Off-roading in a Lamborghini Huracán isn’t anything new to us. We’ve mowed the lawn at triple-digit speeds through Virginia International Raceway’s daunting uphill esses. On another occasion, we ended up behind the guardrail and in the woods of VIR’s Patriot Course. Don’t ask. Those excursions occurred involuntarily. The thought of willingly exiting the tarmac and throwing a Huracán into the dirt is insane. But nothing about the dual-purpose Lamborghini Huracán Sterrato is rational.
What Makes the Huracán Sterrato Special
Just look at the thing’s bulging fenders, the rally-inspired light pods grafted onto its angular nose, the roof-mounted snorkel and optional luggage rack, and the oddest-looking tires to be fitted to a Huracán. It’s clear this is not a typical supercar. The Sterrato is part Bruce Wayne, but mostly Max Rockatansky. A little touch of class but all badass, this is the first Lamborghini since the LM002 to wear dirt well.
The Sterrato isn’t a byproduct of Porsche transforming the 911 into an off-road buggy with the Dakar. Lamborghini’s concept dates back to 2017, when the engineering team, hot off the heels of working on the Urus, realized there was more left in the LP610-4 all-wheel-drive platform. Why not fit it with longer electronically controlled dampers and softer springs to provide 1.7 inches more ground clearance than the Evo and softer anti-roll bars to enable more articulation? If you build it, they will come.
And they came in droves. The Sterrato became instantly popular before anyone had driven one. The number that Lamborghini would produce increased again and again, finally reaching 1499, all quickly spoken for despite a $278,972 sticker. It was the end of the Huracán’s journey.
As in all Huracáns that came before it, the heart and soul of the Sterrato remains the enthralling 5.2-liter V-10, which has a furious soundtrack as 10 pistons pump and 40 titanium valves suck and blow air. In the Sterrato, the V-10 generates 602 horsepower, down 29 horses from the same engine in the previous STO and Tecnica variants. Until now, Huracáns have drawn air into the intakes from openings ahead of the rear wheels. To no surprise, when you’re kicking up dust and dirt, low air intakes are a terrible idea. Lamborghini’s fix is the rooftop snorkel, previously used on the STO to move air through the engine bay and here serving as the Sterrato’s windpipe. Its flow path is more restrictive, resulting in the reduction of horsepower.
Driving the Huracán Sterrato
Sure, the Sterrato has enhanced approach, breakover, and departure angles, but none of that matters much at Chuckwalla Valley Raceway. The off-road wedge obliterates the front straight. Stand on the firm, if a bit sensitive, brake pedal that modulates the standard carbon-ceramic brakes, and the Sterrato, fitted with Bridgestone all-terrain tires (more on those later), twerks its way into Turn 1. The tires beg for mercy under load exiting Turn 3, and Sport mode allows a copious amount of sideways playfulness. On this day, we’ll ignore turning down into Turn 4 and instead flip the steering-wheel toggle to Rally mode and drive off into the sun-baked desert.
Willingly plowing the Sterrato into the sand feels unnatural, but with a left-right twist of the fuzzy steering wheel, the quick, fixed-ratio steering rack is an all-star for setting up a Scandinavian flick. For this model, Lamborghini passed on rear-axle steering as it muddied the vehicle dynamics when paired with the all-terrain tires. Even without it, the brake-based torque vectoring pivots the machine, the earth succumbs, dirt encompasses the six-figure rally car, and with a pull of the big column-mounted shift paddles, the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic snaps off a gear change, the Haldex all-wheel-drive system shuffles torque between axles, and the Sterrato exits, leaving a dust plume reminiscent of the Road Runner.
Never had the thought of piloting a Huracán over lumpy terrain in third gear on an 8500-rpm redline occurred to us, but the softer dampers and spring rates, paired with longer and squishier internal bump stops, keep the uprights from ejecting from the chassis like Joe Theismann’s bones did his leg. Find the right—or maybe the wrong—path through the desert and you’ll use all 6.4 inches of ground clearance. Dirt will fly over the hood. This isn’t the stuff trophy trucks are made of, but for a pavement pounder, it’s impressive and hilariously fun.
None of this would be possible without the right tires. For that, Lamborghini tasked Bridgestone to develop the Dueler All-Terrain AT002, an all-terrain tire rated at 168 mph and available only in a Sterrato fitment. The sidewall construction mimics that of a Bridgestone Potenza Sport summer tire, so it’s stiff. Aside from a tread pattern meant to evacuate rocks and mud, the Dueler features interlocking snipes and tie-bars to lock the tread blocks together to provide more stability under load. And it’s a run-flat, so in the event of a puncture, the Sterrato can carry on for 50 miles at 50 mph. And while some might be tempted to mount two spares on the roof rack, it’s only rated for 88 pounds. Bridgestone will also offer a one-off winter tire for the Sterrato. Oh, the possibilities.
It’s Not Just for Off-Road
The Sterrato’s off-road capabilities aside, Lamborghini has created quite possibly the best roadgoing Huracán to date. Its softness makes for an enjoyable ride on the interstate, and with little roar from the all-terrain tires, this is the Huracán you’d want to drive across the country. Attack mountain switchbacks and there’s more pitch and roll than any Huracán before it, and the steering is so quick and light that midcorner corrections frequently occur until you train your hands to slow down. But none of this dulls the experience. Lean on it nice and hard, and the Bridgestones deliver what will likely be the greatest amount of grip we’ve measured from all-terrain rubber. And those fender flares aren’t just for looks. The front and rear tracks have been widened by 1.2 and 1.3 inches, respectively, giving the Sterrato a touch more sure-footedness.
Other than a digital inclinometer, a pitch-and-roll display, and GPS coordinates in the central display, the Sterrato’s interior is much the same as any other Huracán’s. Perhaps one of the coolest features is its ability to sync an Apple Watch and record your heartbeat. And your heart may skip a beat driving the Sterrato. Even more so than all the Huracán variants that preceded it, this Lamborghini is one wild ride.
2024 Lamborghini Huracán Sterrato
Vehicle Type: mid-engine, all-wheel-drive, 2-passenger, 2-door coupe
DOHC 40-valve V-10, aluminum block and heads, port and direct fuel injection
Displacement: 318 in3, 5204 cm3
Power: 602 hp @ 8000 rpm
Torque: 413 lb-ft @ 6500 rpm
7-speed dual-clutch automatic
Wheelbase: 103.5 in
Length: 178.1 in
Width: 77.0 in
Height: 49.1 in
Curb Weight (C/D est): 3650 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST)
60 mph: 3.0 sec
100 mph: 6.0 sec
1/4-Mile: 10.9 sec
Top Speed: 162 mph
EPA FUEL ECONOMY (C/D EST)
Combined/City/Highway: 14/12/17 mpg
Senior Testing Editor
David Beard studies and reviews automotive related things and pushes fossil-fuel and electric-powered stuff to their limits. His passion for the Ford Pinto began at his conception, which took place in a Pinto.