The owner of our featured Countach LP5000S, like most of us, grew up with a bright-red poster on his bedroom wall portraying this spectacularlooking car. And, as the decades ticked by from the time that poster was pinned to his wall, the Countach earned its place at the pinnacle of the supercar pantheon as one of the most striking vehicles ever built — whether in its purest form, as penned by Marcello Gandini, or, as in the later versions, covered with a myriad of air intakes, scoops, and wings.
Gazing longingly at the bright-red raging bull on that poster sparked a lifelong passion for Italian cars in the young teenager’s heart, and, though a Countach didn’t feature on his early shopping list, a succession of Alfa Romeos kept his love of sporting Italian machinery to the fore. His first Alfa — a Spider — was acquired when he was just 18 years old, and his undying passion for Italian cars — especially those wearing the charging-bull badge, a logo representing Taurus, the zodiac sign of the company’s founder Ferruccio Lamborghini — was further enhanced when, in 1989, he visited the Lamborghini factory in Sant’agata Bolognese, Italy. There, with eyes wide open, he witnessed the last of the Countachs rolling off the assembly line.
Pursuit of a dream
Fast forward to 2009, and, with his successful business ticking away quite nicely, it was time to pursue that childhood dream of owning a Countach before he was too old to enjoy it — and so the quest began.
The search was very specific, and the ideal choice quickly focused on one of the twovalves-per-cylinder Countachs, despite the fact that the four-valve (Quattrovalvole, or QV) models are considered more desirable because they are more powerful. The reason for this decision was based purely on the fact that the earlier V12 was rarer due to its much lower production numbers.
The primary search began on the internet, and a selection of cars from around the world was considered for suitability, with a final shortlist of five being identified. Four of these were located in the US — one each in San Diego, Connecticut, Florida, and Seattle — while the fifth car was resident in Spain (not all of which actually fitted his criteria). Sensibly, a decision was made to travel to the US and inspect the four cars located there, leaving the Spanish car out of the equation — unless, of course, he felt the need to look at it should all else fail.
While inspecting the West Coast–based cars, he test drove a pristine low-mileage example in San Diego. After setting out on a lengthy test drive along a perfect winding canyon road — four lanes wide with absolutely no traffic — he was able to stretch the long legs of the Countach’s 4.75-litre longitudinal-mounted V12, discovering how stable, smooth, and compliant the Lamborghini felt at relatively high speeds. It was his first drive in a car he’d been dreaming about since his teenage years, and, although sometimes reality just can’t measure up to our dreams, in this case, it was love at first drive. Without further ado, a deal was done.
This car had the added advantage of being the easiest, logistically, to ship back to New Zealand, and, just to make everything a little bit more special, the LP5000S that was soon being prepared for the trip was the very last two-valve-per-cylinder Lamborghini Countach to have rolled off the production line, so it definitely ticked all the boxes.
The Countach arrived in the country in late 2009 and breezed through the compliance process without any issues.
Since acquiring the car, the current owner has encountered no issues to speak of, except for — as with most low-mileage cars — a propensity for pesky oil leaks. However, due to a stringent maintenance regime, performed by the owner himself, the Countach is kept in perfect running condition at all times.
The owner — who prefers not to be named — would like to thank the Lamborghini Register in New Zealand (nz/ email@example.com) for its assistance and the enjoyment provided by the occasional club-organized outing with like-minded Lamborghini enthusiasts. A whole posse of Lamborghinis — what a sight that must be!