GENEVA — The reason Lamborghini's global sales soared 51 percent to 5,750 units in 2018 can be summed up in one word: Urus.
The exotic brand's long-awaited entry into the SUV segment went on sale in July and quickly contributed 1,761 sales globally last year, around 500 of them in the U.S. alone.
Federico Foschini, Automobili Lamborghini's chief commercial officer, predicts the number will jump significantly again this year.
"This year we're planning to go to between 7,000 and 8,000," Foschini said of the company's total sales outlook, speaking to Automotive News at the Geneva auto show this month. "Because this year we'll have the full year of production of Urus. We'll be at full capacity."
Lamborghini currently has a worldwide Urus order bank representing 10 to 12 months of factory production, Foschini said.
"We don't want to flood the market, because we are still in a luxury segment and we need to keep control of the offer compared to the demand," he said.
"I think that situation will improve just a little bit, but we are in a very good situation in terms of demand and offer. We are balanced at the moment."
Foschini called the Urus a game changer for the brand, with more than 70 percent of Urus buyers being new to Lamborghini. Conquesting was a target for the Urus from the start, Foschini said. Lamborghini's mission now will be to keep those new-to-the-brand customers satisfied, he added.
"The customer base is becoming wider and wider," he said. "There's a new kind of profile being attracted by Lamborghini, of people who maybe are not super sports car fans, but who want a car for daily use. They want a high-performance car and a luxury car. Urus is the answer."