Turin Car Show, 1965. Creating a revolution in the history of the automobile, two very young engineers, Giampaolo Dallara and Paolo Stanzani, pulled off what both experts and the public thought was a risky gamble. Ferruccio Lamborghini was no longer content to put his super sports cars on the roads: he now wanted to push the engine back from its usual position.
Up to that point, Automobili Lamborghini had shown what it could do in terms of engineering, and that it could do it well, as the 350 GT and the 400 GT clearly demonstrated: beating the best in terms of mechanical quality had been already a huge achievement. But the Miura was challenging the impossible.
The Miura appeared as a breathtaking gem, with the most stunning design. The Miura was a mechanical marvel and a force of nature. Magazine covers and newspaper articles were in absolute awe. After all, the 4-litre V12 unleashed 350 horsepower, an output destined to increase over time and enter the hearts of enthusiasts everywhere.
From every point of view, the Lamborghini Miura was incomparable, and it was also capable of incredible flexibility, going from 20 to 275 km/h in fifth gear (according to Paul Frère, winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans). Details, too, have contributed to its legendary status. The name alone says it all: Miura, the most powerful of all bulls, and the first time Lamborghini used a designation taken from the world of bullfighting. It was a hunch that would launch a wonderful tradition.
“I’m the one who can create the shoe for your foot.”
And there are countless anecdotes about how the concept arose. Bertone, thrilled and amazed to see the chassis and powertrain for the Miura, went up to Ferruccio Lamborghini and introduced himself, saying: “I’m the one who can create the shoe for your foot.” It was the designer Marcello Gandini, however, who was entrusted with the bodywork, and he recounts how the whole team worked day and night to be on time for Switzerland. And it was certainly worth their while, for the Miura became the stuff of legend at the Geneva Car Show in 1966.
The roar of those 12 cylinders still reverberates through history.