It took one full-throttle upshift into 4th gear while tracking away from an apex to remind us that the 2012 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 is a monster. The gear slams home with such authority that the ass end instantly jerks sideways a couple of feet before the Aventador can scramble the appropriate countermeasures to prevent its V12′s avalanche of power from having its way with the car’s carbon-fiber chassis, huge tires and the surrounding countryside. With the Aventador, Lamborghini has an all-new range-topping supercar to replace its aging Murcielago. It’s big, outlandish and powerful. In other words, it’s a typical Italian supercar. There’s a new wrinkle here, though — the Aventador is a pussycat. A 690-horsepower pussycat that will tear to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 2.9 seconds, reach 124 mph (200 km/h) 6 seconds later and rip off 10.5-second quarter-miles.