Bruce Wayne drove one — and ultimately crashed it — in the Dark Knight movies. It’s named after a fighting bull that survived 24 sword strokes in 1879, and is one of Lamborghini’s most iconic models in its history, continuing the lineage of its V12-powered supercars. It’s a minor mouthful, but the mid-engined, all-wheel drive Murcielago is a beast for the ages – and one has just resurfaced.
Investment and cars aren’t always common friends, but when the opportunity knocks, there are times when it’s worth answering the door; especially when a Lamborghini such as this exceptional example set to be auctioned off by Turners Cars on November 2, 2019, is sitting on the other side.
The jaw-dropping Italian thoroughbred is one of a selection of over 35 interesting cars being sold via live outcry auction on the day — the eccentric mix inclusive of a 2007 Caterham Superlight, a 1990 BMW 850, and a 1986 Pontiac TransAm Firebird. Those wanting to peruse the full Turners Cars catalogue can do so by clicking here.
Some rare and exotic vehicles are offering real investments, and the real trick is finding the right time in the value curve to invest. Ideally, an investment vehicle is old enough to avoid the downward drop of 30-50 per cent in the first five years, but early enough to catch it before the values and demand rise as it ascends into sought-after-classic status.
Any Lamborghini is a relatively rare sight, and the Murcielago is right up there with the icons of the marque; a signature of wealth and luxury following on from the Diablo and, before that, the Countach — the archetypal poster of the 1970s along with a smiling Farah Fawcett. All those Lamborghinis were (and are) aspirational dreams of children and adults alike, punctuated by their V12 engines and scissor doors.
The Murcielago remains one of the true modern classics, and the last of the ‘traditional, true’ Lamborghinis from a time when supercars were scary, and before the Audi Group came in and made them all more logical and rational and profitable with cars like the Murcielago’s successor; the slightly more usable Aventador.
With production starting in 2001 the Murcielago ran until 2010, through a number of iterations and name evolutions, including LP640, SuperVeloce and LP670-4. The alphanumeric designation does have meaning: LP is an acronym for engine orientation (Longitudinal Position) of the V12 engine, 640/670 referring to the power output (PS), and 4 highlighting its four-wheel drive.
The low roof-line, just 1.2m off the ground, means ingress and egress is sometimes tricky. And it’s made uniquely challenging — but equally extroverted — with the scissor doors. Reversing is a skill in itself, with Lamborghini’s test driver establishing a method of sitting on the open door’s wide sill and looking back out and over the rear while operating the pedals and steering wheel.
Of course driving a Murcielago is a rare opportunity, but twisting the traditional key and hearing the high-speed whirring before a growling V12 fires into life is one of those events that sends chills down the spine.
With a 30/70 split to front and rear wheels and a 6.5L V12 producing 471kW and hitting 0-100km/h in 3.2 seconds, the Murcielago still needed a fair amount of taming. It’s one of the cars that’s happier at speed, exercising its lungs through winding country roads more than the stop-start grind, — far more fitting revving out beyond 8000rpm rather than couped up in a traffic cage.
As the speeds and temperatures rise, vents behind the C-pillar rise to scoop in more cooling air, and those bold and brave enough to floor the throttle are rewarded with an overload of the senses, from sights and sounds to the smells of Italian metal heating and cooling. It’s all so gloriously Italian; part romance, part viscous animal, always demanding a level of attention and respect.
Originally produced in manual transmission versions only, with the Ferrari-mimicking exposed metal gearshift gate, an automated manual was later introduced with made it a little more user-friendly. Just a little …
With just 4099 Murcielagos produced worldwide and just 14 registered in New Zealand, this Pearl Yellow example punctuates the Turners Cars lineup. With less than 13,000km and that automated manual, it’s an excellent example of the breed. And it goes under the hammer during the Classic Cars Auction at 1 Detroit Place, Christchurch, on Saturday Nov 2 at 12.00pm.
To view the car and register interest in this Lamborghini Murcielago, click here. If you’re interested in the V12 beast but can’t make it, bidding can also be carried out via the Turners Live. For more information on Turners Live and to set up your account, click here.