Lamborghini Countach

If the Lamborghini Miura is one of the most beautiful cars ever developed, its replacement, the Countach is one of the most dramatic looking.

It’s very name refers to the expression used by  local Piedmontese men when they see an extremely beautiful woman.

The Countach pioneered the wedge shape for cars and, at one time, its poster could be found on the bedroom walls of many car-mad children.

lamborghini countach lp500s
Lamborghini Countach LP500S – attribution

What You’ll Find On This Page

  • Details about the design, development and specification of the car
  • Motoring videos of the car
  • The role of the car in popular culture
  • Details of the diecast models of the car

Design, Development And Specification Of The Lamborghini Countach

The Countach was designed by Marcello Gandini of the famous Bertone design studio. He also designed the Miura.

The yellow prototype LP500 first appeared at the Geneva Motor Show in 1971 but the LP400 production car, with the Lamborghini 4 litre V12 engine was made and sold in 1974.

Countach P400 attribution
P400 showing off the scissor doors attribution

In 1978 the car was upgrdaed to create the LP400S with wider tyres and wheel arches and an optional rear spoiler to help high speed dynamics.

In 1982 the car got a bigger 4.8 litre engine to become the LP500S.

In 1985 the engine was increased in size again to 5.2 lires and given four values per cylinder (quattrovalvole) to create the 5000QV. Styling changes were made so that the bumpers would comply with US regulations and allowed the car to be sold in the USA. Whether the bumpers stayed on the car after importation is a different matter.

In 1988 a 25th Anniversary version was built.

The most famous modification was when racing team owner Walter Wolf bought an LP400 in 1975 and asked Lamborghini to upgrade the engine to 5 litres. The car previewed the wider tyres, wheel arches and spoilers of the P400S.

LP400 – 150 produced between April 1974 and 1978

Size – length 4140 mm, width 1890 mm and height of 1070 mm with a wheelbase of 2450 mm. Alternatively 162.7 by 74.28 by 42.05 inches with a wheelbase of 96.29 inches

Weight – 1065 kg or 2348 lbs

How Big Is A Mid-Engined Sports Car?

Engine V12 3929 cc producing 375 bhp at 8000 rpm and a torque of 365 Nm at 5000 rpm

More detailed specification

LP400S – 235 produced between March 1978 and 1982

Size – length 4140 mm, width 2000 mm and height of 1039 mm with a wheelbase of 2540 mm. Alternatively 162.7 by 78.6 by 40.83 inches with a wheelbase of 99.82 inches

Weight – 1200 kg or 2646 lbs

Engine V12 3929 cc producing 353 bhp at 7500 rpm and a torque of 363 Nm at 5000 rpm (Yes this version was less powerful than the original despite the car weighing more.)

More detailed specification

LP500S – 323 produced between March 1982 and March 1985

Size – length 4140 mm, width 2000 mm and height of 1070 mm with a wheelbase of 2450 mm. Alternatively 162.7 by 78.6 by 42.05 inches with a wheelbase of 96.29 inches

Weight – 1490 kg or 3285 lbs

Engine V12 4754 cc producing 375 bhp at 7000 rpm and a torque of 302 Nm at 4500 rpm (More bhp this time but less torque and more weight again.)

More detailed specification

LP5000QV – 610 produced between March 1985 and September 1988

Size – length 4140 mm, width 2000 mm and height of 1070 mm with a wheelbase of 2500 mm. Alternatively 162.7 by 78.6 by 42.05 inches with a wheelbase of 98.25 inches

Weight – 1490 kg or 3285 lbs

Engine V12 5167 cc producing 455 bhp at 7000 rpm and a torque of 501 Nm at 5200 rpm (The first significant increase in power and torque since it was introduced in 1974.)

More detailed specification

25th Anniversary – 657 produced between September 1988 and January 1990

Size – length 4140 mm, width 2000 mm and height of 1070 mm with a wheelbase of 2500 mm. Alternatively 162.7 by 78.6 by 42.05 inches with a wheelbase of 98.25 inches

Weight – 1490 kg or 3285 lbs

Engine V12 5167 cc producing 455 bhp at 7000 rpm and a torque of 501 Nm at 5200 rpm

More detailed specification

Motoring Videos For The Lamborghini Countach

Jeremy Clarkson loves the design but hates the driving experience.

Jay Leno liked his 5000QV more. It’s a long video but it’s an excellent “owner’s view” of the car.

The Countach in Popular Culture

Such a dramatic looking car was bound to appeal to Hollywood. Perhaps most famous is The Cannonball Run with an appearance by an Aston Martin DB5 as a bonus.

Here are more film and TV appearances for the LP400, the LP400S, the LP500S, the 5000QV and the 25th anniversary edition.

Here is the anniversary version being destroyed in The Wolf Of Wall Street.

Classic Cars At Auction

In 2014, a Countach was sold for more than $1 million for the first time. A 1975 Countach LP400 “Periscopa” sold for $1.21 million beating the previous record (for the same version of the Countach) of $  836,000.

There are some stunning photos of the car here – CarBuzz.

Models Of The Lamborghini Countach

  • 1:12 – LP500R – Kyosho
  • 1:16 – Tonka
  • 1:18 – LP400 – Autoart
  • 1:18 – LP400 – Kyosho
  • 1:18 – LP500s Walter Wolf – Autoart
  • 1:18 – LP500S  Walter Wolf -Kyosho
  • 1:18 – 5000QV – Bburago
  • 1:24 – LP400 – Fujimi
  • 1:24 – LP500S -Franklin Mint
  • 1:24 – Motormax
  • 1:24 – 5000QV – Bburago
  • 1:43 – LP500S – Autoart
  • 1:43 – Bburago
  • 1:43 -LP500 – Eidolon
  • 1:43 – LP400 Minichamp
  • 1:43 – Prototype – Premium X
  • 1:43 – Del Prado

I’ve made it easy for you to check what models are available at what price from these websites:

eBay

Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Collectable Diecast – a specialist model retailer in America

Please check the search results carefully and change the criteria if necessary.

autoart_lamborghini_countach_lp400-1974-19-small

Above is the Autoart model of the LP400 where you can see the pop-up headlights. In many models, lights don’t pop-up.

Kyosho model of the WW Countach
Kyosho model of the WW Countach

I’m not keen on the black bumpers and wheel arches but it’s a great colour and the spoiler adds drama in the Walter Wolf version.

All doors open from the front of the Countach

The Bburago model of the Countach 5000QV in 1:18 scale is one of the cheapest and most easily found but the doors, front boot and engine cover all open and it’s got the snazzy spoiler again.

Which Model Of The Countach Should You Buy?

The first decision is whether you want one model or you want more than one for your collection.

I deliberately keep my collection small for reasons of cost and space so I know I can only have one. At the moment I’m torn by the elegance of the design of the LP400 before most of the fancy bits were added or the 5000 QV with the wing, the flared wheel arches and the wide tyres etc.

Personally I’m not so keen on the Walter Wolf version with the black wheel arches although I recognise that it has an important place in the Countach history.

Then you need to think about your budget. Are you happy with an economy model or are you prepared to spend £100 to £200 on a Countach model?

Finally, is there a model available new that fits your criteria or will you have to either compromise or wait for something to be released?

Is The Lamborghini Countach One Of The Sexiest Cars Ever Made?

This was the car on the bedroom walls in the second half of the 1970s and the 1980s so I’m expecting it to get plenty of votes. It just squeezes into the first category and most of its time was in the 1975 to 89 period.

What are the sexiest cars from 1960 to 1974? Vote for up to TEN of your favourites. (Blue links take you to detailed pages)

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What are the Sexiest Cars from 1975 to 1989? Vote for up to FIVE of your favourites. (Blue links take you to detailed pages)

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