Lamborghini Countach LP5000S

As originally styled by Bertone’s Marcello Gandini, the Lamborghini Countach was a striking wedge with a bold mix of angles, curves, flat surfaces and those impossibly exotic ‘scissor doors’.

But it was in the form seen here, offered from 1978, that the Countach became the automotive pin-up of choice for a whole generation of car-mad teenagers. The flanks were extravagantly flared, with wheelarch extensions to complement the existing NACA side ducts, and the fantasy was completed by a giant (optional) arrowhead rear wing that sliced 10mph off the top speed but increased stability.

For 1982, the year of this car, what had been the LP400 S model with 350bhp became the LP500 S, soon re-named the 5000S as here. The thunderous V12 engine, now 4754cc, made 375bhp, making a top speed of 182mph achievable without that rear wing.

The Countach, it must be said, is not the most practical of machines: the windows barely open; the sills over the tubular understructure are massively wide; and reversing requires the driver to half-sit on the sill, with the door open, while manoeuvring the car. It is easy to forgive such foibles, though, when a car offers this sort of visual and aural drama.


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