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Designing a successor to the delicious Lamborghini Miura was something of a challenge for Marcello Gandini, however, with the arrival of the 'Countach' in 1971, he demonstrated to the world that his ability to create automotive drama was alive and well. In fact, the word 'Countach' is Piedmontese slang for something that visually shocks and has no direct translation but 'Wow' is probably the most polite.
The first Countach appeared at the Geneva Show in 1971 - the same year that 'Hot Pants' appeared on our city streets - with a similar ability to distract. Big, bright and brash like the rest of the seventies, the Countach was to remain in production, through various iterations for 16 years. With hindsight, it's clear that the car's 'flying wedge' design, with a sloping snout that appeared to descend directly from the windscreen, and innovative 'scissor doors', became a template for every 'supercar' that followed. The original, beautifully clean profile was gradually bedecked with 'wings and things' as fashions changed over the years and frequent small mechanical changes were often the result of customer input in their capacity as unwitting 'development engineers'. However, by the time Lamborghini was 25 years old and the Countach Anniversary was introduced in 1988, the majority of these teething troubles were in the past.
The Anniversary was effectively a 'new' Countach, mechanically very similar to the 5000QV but sporting much-changed styling courtesy of Horatio Pagani. The rear air boxes were restyled and enlarged, while the vents behind them were changed so that they ran front-to-back instead of side-to-side. In addition, a new air dam and side skirting, both with air intakes, were fitted, and the taillights restyled to be narrower, with body-coloured panels replacing the upper and lower parts of the previous larger lights. These styling changes were striking on the 17-year-old design and had the added benefit of improving the engine's cooling, a problem with which the powerful Countach had always struggled. The Countach also featured 345/35R15 tyres, the widest available on a production car at the time. The factory only anticipated a limited demand but the sheer talent of this mature development meant that it actually became the most prolific Countach ever with 67 being finished in right-hand drive.
Offered here is an Anniversary Countach with a complete timeline and only one owner from new. The story begins with our vendor, a lifetime Lamborghini fan ordering the Countach in UK RHD-spec from London dealer Portland, visiting the factory during the build in early 1990 and having a dialogue with all the Lamborghini notaries. He was the proud owner of one of the earliest ever Countach, a 1975 LP400' Periscopio' which was finished in Arancio and was in the enviable position of being able to 'book-end' the many years of Countach production. He was keen to have his new Anniversary model finished in the same 'Arancio Miura' colour scheme but the management were initially reluctant as they no longer listed that colour, however, with a little bit of persuasion from no less than Sig Balboni, they eventually conceded. A fair bit of time was spent making sure that the new car's hue matched our vendor's 1975 LP400.
Since collection, it has been used lightly, covering only 6,390 km from new, and consequently must represent one the best examples of the original ‘poster car’ available today. It was moved into long term storage in 1995 and was completely recommissioned in June 2017 including a full brake overhaul, carburettors and fuel lines. The invoice from Colin Clarke Engineering amounted to a not inconsiderable £17,600 and this Countach 25A is now back on the road and ready to be enjoyed by only its second owner. The registration A3 DUU will remain with the car and it's supplied with the original document pack, the purchase and registration paperwork, service and recommissioning invoices, both keys, a set of Lamborghini driving gloves and a bespoke Portman car cover.
Very seldom does such a car with single ownership come to market with what can only be described as a perfect history, in remarkable condition and in a colour that pays homage to its legendary predecessor.
Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary Video