The Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 has a lot going for it. It's aggressive, attractive and an absolute hoot to drive. It's also the Robb Report Car of the Year, beating out a dozen other luxury automobiles ranging from track stars like the Nissan GT-R and Corvette ZR1 to the quirky little SMART fortwo. The LP560-4 is the 16th winner of the award, given to the best and brightest of the luxury field by editors who know a thing or two about the good life. Testing took place in California's Napa Valley, where Robb Report staffers joined 50 guest judges to put the 13 vehicles through their paces.

The Gallardo won the award based on its supercar looks, fit and finish, and a four-wheel-drive system that makes the LP560-4 just as capable in the twisties as it is in a straight line. While the LP560-4 didn't change much aesthetically for 2009, Lamborghini made significant changes beneath the Gallardo's skin.

Robb Report Editor-in-Chief Brett Anderson summed up why the Gallardo came home with the hardware: "No past iterations of the Gallardo have delivered the combination of power and precision you get from this engine and four-wheel-drive system." Hit the jump to read the Robb Report press release, which includes the finishing order for all 13 vehicles.

Related GalleryFirst Drive: 2009 Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4

[Source: Robb Report]


PRESS RELEASE

ROBB REPORT EDITORS NAME LAMBORGHINI GALLARDO LP560-4 AS 2009 CAR OF THE YEAR

In March Issue, Luxury Lifestyle Authority Honors a Car That "Even Outperforms Its Looks"

MALIBU, CA (February 18, 2009) –Lauded as "a sports car cleverly designed as a supercar, without any of the usual supercar shortcomings," the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 has been selected by the editors of Robb Report as the luxury lifestyle magazine's 2009 Car of the Year.

Now in its 16th year, the award is presented annually to an automobile, formally introduced in the previous year, whose technical designs, styling, and performance position it as the world's preeminent sports or luxury car.

Selected from an exceptionally competitive field, the Gallardo LP560-4 outdistanced a dozen other luxury and sports cars to earn top honors. Listed in order of finish, the other finalists were the Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG, BMW M3, Porsche 911 Carrera S, Aston Martin DBS, Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé, Jaguar XF, Nissan GT-R, Tesla Roadster, Bentley Brooklands, Smart Fortwo, and Iconic GTR Roadster.

The Lamborghini's selection resulted from extensive testing in California's Napa Valley by a panel of experts that included Robb Report editor in chief Brett Anderson and correspondents Paul Dean and Marco Della Cava. Those journalists were joined by more than 50 guest judges, including executives and Robb Report readers from throughout the world.

"Though the Gallardo's body styling is familiar to Italian-sports-car enthusiasts, the LP560-4's performance is unlike anything they have experienced before from this marque, thanks to the brilliant fine tuning it has received" explained Mr. Anderson. "No past iterations of the Gallardo have delivered the combination of power and precision you get from this engine and four-wheel-drive system."

Equally impressed, Mr. Della Cava credited Lamborghini's sister brand, Audi, for its influence on the Gallardo: It has "impeccable ... build quality, superglue road manners, and enough visual oomph to revive the dead," he stated. "All the right numbers are here: a mid-mounted V-10 producing 552 hp; a 44-pound reduction in weight, thanks to a new transmission, composite brakes, and lighter suspension components; and the 4 after the car's badge number, which denotes a four-wheel-drive system that turns even novice drivers into mini Formula One racers."

Mr. Della Cava's views were echoed by fellow judge Paul Dean, who praised the Gallardo for its ability to work "in concert to furnish shotlike acceleration, the safety of all-wheel drive, the crispest of shifts, [and] a top speed that blurs landscapes."

"The success of the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 can be traced to the dedication and passion exhibited for the brand by every Lamborghini employee, coupled with the drive to consistently deliver the most exciting super sports cars in the world," stated Lamborghini president and CEO Stephan Winkelmann. "Robb Report's continued recognition of Lamborghini's efforts is very important to the brand, and the award for Car of the Year cannot be understated."

Hitting newsstands today, Robb Report's March issue provides discriminating automotive enthusiasts with an in-depth exploration of a wide array of new models and emerging technologies.

Now in its 33rd year, Robb Report is the international authority on the luxury lifestyle. Each month, the magazine reports on issues and trends affecting the affluent market, with coverage of exclusive events and features on exceptional automobiles, motorcycles, aircraft, art, jewelry, watches, fashion, travel, homes, wines, spirits, and cigars. Additional information can be accessed through the magazine's Web site at www.robbreport.com.