ELLE, September, 2019 (link)
Calling all STEM, sustainability and art innovators under 30
“Lamborghini is probably the first [car manufacturer] to think about the female market in a completely different way.” These are the words uttered by Chief Marketing Officer Katia Bassi at the reveal of the brand’s first SUV, the Urus, almost two years ago. Of the Urus, the world’s first and fastest super sports utility vehicle (read: a supercar on stilts), Bassi confirms it was indeed designed with women in mind.
“Normally, when the automotive segment thinks about women, [it] thinks about details like the mirror or some details in pink, that, to be honest with you, is not really what we're looking for, right?” says Bassi, an empowerment enthusiast. “Of course, women also love driving super sports cars, because we want to enjoy it and it's our choice, but we also need a more versatile car…We like to say the super sports utility vehicle is a generous sports car… an experience.”
The Urus is one of those cars you need to drive or be driven in to know what it’s about. From the outside, it’s loud, fierce and supremely angular – a nod to the Lamborghini poster cars from the ‘80s to now - but it is also large and bulky, though it’s portly appearance defies its flex. On the road, it is everything it says it is. Most of all, it’s very, very quick. In a roar it can hit 0-100km/h in 3.6 seconds and 0-200km/h in 12.8 and has a top speed of 305km/h. Unlike its cousins, the Volkswagen Touareg, Porsche Cayenne, Audi Q8 and a Bentley Bentayga, with which it shares its platform, the Urus is shockingly athletic, a secret ingredient cooked-up in the futuristic and clinical-looking, specially-built factory in Sant Agata Bolognesea. This is no PR stunt for sales, the brand has ensured the Urus has earned the raging bull badge.
However, and here’s where that versatility comes in - unlike any other modern Lamborghini, the Urus can be taken anywhere – from the dunes to the school run. It has five seats (more than one passenger is unheard of in a modern Lamborghini), six drives modes (including ‘Corsa’ for the track, ‘Neve’ for snow and slippery surfaces, ‘Terra’ for off-road and ‘Sabbia’ for sand) and a decent trunk. All this comes in a bid to appeal to women, families and those whose lives can't be lived in a low-slung supercar. And, guess what? It’s working. The Urus has introduced more women to Lamborghini than any other car, raising global sales by around fifty per cent. It’s even earned pop-culture clout; both Kylie AND Kendall Jenner own one, as does Kayne West and Cardi B.
Granted, the “women buy more SUVs so we made an SUV” can often come off as token, however, the Italian supercar house insists its bid to tip the gender balance isn’t just showroom lip service. Lamborghini is putting its money where its mouth is by launching a new award aimed at female innovators under 30.
Launched as an extension of FAB, Lamborghini’s Female Advisory Board, an initiative involving an all-female network of around 180 influential women in business, culture, creativity and technology around the world, the prize will be presented in three categories: Technology, Sustainability and Art.
It will be awarded to three women who have impacted and made a contribution to the world around them, who also share Lamborghini’s philosophies and approach to ideas: innovation, transformation and a ‘commitment to creating a sustainable future while pushing the frontiers of technology and creative force of art.’ The brand’s most recent reveal, the game-changing V12 hybrid supercar, The Sián FKP 37, is the embodiment of this philosophy, not to mention a hint at why this Future FAB Award is so important to the brand.
“Lamborghini is an organisation that has been able to transform itself continuously, innovating and dictating new rules in its sphere of reference, from 1963 to today,” says, Bassi. “FAB continues along this path, involving women who are leaders in their sectors, whose experience of challenges, successes, and purchasing habits supports us in our market research and provides vital information on the trends of the luxury market and society.”
Of the award Bassi says, “with a view to Corporate Social Responsibility and to give continuity to our vocation as a future-oriented brand, this initiative offers young women under 30 the opportunity to present their projects, to be inspired by the experience of women’s leadership, and to be able to contribute along with us to innovation and progress.”
Entries for the Lamborghini Future FAB Award in technology, art or sustainability are open now, until October 14. Enter here: https://future.fab.lamborghini/