Carbon-fibre is now commonplace among high-performance vehicles that almost every supercar manufacturer is using it these days. Lamborghini is no exception, but the Italian company has its sights set on the future, which goes beyond just carbon-fibre bodywork, and into carbon-fibre connecting rods in the engine.

This is just one of the several carbon-based technologies Lamborghini is looking to develop in its new Seattle-based carbon-fibre research facility, the Advanced Composite Structures Laboratory (ACSL). Operating as an entity outside of the company’s headquarters in Sant’Agata Bolognese, the ACSL is responsible for unlocking new potential in carbon-fibre.

“Carbon-fibre is a material that Lamborghini has a long history with. Starting with the Countach Quattrovalvole and continuing today, it is one of the most important keys to the success of our cars in the past, present and future,” said Lamborghini CEO Stefano Domenicali.

At the inauguration ceremony of the ACSL, Maurizio Reggiani, Research & Development director at Lamborghini told Automotive News that the goal is for the Italian carmaker to have the world’s first production car with carbon connectors.

Among the benefits of this include not just a significant weight saving over steel – between 40% and 50% – but also noticeably improved power and acceleration if used in Lamborghini’s engines, including its V12 powerplant.

“I [hope] that in one, one-and-a-half years, we are able to finish development and say this can be a part that can be in the future in the engine. I hope that we are able to have something in production soon,” Reggiani said, adding that the technology will be feasible in the Aventador’s successor, set to be introduced in 2020 or 2021.

The rods themselves will be made from Lamborghini’s patented Forged Composite, which made its debut in 2010 with the Sesto Elemento. The ACSL-developed material shortens the amount of production time required to form components by comparison the traditional methods.

Forged composites involve inserting a premixed amount of carbon-fibre and resin into a steel mould, and applying a substantial amount of heat and pressure. In just three minutes, the piece is ready for finishing, a drastic reduction from the 12-hour and 3-hour cycle times of prepreg and resin transfer moulding methods.