For decades, Lamborghini has been known for brash supercars that combine brute power and daring design, such as the classic Miura or the edgy Countach. Now the Italian company’s successful push into more comfortable SUVs has helped to boost its valuation to $11 billion, making it a viable initial public offering candidate for owner Volkswagen Group, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analysts.
Soaring sales of the Urus SUV, introduced in mid-2018, are helping Lamborghini draw level with Ferrari, while the new Aventador and a hybrid supercar hitting the market in 2020 will help lift margins beyond 30 percent, BI’s Michael Dean and Gillian Davis said in a research note. They previously estimated Lamborghini's valuation at $9 billion.
"VW's partial IPO of Traton trucks sets the stage for further corporate restructuring, which should include a Lamborghini IPO, in our view," Dean and Davis said.
The IPO of Traton in June is regarded as the first tangible result from an asset review that has lasted three years and counting.
VW Group's byzantine structure -- covering 12 vehicle brands and ownership ranging from the Porsche and Piech descendants of the VW Beetle's creator to its home state of Lower Saxony and the Qatar Investment authority -- has proven tension-prone.
While Porsche sports cars and Ducati motorbikes have in the past been mooted as possible sale candidates, VW executives have yet to clarify their plans. Like Ducati, Lamborghini is officially owned by Audi, which in turn is controlled by VW Group.
"There is currently no decision to change the structure of the Audi group," VW Group said in an emailed statement.
Lamborghini started making sports cars in the early 1960s, but its roots date back to the tractor company founded by Ferruccio Lamborghini in the aftermath of World War II.