This Huracán doesn’t seem particularly bothered about being labelled a ‘baby Lambo’. Hardly surprising, as it’s boxing clever with a couple of turbos and a thousand horses to play with…
The notion of a ‘baby Lambo’ has always been a bit of a misnomer. Look at the Gallardo; the archetypal bull calf, it’s really only an infant in the eyes of those who associate pint-sized humans with Chucky, Ivy the Terrible and the little ’un from The Incredibles. It’s the car that really pushed Lamborghini into the volume-selling mainstream; production ran from 2003-2013 and they shifted over 14,000 units – stellar numbers for a company that always made cars which were deliberately obstinate, and had to make their peace with the fact that they probably wouldn’t be unit-shifters. The Gallardo paid a lot of bills. It helped greatly that it had an awesome 5.0-litre V10 producing a nice round 500bhp; it would run 0-62mph in 4.2-seconds straight out of the box and go on to 196mph. The 2014 replacement, the Huracán, continued the V10 theme, altering those headline numbers to 2.5-seconds and 212mph respectively. So no, the Huracán isn’t a brawny V12-toting Aventador, but it’s still pretty bloody terrifying. Besides, no-one in history has ever suggested that a V10 engine is
…and if you think the stock Huracán’s scary, wait till you see what Sheepey Built have done with it. The car you see here may look relatively unmodified aside from a set of fancy wheels, but trust us: this thing has enough power to make far-off suns collapse. Look around the back with the bumper removed and the source of this automotive terrorism is plain to see – there’s a couple of sodding great turbos in there. Which is frankly the sort of deranged lunacy we want to get on board with.
The impetus for this gloriously demented project was the SEMA show, which you’ll no doubt be familiar with: the annual automotive aftermarket expo in Las Vegas is ostensibly a trade show, but the world’s media is always watching with a keen eye, and all the major players in the scene are there flashing their wares: indeed, it’s become a bit of an arms race among tuners. Presenting an eye-catching SEMA build is a tricky thing, as the level of quality at the colossal event is so mightily high, you really have to go above and beyond to stand out. Projects that would blow the doors off lesser shows sit unnoticed in shadowy corners in Vegas. To play with the big kids, you’ve got to go all-in.
This is why SoCal’s legendary Sheepey Built have been busying themselves doing unseemly things to supercars. Their Ferrari 458 certainly turned heads, with its proprietary twin-turbo setup and 700bhp mayhem. But that build, astounding though it is, pales in comparison to what we have here: a 1,000bhp+ Lamborghini Huracán. The kind of baby that’ll gleefully rip your heart right out.
This sort of caper creates an interesting conceptual tension for company founder Alex Soto, still keenly aware that Sheepey Built’s roots were founded in tearing apart Honda Civics with the aim of turning them into badass little street-racers. The principle remains the same: take a car, remove some bits, upgrade some other bits, make it all faster and cooler. But the numbers are much bigger. Lamborghinis are quite expensive.
Still, you’ve got to roll the dice sometimes, haven’t you? So Soto and his team got themselves a boxfresh Huracán LP610-4 and set about applying their ovine formula to a slightly intimidating but thoroughly exciting base. You’ve got to admire their restraint, too; clearly enraptured by the visual drama of the Lambo, they haven’t seen fit to radically alter its aesthetics. Aside from a subtle RSC Tuning carbon fibre front lip, sideskirt extensions and rear lip spoiler, it’s all as Sant’Agata intended… aside from the rear end, where things get rather less subtle. No, they haven’t forgotten to bolt the bumper back on, that’s been left on the workshop floor on purpose – because with beautiful and devastatingly functional engineering like this, why wouldn’t you leave it on show for all to admire?
What you’re seeing there is Sheepey’s own custom twin-turbo setup, a marvel of form and function which employs a pair of Xona Rotor billet turbos to devastating effect. Twins are very much the theme of the arrangement in fact, with the package also sporting twin Turbosmart 45mm Hyper-Gate45 wastegates, twin Turbosmart 50mm Race Port blow-off valves, twin CSF Ultimate Boost air-to-water intercoolers and, mounted behind the front bumper, twin CSF custom heat exchangers. As opposed to the usual air-to-air system you’d find in a traditional front-mount intercooler, these CSF air-to-water units use a water reservoir for cooling, and the filler cap at the top can be used to pack it with ice water if required. Liquid-to-air coolers are technically more efficient in their operation, and the custom CSF heat exchangers deftly combat heat-soak to make everything as efficient as it can possibly be. The net result of all this is a proven 844whp on regular pump fuel. Run the motor on high-octane race fuel and you’re staring down the barrel of 1,000whp+. What was that about a baby Lambo, again…?
Don’t go thinking that this engineering project has all been about chasing numbers in order to impress showgoers at SEMA, however. The aim of this twin-turbo development right from the start was to provide eye-watering performance without compromising usability. Lamborghini went to huge lengths to create a supercar that had unprecedented performance and yet was happy and able to trundle to the supermarket or sit in an M25 gridlock without self-immolating, and Soto was keen to retain the results of all that R&D. What this represents, then, is an accentuation of what the Huracán already is. A car with Volkswagen-like reliability, that also happens to be fast enough to peel the enamel from your teeth.
Naturally the stock engine management system might get a bit confused to suddenly find itself having to converse with a couple of turbos, so the Sheepey team have opted for a smart ECU from Syvecs, which deftly corrals all those binary digits and offers some nifty features like advanced launch control and traction control. Which is handy, as a thousand horses at the wheels means that all four are eager to light up, even with the enormous rubber footprint of those 335-section Pirellis. Oh, and what wheels they are… a fabulous staggered setup of 20-inch Rotiform SFO forged three-piece splits – 10-inch wide at the front, and a meatily pleasing 12.5-inch out back. With the bumper removed you can see so much tyre exposed at the rear, and the body hunkers beautifully over the massive rolling stock thanks to Novitec coilovers. Even with the inherently low-slung stance of a Huracán, you can see that these KW-built struts have their spring seats wound way down, and it really imbues the Lambo with a sense of menace.
So, 1,000whp+ and the sort of measured aggression that gives unsuspecting bystanders nosebleeds from several miles away? Not exactly sheepish, is it? And the Sheepey team are keen to point out that they’re already in the process of strengthening the drivetrain to enable 1,500whp capability, which should be enough to slightly shift the planet off its very axis. Baby Lambo? Yeah, if you like, but the meaning of that term’s exponentially changed. Nobody puts this baby in a corner.
TECH SPEC: LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN
RSC Tuning carbon fibre front lip, sideskirt extensions and rear lip spoiler
5.2-litre V10, twin Xona Rotor XR 96-67 billet turbos, TiAL V-band inlet/outlet housings, twin Turbosmart 45mm Hyper-Gate45 wastegates, twin Turbosmart 50mm Race Port blow-off valves, twin CSF Ultimate Boost air-to-water intercoolers, twin CSF custom heat exchangers (mounted behind front bumper), Syvecs management, 7-speed twin-clutch transmission
Power: 844whp (pump fuel), 1,000whp+ (race fuel)
10x20in (front) and 12.5x20in (rear) Rotiform SFO forged 3-piece wheels, 255/30 (f) and 335/25 (r) Pirelli P-Zero tyres, Novitec (by KW) coilovers, carbon-ceramic brakes (6-pot / 380mm front, 4-pot / 356mm rear)
Words Daniel Bevis Photography Larry Chen