While the Lamborghini nameplate has been no stranger to success in the GT racing world over the last decade, the Huracán GT3 is set to launch the exotic Italian manufacturer into all-new territory.
The first GT3 car to be fully engineered, developed and assembled internally by Lamborghini at its Sant’Agata Bolognese headquarters, the Huracán GT3 was born out of a desire to offer factory built and supported cars to customers worldwide.
According to Giorgio Sanna, Head of Lamborghini Motorsport, the car, which has already been under development for more than one year, ticks all of the important boxes for the success in the highly competitive GT3 platform.
“The target was to achieve the best compromise in the [four] main areas: power/engine, aerodynamic, chassis and weight as well,” Sanna told Sportscar365. “What’s good on the Huracán GT3 is these kind of things.”
The Huracán GT3 features an aluminum-carbon chassis, with a subframe that’s been modified both at the front and rear to accommodate a high-performance radiator and to also better position of the gearbox.
As a result, the car nearly achieves an equal weight distribution, with 58 percent of the weight in the rear.
The other area that’s seen significant enhancements has been the aerodynamics, which have been developed in collaboration with Dallara and is made up of nearly all composite materials.
The car, however, shares a significant amount of components from the road-going Huracán LP 610-4 as well, including the 5.2-liter, direct-injected V10 powerplant.
“It’s very close to the production,” Sanna said. “We’re happy because we have a very good engine with strong performance and very strong reliability from the road version car.”
While packing more than 600 horsepower in the road car, the Huracán GT3 had to be pegged back on the race track by approximately 100 horsepower due to the FIA’s Balance of Performance.
“Considering the actual rules in the FIA with the BoP, we don’t need to increase the power, we need to reduce the power,” Sanna said. “So we’ve worked more on the electronic point of view to have good reliability of the engine with more torque and less power.”
While the chassis, suspension and aero has been developed by Lamborghini directly, the Huracán GT3’s entire powertrain, including its engine, six-speed gearbox and electronics, originated from the new Audi R8 LMS.
It was made possible thanks to a collaboration between the two Volkswagen Group-owned manufacturers.
“At the beginning of the project it was the intention to have a synergy with Audi Sport customer racing,” Sanna said. “That makes sense in terms of business and the technical side.
“There’s a very good relationship and partnership between the two motorsports departments. That’s important because you can work faster and easier in getting the results.
“And looking at their results at the Nürburgring 24 [where the Audi won on its 24-hour debut], I think we have made the right choice.”
One might also wonder how much crossover there is between the Huracán GT3 and the Huracán LP 620-2 Super Trofeo, which is also all-new for 2015 and serves as the flagship model in its popular single-make series.
While utilizing the same base road car and production-based engine, Sanna said that’s essentially where the similarities stop.
“In the beginning there was this plan to have two different cars because we are talking about two different categories with two different missions,” he said.
“On the GT3 car, we have less power than the Super Trofeo because the target is to have a car with a perfect behavior. The GT3 car has a dedicated [race] chassis and suspension too.”
Like the Audi R8 LMS, the Huracán GT3 has gotten off to a promising start, having provisionally won in its race debut in the Blancpain Endurance Series round at Monza in April.
However, work on the car hasn’t stopped, as this year’s foray with the factory supported GRT Grasser Racing Team in the Blancpain Endurance Series will expand into customer efforts competing worldwide starting in 2016.
“We hope to be continue to be competitive and get experience to collect as much as data as possible for the customer teams,” Sanna said. “Starting from Paul Ricard, we’ll start to continue to compete in medium to long distance races. It’s a completely new experience.”
Sanna said they’ve already established a strong customer support package for the Huracán GT3, by utilizing many of the resources from its European, North American and Asian Super Trofeo championships.
As many as 35 cars could be competing around the globe by next year, which could make it one of the most popular new GT3 platforms in existence.
“We’re continuing to work because we want to be sure we have a competitive car everywhere,” Sanna said.
“The development is always ongoing because there’s fine tuning activities to do on the car. We’re testing also with different tire manufacturers in other series, like IMSA and other national series in the world.
“As you can imagine, the tires is one of the most different technical aspect from one series to another. So you need to continue to always work on this kind of fine tuning to make sure everything is OK.”