When the bright yellow prototype of the Lamborghini Countach LP400 was first shown to the public at the 1971 Geneva Motor Show many wondered if designer Marcello Gandini had lost his mind. How could this angular, trapezoid-based design have come from the same hand as the almost obscenely curvy Lamborghini Miura?
Of course in 1971 no one could have known that this new shape would define supercars for decades to come, spawning the cab-forward-wedge silhouette that became the de facto standard.
The first series of the Countach was the LP400, and it was fitted with the same 3929cc DOHC V12 as the still-in-production Miura with 6 Weber twin-choke 45 DCOE carburettors.
The model name LP400 Periscopio was derived from “Longitudinale Posteriore” (the engine orientation), “400” referencing the engine displacement, and “Periscopio” referencing the periscope-like rear vision mirror needed for rearward visibility.
Just 158 examples of the LP400 Periscopio were made before production shifted to the modified LP500 – the latter of which lost much of the simplicity of the first Gandini design, with wider wheel arches, an optional rear wing, a front spoiler, and more venting.
Today the original Countach is in demand with collectors. Values have uncreased significantly even in just the past 10 years or so, with immaculate examples like this one fetching $1,000,000 USD plus at auction.
The LP400 you see here was ordered new by Prince Mansour Bin Mashal of Saudi Arabia, in the same yellow as the original 1971 Geneva Motor Show prototype. He used the car sparingly, as did subsequent owners – it now has just 6,000 kilometres on the clock since new. It’s been refreshed in recent years with a fresh coat of Giallo Fly and a newly upholstered interior in the original tobacco leather. It’s also still wearing its original wheels, with their characteristically narrow tires – much wider rubber was fitted to later examples of the model.
This 1975 Lamborghini Countach LP400 Periscopio is due to roll across the auction block with RM Sotheby’s on the 27th of May, with an estimated value of between €900,000 and €1,100,000.
Go to original article: http://silodrome.com/lamborghini-countach-lp400-periscopio/