I’m sorry that I didn’t post on Friday. I’ve been fighting an ear infection, and I had high school orientation. I hope this post garners forgiveness from your kind and sympathetic hearts… Match of the 80’s, Lamborghini versus Ferrari. Let’s all take take a nostalgic trip.
Drawn in 1970 by the infamous designer, Marcello Gandini, the man who penned the now-infamous Lamborghini Muira and Lancia Stratos, the Lamborghini Countach was a radical departure from what Ferruccio Lamborghini would have imagined.
First shown to the world at the 1971 Geneva Motor Show, the Countach wowed the breath out of just about everybody there. The Countach’s design still takes one’s breath away, when lucky enough to view one. It’s amazing how far the borders of reality are. The Countach pushes them until you remember it’s a car, not a ride to space.
Of course, I’ll have to start somewhere on the Countach. How about the name? The name is actually a quite vulgar Piedmontese expression when a man sees an attractive woman. Countach is actually pronounced coontash. It quite literally means “What a piece of a@%!” Some rumors say that Nuccio Bertone of the design studio walked in and said, “Countach!”
Let’s see what we’ve reviewed. We’ve reviewed the unearthly design, the right-out-of-South Park-name,and now we’ll move on to Satan’s orchestra of an engine and exhaust. If you own a Countach, you could quite possibly put up posters throughout town, and charge a good deal of money to let various strangers listen to you start the Countach from a cold start. All it takes is a simple twist of the key, and then that massive 5.2 liter V12 bangs, rumbles, roars, sets off car alarms, and does other destructive-sounding sounds as it gets all the way up to 3000 rpm in less than two minutes.
The Countach is as much fun to drive as it is to admire. But, beware of the clutch that will requires at least 50 pounds of pressure to move, and the steering is almost as hard to navigate, requiring just about 35 pounds of pressure to manhandle the steering wheel to the left or the right.
On the other hand, the Ferrari Testarossa is a much more civilized car that will keep pace with the much louder Countach (if you lose the Countach while in the Testarossa, you’ll definitely hear it!). Motor Trend’s Senior Editor, Jonny Lieberman found the 1993 512 Testarossa to be a much more fun car than the larger-than-life Countach. Why? Because the Ferrari is faster, it shifted better, it rode better, it turned into corners better, and in just about every way that a car can separate itself from it’s competitors, the prancing horse pranced away from the bellowing, rumbling, raging bull. Don’t put Lamborghini down. The Countach is certainly a good car. It’s just not a great car to drive. The monstrously extroverted Countach feels primitive and much older than the Testarossa. It’s amazing how much two supercars can feel so different. That’s what five years will do to you.
For Jonny and those of you who had posters of the Countach, it’s a score for you. But, for my generation (and any other generation), it’s a score for both of the cars. I’d take either of them. Just throw me the keys, a driver’s license, insurance papers, and anything else needed, and you won’t see me for a while.
P.S. the Countach and Testarossa are MUCH safer than a Morgan!