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Lamborghini Company History

Published: 24th Mar 2011 - 0 Comments - Be the first, contribute now!


Lamborghini Archive

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Born on 28 April 1916, in Renazzo di Cento, Ferruccio Lamborghini was destined to work with machinery in some way. His parents were farmers, and from the outset Lamborghini came into contact with all sorts of farming implements. As a result he studied at the local technical institute, where he excelled. Although lamborghini spent the War years with the RAF, as soon as the hostilities were over he spotted a business opportunity; converting military vehicles into civilian ones. The expansion of Lamborghini’s empire was rapid, with plenty of vehicles available, as well as labour to convert them. There was also a steady demand for them and by 1947 Lamborghini was able to buy a Fiat Topolino, which was entered in the 1948 Mille Miglia. An accident after 700 miles led Lamborghini to believe that racing wasn’t for him, which is why he put the Fiat to one side and focused instead on setting up a tractor manufacturing company in 1949.

Building the vehicles from scratch, rather than converting surplus ones, meant Lamborghini had to remain focused on this new venture. His tractors were superbly made and sold extremely well, and by the time he expanded into constructing boilers and air conditioning systems in 1960, Lamborghini was already one of his country’s great industrialists.

Such success had brought great wealth with it, and as a result Lamborghini owned a fleet of luxury and sports cars. Among them was a Ferrari, which he felt was too noisy; Lamborghini reckoned a sports car should be far more refined. Everybody knew that Ferrari’s road cars at that time were there just to finance the racing team, and this was just the catalyst for Lamborghini to set up his own specialist car company. With a fortune already amassed, L a m b o rghini was able to construct a completely new state-of-the-art factory. He chose to locate it in Sant’Agata, 25km north of Bologna, with the work starting in 1963 and concluding the following year. L a m b o rghini contracted Franco Scaglione to design his first car, and the results were unpalatable to say the least.… It’s likely that none of the big coachbuilders could take the job on because the deadlines w e re too tight, but at least the chassis construction went according to plan. This was carried out by Modenese company Neri and Bonacini, and it incorporated all the features expected of a contemporary topend performance car. However, this initial prototype was poorly made (by the Sargiotto Bodyworks of Turin) and it didn’t exactly get the company off to a great start - it was no surprise that the car swiftly got hidden away.

For his next car, Lamborghini contracted well established coachbuilder Touring to come up with a cleaner design that was based heavily on the 350GTV but which did away with the most awkward parts. Consequently, the 350GT featured a fractionally longer wheelbase, a taller roofline and a smoother V12 engine that displaced 3464cc to give 270bhp with its six Weber 40DCOE carburettors. It also ditched the dry-sump lubrication, to reduce production costs, and when the new model made its debut at the 1964 Geneva motor show, the reviews were far more enthusiastic than they had been for the 350GTV. The Lamborghini phenomenon as we now know it was underway…

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