Lamborghini is celebrating one of its most definitive models as the Countach turns 50by Dim Angelov, on
Lamborghini, as a carmaker, had an interesting start. We won’t go into the details, as we are sure most of you are familiar with Lamborghini’s automotive history. What you may have forgotten is that, in 1971, one of the most significant cars Lamborghini has ever made came out, and now, it’s celebrating its 50th anniversary. Sant’Agata Bolognese has launched a series of four videos on its social media channels. Every Monday, a video will commemorate the mid-engine supercar, by featuring inspirational personalities, involved in its development. The first one features the designer himself – Marcelo Gandini.
The 1970s were a period of great innovation. This also applied to automobiles, and the Countach fully reflects that. Its wedge-shaped body looked like nothing else on the road. The full story of the Lamborghini Countach is truly epic, as it had the unenviable task to replace another iconic model – the Lamborghini Miura. Luckily, it managed to do that quite well.
The car was produced for 16 years, with a total of 1,999 units produced in all its five production variants.
First came the 1973 Countach LP 400. It was supposed to feature a 5.0-liter version of the Sant’Agata V-12, but due to packaging and reliability reasons, it received the familiar 3.9-liter V-12, which put out 375 horsepower. The LP 400 is among the most sought-after versions, with 152 units being produced between 1973 and 1977.
In 1978 came the LP 400S, which had different versions. Series One (50 made) featured a low roof, low trim, smooth Campagnolo rims, and 45-mm Weber carburetors. Series Two (105 made) featured smooth concave wheels and a lower suspension. Series Three (82 made) had increased ride height and a slightly more spacious interior (3 cm / 1.2 inches more). However, power was decreased from 375 to 360 horsepower, through the use of smaller, 40-mm, carburetors. It was also heavier.
In 1982 came the LP 500S (LP 5000S in the US).
The engine was now a 4.8-liter V-12 and power was back to 375 horsepower, although at a lower engine speed (7,000 vs 8,000 RPM). Torque was up from 271 pound-feet (368 Nm) to 308 pound-feet (418 Nm).
The US version had 353 horsepower, but more torque at 319 pound-feet (433 Nm). A total of 321 LP 500S/LP 5000S were built, between 1982 and 1985.
In 1985, the Lamborghini Countach evolved into the LP5000 QV “Quttrovalvole” (four-valves). The V-12 was enlarged again, this time to 5.2 liters. It also had four valves per cylinder and new downdraft carburetors, allowing for 455 horsepower and 369 pound-feet (500 Nm). A total of 610 cars were made in this specification. The US got a version of the 5000QV that featured Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection, rated at 420 horsepower. 66 fuel-injected cars were made.
1988 gave us the Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary edition. It celebrated a quarter-century of Lamborghini cars. The car was based on the LP500 QV, which meant it had a 5.2-liter V-12 with 455 horsepower and 369 pound-feet (500 Nm). It could reach from 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) in around 4.5 seconds, on its way to 184 mph (296 km/h). However, the body was extensively revised by Horacio Pagani, at the time working for Lamborghini. As with the LP 500QV on which it was based, US versions were fuel-injected and were down 35 horsepower.
|0 to 60 mph||4.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||184 mph|
The Countach was promptly succeeded by the Lamborghini Diablo – another iconic model – but the Countach still remains one of the most outrageous and inspiring cars to come out from the “Raging Bull” factory.