Lamborghini, up for auction the Countach with which Berger "betrayed" Ferrari

The car of the Italian brand, born to celebrate the creation of the LP400, had prompted the Austrian driver to buy it despite being under contract with the Maranello team. The price is tempting to collectors

Federico Mariani

Everything has been said and written about the rivalry between Lamborghini and Ferrari, which has entered the history of engines. But who knows what Ferruccio and Enzo, founders of their respective brands, would have thought if one of the vehicles produced had managed to bewitch a competitor’s driver. This is what happened to Gerhard Berger, former top man of the Maranello team in F1, who did not give up on a Lamborghini Countach 5.000 QV 25th Anniversary. The jewel, destined to end up at auction on June 26 at the house of Aguttes, can boast an incredible history.

lamborghini countach, the story

The Quattrovalvole model is one of the 650 units produced in 1989 on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the LP400. It had a V12 engine with a power of 375 hp and a displacement of 4,971 cc, it was built under the direction of Marcello Gandini, creator of other Lamborghini jewels such as the Miura. The appearance of this low (just 1.06 m high) and wide (2 m) specimen immediately struck the profilists, it is no coincidence that the name Countach derived from an exclamation in Piedmontese dialect. This machine would have given the inspiration for other future reinterpretations, including the Countach 5.000 Qv or Quattrovalvole from which the evolution dedicated to the first 25 years of the company would in turn derive. In this model, the revised front and side air intakes stand out, as well as the new side skirts. Power is ensured by the naturally aspirated 5.2-liter 455 hp V12 engine. QV 25th Anniversary can thus go from 0 to 100 km / h in less than 5 seconds flat. This was the last model of the Countach.

berger’s choice

The Countach’s qualities also impressed Berger. The Austrian driver had been with Ferrari since 1987 and by contract he would not have been able to drive cars produced by other brands. Despite the ban, however, Gerhard decided to buy the Lamborghini anyway, even at the cost of leaving it in the garage. In the days preceding the purchase, Berger took victory in the Portuguese GP, a success which would be followed by the announcement of his transfer to McLaren in 1990 alongside Ayrton Senna, with the consequent possibility of using his beloved Lamborghini. The idyll lasted until 2002, when the Austrian decided to sell the Countach despite having only 11,000 km under his belt. Since 2002 the car has benefited from some cosmetic repairs and the replacement of the rims with identical ones. About 40,000 euros of work, the invoice of which is available in the documents of the car that will be auctioned. The amount needed to get behind the wheel of the Lamborghini with which Berger betrayed Ferrari ranges between 350,000 and 450,000 euros.

the lamborghini of the future

Moving from history to the future, Lamborghini looks ahead. As announced by President Stephan Winkelmann, all cars will be hybrid by 2024. On the other hand, the curtain falls on the aspirated V12 epic with the Aventador Ultimae, a machine with remarkable performance: the V12 6.5 engine with 780 horsepower allows a 0-100 sprint in just 2.8 seconds and can reach 355 km / h maximum speed. A very memorable way to close an important part of history.

#Lamborghini #auction #Countach #Berger #betrayed #Ferrari

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