The story of the birth of Lamborghini had close ties to Ferrari. Be owner, Ferrucio Lamborghini, began his career in the industrial world after serving in a transport detachment to the Italian army in World War II. Seeing that there were many spare parts from the destroyed vehicles, Ferruccio decided to buy the remaining parts at very low prices to convert them into agricultural machinery.
Success in His new undertaking was not long in coming, thanks to the gradual reactivation that Italy had when the war ended. Transformed into a millionaire after a few years, Lamborghini began to give free rein to one of his “Hobbies”, that of collecting cars. Thus the Italian came to have a garage full of sports vehicles among which appeared models Mercedes-Benz, Lancia, Maserati, and also Ferrari, a company that by then already had more than thirty years in the automotive market.
Admirer of Enzo Ferrari and his vehicles, Lamborghini bought several copies of the Maranello signature but none of them responded mechanically as he intended. The damage to some of his Il Cavallino Rampante vehicles used to make him angry. The most particular story was the one that occurred with the clutch of a Ferrari 250 GTB which, after several revisions, failed to solve the problem.
Tired of having to endure these inconveniences, he struck up a conversation with the very Ferrari that went down in history. Words from Lamborghini himself: “The Ferraris just caused me problems. One day, tired of sending them to the workshop, I called Enzo to tell him that his cars were pure rubbish and he replied that a tractor manufacturer could not understand his sports cars “.
That brief conversation was the first chapter of a rivalry that has spanned the years. Furious at the reply, Ferrucio decided to set up his own sports car factory (Automobili Lamborghini Holding) and become a direct rival of Ferrari. The first plant was installed in 1963 in Sant’Agata Bolognese, a few kilometers from Maranello, the historic headquarters of Ferrari.
The first Lamborghini was the 350 GT, then the 400 GT came and the one that would be the first icon of the brand, the Miura in 1966. Ferrucio’s idea was not only to build exclusive supercars but he also sought to offer other types of cheaper models like the Urraco with a 1972 V8 engine. Two years later came a new symbol of the brand, with the appearance of the Countach that lasted 16 years in the market.
In the 90’s, The Devil was born, which with its V12 engine took the title of the fastest production vehicle in the world, exceeding 320 km / h. With the release of this model, the Murcielago arrived in 2001 and at least powerful Gallardo in 2003.
These last two examples were the ones that introduced the brand to the world of motorsport. In early 2003, there was an agreement with the German team Reiter Engineering for Lamborghini to make its debut in the FIA GT. The idea of competitions for Ferruccio had already been discarded in the beginning because according to his words: “Racing is the quickest way to go bankrupt, I compete on the street.” For this, the Murcielago had to be adapted to GT standards and later to the Gallardo GTR.
After so much time of development and studies, Lamborghini’s latest star is the Urus, an SUV that came to face its rivals from the most iconic brands, like the Porsche Cayenne, the Jaguar F-Pace and the Bentley Bentayga.
Three icons of Lamborghini’s early years
Developed between 1966 and 1972, the Miura was inspired by the sport prototypes of the time, such as the Ford GT40 and the Ferrari 250 LM, which in those years had a great rivalry in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The Miura, which started as a concept of a transverse rear mid-engine chassis and rigid and ultralight structure, was designed by the Bertone bodywork company, more precisely by Marcello Gandini, a 25-year-old young designer.
The first model, called the P400, was presented at the 1966 Geneva Motor Show. This It was equipped with a powerful 3.9-liter V12 engine that developed about 350 hp.
Its name was taken from bullfighting (art and technique of fighting or fighting bulls): Miura is the name of one of the best known bull herds. In its years of life, 764 units were manufactured.
The Urraco, which was presented at the Turin Motor Show at the end of 1970. A model that stood out for its innovative technical solutions for the time thanks to the contribution of the engineer Paolo Stanzani, technical father of the Urraco and Technical Director of Lamborghini in that moment.
This model was a 2 + 2 coupe, with central rear V8 engine and independent suspension, with McPherson suspension schemes on both the front and rear, used for the first time in a production vehicle.
Initially presented with the 2.5-liter V8, which developed 220 hp at 7,800 rpm with which it reached a top speed of 245 km / h, the Urraco showed the double novelty of an 8-cylinder engine and a distribution with a single overhead camshaft per bench.
The production system was another innovation, planned from the early stages of the project to be much less handmade than the rest of the brand’s models. From 1970 to 1979 776 units were produced.
One of the most emblematic models of the Sant’Agata Bolognese brand was developed between 1974 and 1990. With bodywork made of aluminum and fiberglass, the Countach featured a rear-wheel drive and a V12 engine that initially offered a displacement of 3.9 liters and finished in 5.2 liters and 455 horsepower.
The story goes that lby word Countach! was the one that Ferruccio Lamborghini exclaimed when he first saw the prototype of the new sports car they were working on. In Piedmontese dialect, the word “Countach” is an exclamation of astonishment used by men when they see a beautiful woman. And with this name the car was baptized, breaking the tradition of naming the different Lamborghini models with names related to the world of bullfighting.
After 16 years of life, the Countach gave way to the Devil after some 1975 units were produced.