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Lamborghini - marque/manufacturer information

List of all Lamborghini cars

Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A., commonly referred to as Lamborghini, is an Italian manufacturer of high performance sports cars (supercar) based in the small Italian village of Sant'Agata Bolognese, near Bologna. Lamborghini is now a subsidiary of German car manufacturer Audi AG, which is in turn a subsidiary of Volkswagen. Its latest model, the Lamborghini Reventón, is one of the fastest and most expensive Italian supercars. The company was founded in 1963 by businessman Ferruccio Lamborghini (April 28, 1916–February 20, 1993), who owned a successful tractor factory, Lamborghini Trattori S.p.A..



As told by Ferruccio Lamborghini's son, Ferruccio Lamborghini went to meet Enzo Ferrari at the Ferrari factory to complain about the quality of the clutch in the Ferrari 250 GT he owned. Enzo Ferrari sent him away telling him to go and drive tractors because he was not able to drive cars. Lamborghini went back to his factory, had his Ferrari's clutch dismantled and realized that the clutch manufacturer was the same who supplied the clutches for his tractors. In his warehouse he found a spare part which he thought suitable, and when it was installed the problem was solved. Furious with what he considered to be Enzo Ferrari's arrogant and aloof treatment Ferrucio Lamborghini promised himself never to go back to Ferrari for another car but rather beat him at his own game by creating a superior sports car. Thus the idea of a Lamborghini sports car was born.

Ferruccio decided that his car was to have a V12 engine, and enlisted the services of talented engineer Giotto Bizzarrini, who had previously worked on a Ferrari V12. The new engine had 4 cams, a short stroke and 2 big bore valves per cylinder, and developed a surprising 350 horsepower (260 kW). The engine featured aluminium construction, with a crankshaft supported by seven main bearings, forged aluminium pistons, and camshafts with their own half-engine-speed sprocket and silent chain. The car the engine was mounted in was designed by Franco Scaglione's Scaglione-Touring.

This Lamborghini 350GTV prototype began making public appearances in 1963, starting with the Turin Auto Show. Sales of the production model, known as the 350GT, began the following year with great success, with over 130 examples sold. Born under the sign of the Taurus, Ferruccio Lamborghini used the bull as the badge by which to mark his new automobile.

Under Ferruccio Lamborghini

The 350GT by Lamborghini was followed up by the 400GT. The excellent sales of the 400GT and its predecessor gave the company sufficient funds to design its first supercar - the now-legendary Lamborghini Miura, which was premiered by Ferruccio himself in November 1965 at the Turin Auto Show. The car's engine was transversely mounted. The styling was executed by Marcello Gandini in less than a year; a completed car was displayed at the Geneva Auto Show in March, 1966 (the Turin car was only a chassis). The car's name was taken from that of a famed fighting-bull trainer, Don Eduardo Miura. The Miura was a success for Lamborghini: 111 were sold in 1967, and it propelled the company into the small world of exotic supercar manufacturers.

At the same time, the Espada, a four-seat car based on the Marzal concept car, was developed. The name Espada means sword in Spanish, and referred to the sword used by the matador in bullfighting. Using the 4-litre V12 in a conventional layout up front, this low slung touring car could attain a top speed of around 150 mph (240 km/h) in comfort. One interesting feature of the Espada was a glass taillight panel that used the same taillights as the contemporary Fiat 124 Coupe. The Espada received minor improvements in keeping with the time as the years went by, ending up with 3 different versions.

In 1971, Lamborghini brought the unusual-looking LP500 Countach prototype, named after an Italian slang term uttered in surprise by a person who had just seen the new car. The production LP400 Countach was introduced three years later. The prototype was the first car to sport Lamborghini's now-traditional scissor doors, along with vertically mounted rear air intakes. The same 4-litre V12 engine was used, an uprated 5-litre engine arriving later in the Countach production. The Countach was also one of the first cars to use the new Pirelli P-Zero tires when they came out. Lamborghini's own test driver was sometimes the "chauffeur" for motoring magazines' journalists, and stories of the Countach's amazing high speed cornering, power and grip were common. Another point noted by journalists was the manner in which reversing a Countach was accomplished; raising the driver's door and sitting on the door sill.

In 1972, however, the company suffered a major setback. A massive tractor order for a South American nation was cancelled, rendering upgrades Lamborghini had already made to its factories in anticipation of the demand useless. The money lost drove Ferruccio to sell part of his share in the tractor factory, which was taken over by Fiat. The tractor business was eventually acquired by SAME (now Same Deutz-Fahr). Lamborghini tractors are still sold today, as part of the SAME Deutz-Fahr Group.

Throughout the seventies, sales of the Countach kept the company in business. Soon enough, the car division became self-sufficient and profitable. Lamborghini, however, sold all his remaining stock in the company to a Swiss investor, leaving the automotive industry behind to pursue wine making from the comfort of his villa in the countryside. Ferruccio Lamborghini died in February 1993 at the age of 76.

Bankruptcy, Mimran, and Chrysler

The 1970s oil crisis plagued sales of high performance cars, and Lamborghini suffered budget and parts supply problems; cars were sold with two-year back orders, and customers became fed up with waiting for their cars. Also, Lamborghinis were never raced and were never fully developed; the company developed a reputation of building toys for rich playboys when Ferrari and Porsche, and Maserati before them built illustrious careers in the racing world. Since the beginning the cars had continuous and expensive reliability problems, in the '70s things became even worse, as cars now had to meet US emission requirements. All these factors contributed to the company's demise. Like many other exotic Italian automobiles, the components used were often of poor quality. In 1978, Lamborghini declared bankruptcy. An Italian court was appointed to find a buyer, and the Swiss-based Mimran brothers took over the company. The 1980s saw things turn around for Lamborghini under its new ownership.

In a surprise move, the company was sold to the Chrysler Corporation in 1987. Lamborghini at the time was working on the Countach's successor, the Diablo. Chrysler brought its vast resources to the playing field, along with design input, pollution controls, and new manufacturing techniques. The end result was another success for the company. The Lamborghini Diablo received fame much like that of its predecessor, and once again put the manufacturer on top of its game.

Post-Chrysler: Megatech and Audi

In 1994, poor economic circumstances at Chrysler forced them to sell Lamborghini to an Indonesian investment group headed by Tommy Suharto. These owners sold the company in the late 1990s, also while suffering from poor economic circumstances. By then however, the German car company Audi AG had gained interest in the ailing Italian company, and in 1998, in a complex series of transactions, Audi AG became the sole owner of Automobili Lamborghini.

Lamborghini's latest owner once again greatly influenced the design of its cars, such as today's Murcielago. Audi's vast technical resources helped produce one of Lamborghini's most sophisticated two-seaters to date.

Sales under Audi AG ownership
Year Sales
500 1,000 1,500 2,000 2,500
1996 211  
Audi Takeover in 1998
2002 424  
2003 1,305  
2004 1,592  
2005 1,600  
2006 2,087  

Lamborghini of Latin America

Jorge Antonio Fernandez Garcia set up his company, automoviles Lamborghini Latinamerica (based in Argentina), in 1994 with special permission granted by Automobili Lamborghini in Italy. The first cars, called the Eros and the Coatl were presented in 2000. These are hand-made Diablo-based special sportscars and from 2003 they are offered for sale only in South America.

Official site: automoviles Lamborghini Latinamerica sita oficial

Badge Licensing

The Lamborghini badge with its connotations of exotic motoring has been licensed for use on unrelated products such as mountain bikes, watches, cigar lighters, humidors, sunglasses, and notebook computers from Asus in Taiwan.


Vehicle Year Engine Displacement Top Speed Image
350GTV 1963 Lamborghini V12 3,464 cm³ 280 km/h (173 mph)
350GT 1964–1968 Lamborghini V12 3,464 cm³ 240 km/h (149 mph)
400GT 2+2 1966–1968 Lamborghini V12 3,929 cm³ 250 km/h (155 mph)
Miura 1966–1974 Lamborghini V12 3,929 cm³ 288 km/h (178 mph)
Espada 1968–1978 Lamborghini V12 3,929 cm³ 245 km/h (152 mph)
Islero 1968–1970 Lamborghini V12 3,929 cm³ 248 km/h (154 mph)
Jarama 1970–1978 Lamborghini V12 3,929 cm³ 240 km/h (149 mph)
Urraco 1970–1979 Lamborghini V8 2,463/2,996/1,994 cm³ 230 km/h (142 mph)
Countach 1974–1990 Lamborghini V12 3,929/4,754/5,167 cm³ 295 km/h (190+ mph)
Silhouette 1976–1977 Lamborghini V8 2,996 cm³ 260 km/h (161 mph)
Jalpa 1982–1990 Lamborghini V8 3,485 cm³ 240 km/h (149 mph)
LM002 1986–1992 Lamborghini V12 5,167 cm³ 210 km/h (150+ mph)
Diablo 1990–2001 Lamborghini V12 5,707/5,992 cm³ 330 km/h (205+ mph)
Murciélago 2001– Lamborghini V12 6,192/6,496 cm³ 335 km/h (208+ mph)
Gallardo 2003– Lamborghini V10 4,961 cm³ 309 km/h (197 mph)
Murciélago LP640 2006– Lamborghini V12 6,496 cm³ 340 km/h (211 mph)
Reventón 2007– Lamborghini V12 6,496 cm³ 352 km/h (218 mph)

Lamborghini's outrageous supercar models have brought Lamborghini much fame. The Miura, the Countach, the Diablo, and the Murciélago, continue to be some of the most desired super cars of all time. The current (2007) range consists of the Murciélago LP640, the Murciélago LP640 Roadster and the smaller, less expensive Gallardo, Gallardo Spyder and Gallardo Superleggera. All are extremely fast, mid-engined 2-seaters with Lamborghini's standard all-wheel drive systems. Their styling is largely the work of Belgian designer Luc Donckerwolke. Future models may include a rear-wheel-drive version of the Gallardo and possibly an SUV in the spirit of the LM002. The next generation of Lamborghini models will be penned by Walter de'Silva, who designed the 2006 Miura concept car and who replaced Luc Donckerwolke as head of Centro Stile Lamborghini, Lamborghini's in-house design department.

Racing Models

See also: Modena (racing team)

Ferruccio Lamborghini had set a rule that Lamborghini would not be involved in motor racing. He saw such a program as too expensive and too demanding in company resources. Consequently, no Lamborghini racing car was fabricated under his management. The closest the company came to building racing cars at that time was when the company's test driver Bob Wallace made a few highly modified prototypes based on existing models. Notable among these are the Muira SV based Jota and the Jarama S based Bob Wallace Special.

Under the management of Rosetti, Lamborghini entered into an agreement with BMW to build a production racing car in sufficient quantity for homologation. However, Lamborghini found itself unable to fulfill their part of the agreement. The car was eventually developed in-house by the BMW Motorsport Division, and was manufactured and sold as the BMW M1.

Lamborghini developed the QVX for the 1986 Group C championship season. One car was built, but lack of sponsorship caused it to miss the season. The QVX competed in only one race, the non-championship 1986 Southern Suns 500 km race at Kyalami in South Africa, driven by Tiff Needell. Despite the car finishing better than it started, sponsorship could not be found and the program was cancelled.

Lamborghini was an engine supplier in Formula One between the 1989 and 1993 Formula One seasons. It supplied engines to Larousse, Ligier, Lotus, Minardi and to a 'Lamborghini' team, although this last was not viewed as a works team by the car company. Late in 1991, a Lamborghini Formula One motor would be used in the Konrad KM-011 Group C sports car, but the car would only last a few races before the project was cancelled. The same engine, badged as a Chrysler by Lamborghini's then parent company, was tested by McLaren towards the end of the 1993 season, with a view to its use during the 1994 season. Although driver Ayrton Senna was reportedly impressed with the engine's performance, McLaren pulled out of negotiations, choosing a Peugeot engine instead, and Chrysler ended the project.

Two racing versions of the Diablo were built for the Diablo Supertrophy, a single-model racing series held annually from 1996 to 1999. In the first year, the model used in the series was the Diablo SVR, while the Diablo 6.0 GTR was used for the remaining three years.

Lamborghini developed the Murciélago R-GT as a production racing car to compete in the FIA GT Championship, the Super GT Championship and the American Le Mans Series in 2004. Their highest placing in any race that year was the opening round of the FIA GT Championship at Valencia, where the car entered by Reiter Engineering finished third from a fifth-place start. In 2006 during the opening round of the Super GT championship at Suzuka, a car run by the Japan Lamborghini Owners Club garnered the first victory (in class) by an R-GT.

A GT3 version of the Gallardo has been developed by Reiter Engineering.

A Murciélago R-GT entered by racing, driven by Christophe Bouchut and Stefan Mucke, won the opening round of the FIA GT Championship held at Zhuhai International Circuit, achieving the first major international race victory for Lamborghini.


Lamborghini has had a number of owners:

  • Ferruccio Lamborghini 1963–1972
  • Georges-Henri Rossetti and René Leimer 1972–1977
  • bankrupt 1977–1984
    • managed by Patrick Mimram 1980–1984
  • Patrick Mimram 1984–1987
  • Chrysler Corporation 1987–1994
  • Megatech 1994–1995 (Permission granted for the Creation of Lamborghini Latinoamerica S.A.)
  • V'Power, Mycom 1995–1998
  • Audi AG 1998-present

List of all Lamborghini cars

Source: Wikipedia


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