The Lamborghini Countach is an automotive icon. It was, in some ways, the successor to the even more iconic Miura. The Countach entered production in 1974, but work on the project had started in 1970. The design team comprising of Italian greats like Marcello Gandini and Paolo Stanzani. To celebrate the 50 years since its inception, Lamborghini’s designers have taken a modern crack at their own legend, and this is the result: the Countach LPI 800-4.
“The first Countach has been present in our Centro Stile as a model for some years now”, explains Mitja Borkert, Head of Centro Stile. “Whenever I look at it, it gives me goosebumps and it serves as the perfect reminder for me and the entire design team to design every future Lamborghini in a visionary and futuristic way. This is an unnegotiable part of our DNA, the essence if you so will. The first Countach shaped the Lamborghini design DNA like no other car; the new Countach translates that unconventional and edgy character into the future.”
Lamborghini is truly in a transitional phase at the moment. The Italian sports car marquee had earlier announced its plans to be fully electrified shortly and even launch an EV by the end of the decade. This also coincides with the current flagship model, the Aventador, due to be replaced. Lamborghini is exceptional at designing limited-edition models that are sold for millions a piece and combine loud performance with beautifully flamboyant looks. When the Murcielago was being phased out, we got the Reventon that truly started Lamborghini’s “Few of” series and this homage falls into the same category. The Sian was the first hint at the Bull’s future with its hybrid-V12 powertrain and the Countach borrows the same tech.
At its heart, the Countach LPI 800-4 has the same 6.5-litre naturally-aspirated V12 as the Aventador Ultimae that makes 780hp. In addition, it has a 48V electric motor mounted on the gearbox making 34hp for a combined output of 814hp which makes it more powerful than the Sian too. All of this is sent to all four wheels via a 7-speed single-clutch automated manual transmission. Lamborghini claims a 0-100kph sprint time of 2.8 seconds and a top speed of 355kkph.
The tech is new, but the design is retro-themed and takes cues from various iterations of the Countach that were released over its production run of nearly two decades. The LPI 800-4 carries that wedge-like shape, the low front end and hexagonal wheel arches from the original. It also features similarly designed intakes like the ones just behind the doors and scoops on top of the rear haunches with the slats. Some of the design changes were to ensure enough cooling for the much more powerful engine while some were due to legislative restrictions. It does not get pop-up headlamps but they are still rectangular and similar in design to the original. They also don’t feature Lambo’s usual y-shape details. Even the bumper design and badging stay true to the original Countach.
Meanwhile, the three-part taillamps look identical to the ones found on the Sian but also feature vents underneath to help dissipate turbulent air off the phat rear wheels. The quad-exit exhaust design is directly inspired by the original but it sits a lot higher here thanks to the design of the carbon fibre rear diffuser.
This limited-edition tribute does not get the fixed-wing and settles for an active wing that sits flush with the bodywork. It looks more like the standard Countach, but fans have been divided over this design choice. Many believe that the LP 500 QV was the true poster car of the 80s with its large (and mostly pointless) wing that made it stand out even in a sea of supercars. I prefer this clean look for the homage as it doesn’t distract from the rest of the design. Yes, it’s a V12 Lambo so of course, it has scissor doors.
The new Countach hybrid made its public debut at the Quail event as part of the 2021 Monterey Car Week in the US. Its debut spec exterior is inspired by the Countach LP 400 S owned by Ferrucio Lamborghini himself. The paint finish is called Bianco Siderale which mixes the white with a hint of pearlescent blue. Various other heritage paint options will be available for the lucky few customers who will get a Countach LPI 800-4, among the various other modern metallic paints.
Its cabin is a combination of heritage and technology. The interior is nice and retro thanks to the red upholstery. The tech is similar to other modern Lambo coupes with a digital driver’s display and an 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system in the centre console. It also has modern comforts such as a sound system, driving modes, climate control, and a lift system. The modern-day Countach also gets a healthy dose of carbon fibre in its body and interior. The glass panel in the roof is photochromatic so it can darken up at the press of a button. Of course, each owner can have a bespoke model with lots of personalisation options inside the cabin, so expect to see some cool specifications later on.
The original Countach was more than just a poster child for the Lamborghini brand in the 1970s and 1980s. It was a true rival to the likes of Ferrari in the world of luxury performance but it went about it in a more brutish manner that resonated with a certain audience and still does. It wasn’t art on wheels like the Miura. It was very much in your face and ears.
This is also the first time that the Italian marquee has reused a nameplate for a special edition car. The Countach badge is already an outlier in the company’s history and stablemates as it is not named after a famous fighting bull or bullfighting at all. Its name came from the word contacc of the Piedmontese language that represents an exclamation of astonishment or even admiration. The new one incites a similar response and could be a poster car for the new generation of car enthusiasts. Countach indeed!
Lamborghini will only build 112 units of the 21st Century Countach, a number paying homage to the original Countach’s developmental codename of ‘LP112’ that debuted at the 1971 Geneva motor show. Expect a starting price of a couple of million dollars before personalisation but you can’t have one since it is already sold out. Lamborghini stated customer deliveries will begin from the first quarter of 2022.
What do you make of this tribute to the original Countach? Do you feel Lamborghini should do more remakes or leave the names of legends out of their new projects? Would you agree that Lamborghini took the online trend of “modern renderings” of classic supercars and just decided to make a real one themselves? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog for more cool updates from the car world and you can follow us on Twitter & Instagram (@autoloons).