Hollis Johnson/Business Insider
- It’s a constant question: "Is the ultra-expensive car really worth it compared to a much cheaper set of wheels?"
- I set out to answer that question by comparing five VW Group vehicles: the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ and Lamborghini Urus; the Audi RS5 Sportback; and the VW Golf R and VW Beetle Final Edition.
- The upshot is that one can get great performance and premium quality at under $50,000. But if you want a howling Lamborghini V12 engine, it’s still gonna cost ya!
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Is a $610,000 car really an entire mortgage better than a $27,000 car?
That’s the question I set out to answer, after testing five vehicles a across a wide spectrum of prices. The quintet had something in common: they were all made by the VW Group which owns the VW, Audi, and Lamborghini brands.
I thought about comparing just sedans or SUVs, but the truth is that sometimes a luxury SUV might be based on a mass-market vehicle, so distinctions are harder to draw. In that case, you’re dealing with premium appointments, luxurious extras, and upmarket styling. Mechanically and performance-wise, however, the vehicles could be quite similar.
So I took a different approach, along the lines of "What are you getting for your money?" I also enjoyed all six of these vehicles, so I had a positive baseline to begin with.
Let’s see how it all went down!
We’ll start with the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ, a track-oriented version of the "Big Lambo," already a near-hypercar that at $610,000 is the second most expensive vehicle we’ve tested at BI, after the Rolls-Royce Phantom.
The Aventador arrived in 2011 and, like all Lambo sports cars, is named for a fighting bull. The car is a beast, and in a "Rosso Mimir" matte-red paint job, it looked ultra-aggressive. The base Aventador is about $517,000
What you’re paying for in a car like this boils down to three things. First and foremost, you’re getting a 6.5-liter V12 engine, making 770 horsepower and 720 pound-feet of torque, with a redline at 8,700 rpm.
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