Profits at Lamborghini rocketed to the highest level in the company’s history last year despite its Italian factory closing down for two months during the pandemic.
The firm, which is owned by Volkswagen (VOW3.DE), said performance was fuelled by demand in China, which is set to overtake Germany as its second largest market this year for the first time. It was also boosted by strong income from its “limited special series” models.
Although sales were lower than the previous year, Lamborghini revealed it sold more expensive and customised supercars, which pushed profits higher.
The company sold 7,430 cars globally last year, delivering 2,224 cars to the US, its largest market, compared to the 8,250 it delivered worldwide in 2019.
Its new sports utility vehicle (SUV) Urus accounted for 59% of the company's sales worldwide last year.
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"We were surprised," chief executive Stephan Winkelmann said. “Urus is giving us peace of mind in terms of return on investment and also earnings, and the earnings are giving us the confidence to reinvest in the future.”
He told CNBC: “We have already covered with customer orders nine months of the year for 2021. So we are looking at the year 2021 in quite a positive bent.
“It's a bit like with the stock markets: the buyer's spirits are up. They can't wait for the moment to get out again and to enjoy life."
The company admitted that its biggest challenge was the tightening of emissions regulations and the shift to electric vehicles.
Luxury carmaker Bentley, which is also owned by Volkswagen, has already committed to being an “end-to-end carbon neutral organisation”, aiming to offer only plug-in hybrid or battery electric cars by 2026.
In November last year, it revealed plans to go green in the next 10 years, switching its fossil fuel model range to a full electric vehicle line.
Part of its new “Beyond100 plan”, it aims to be completely carbon neutral across its manufacturing by 2030 as its German owners continue to pump billions of euros into EV technology.
The move will mean Bentley will retire its famous 12-cylinder petrol engines, with workers on internal combustion technology to be redeployed within the company.
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