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Lamborghini Jalpa

Lamborghini Jalpa Published: 16th May 2017 - 0 Comments - Be the first, contribute now!

Lamborghini Jalpa
Lamborghini Jalpa
Lamborghini Jalpa
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£80,000-£120,000+ - Hollywood looks - Targa top - Soaring values

Jalpa was part of Lamborghini’s origami-styled mid-engined Urraco family of the 1970s and was made to lure wealthy enthusiasts away from Ferrari 308s. However, just under 350 were made before Lamborghini’s then current owner, Chrysler, killed it off nearly 30 years ago.

Driving

V8 powered, the Jalpa is a fair rival to the more favoured Ferrari and equally as satisfying to drive and is also a tad roomier and accommodating for your luggage, although rear visibility, thanks to those buttresses and that look-at-me big rear wing, is very poor.

In a group test with a 911 and 308, Fast Lane remarked the Jalpa had one of the best sounding engines ever and the car had a lovely rawness about it and a “character car in the old tradition”. The monthly concluded that, while the car had its faults the Jalpa “delivers the goods in a trusty and exciting way” and was by no means the booby prize out of the threesome.

Best models

Due to it being singleton model there’s not much to say here other than a cosmetic revamp for 1984 resulted in a new twin rear light design along with colour-coded body panels. Fewer than 50 RHD cars were made, incidentally, out of 410 so you may have to search overseas.

Values

Once known as a beginner’s Lambo, values are anything but and you’re looking at well over £80-100K for a really nice car – four times its new cost of £26,000 in 1981. Projects start from 50 grand, if you can find one but be warned, as resto costs are prohibitive (see Buying Advice).

Buying advice

This is where you can come unstuck in a big way. According to specialists, the Jalpa is a lot more complex and pricier to run, r0epair and restore than a Ferrari, with the complex body structure an absolute nightmare that’s prone to dissolving. It’s made worse by the fact that everything has now to be hand made as there’s no panel availability.

Engines can be time-bombs, prone to breaking its sodium-filled valves; many have been replaced with normal types; if there’s a bill to prove this it’s A Good Thing. Clutches are a £1000 repair and experts such as colinclarkeengineering.co.uk and GTB Restorations know how to do it properly.

Diffs are inherently noisy although the rest of the running gear holds few horrors and some items – such as brake bits from eurospares – are almost Ford Fiesta cheap. If a car feels loose and floppy on a test drive, it’s usually simply due to shot suspension bushes where a £200+ refit is said to transform any Jalpa. There’s a fair few clubs and forums who can help out.

 



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