keeping its weight to just over 1.5 tons and giving it a power ratio of 1.97kg/hp. It is, as with any Lamborghini, an impressive feat of engineering and it probably sounds and drives like a dream too. We don't know. Hopefully a member of the ultra-exclusive clique that gets to own one will lend it to us for a test drive.

Lamborghini Centenario gallery