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Lamborghini Countach (1974 - 1990)

Last updated 11 August 2013

 
5

Buying Guide

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  • Watch out for rust - if a Countach isn't stored proplerly, it will corrode quckly and comprehensively. All body panels are available, with the factory still able to supply them - at a cost.
  • The most rusty areas are the front wings, and the bodykit of S cars and later can hide quite a few evils.
  • It goes without saying that accident damage is an ever-present problem. Fine, if the repairs have been done correctly - but scary if not. Body panel fit quality of factory cars is good, so if you have uneven shutlines, have a good delve into its history.
  • Chassis corrosion is also an issue, so check its spaceframe very closely indeed.
  • Does the aircon work? It needs to, due to the cabin doing a passable impression of a greenhouse on summer days. A good aircon specialiast will find no problems with a Countach, and will often advise to change all hoses as well as fitting a more efficient compressor. Expensive, but worth it.
  • The V12 is strong and surprisingly rugged if looked after properly. And that means specialist care. Check when the valve clearances were last adjusted - it's a big job, and not everyone is that thorough in their servicing regimes.
  • Oil needs changing every 6000 miles, and needs to to be of a high quality semi-synthetic variety. A Lamborghini V12 shouldn't burn oil, and if it does, be prepared for a nasty surprise. Full rebuilds are of the order of £15,000.
  • If there's oil around the sill area, check that the lubricant pipe that runs from the radiator back to the engine is in one piece. It's a £1000 job to replace them - and they do wear out with age.
  • If the engine misfires or coughs, budget to replace the electronic ignition system with something more modern - the Magnetti Marelli module fitted as standard will be worn out by now.
  • Gearbox is rugged, but rumbling bearings are worth listening for. Higher pitched whining will be the worn gears - but you'll be unlucky to encounter this. Budget on £10,000 for a gearbox rebuild.
  • Clutch life is limited - bank on 20-000-40,000 miles, and to replace the whole lot is an engine-out job, which will come to £5000-10,000 depending on the model. 
  • Rear suspension is complex, and costly to rebuiild at around £2000 (because of its rose-joints), but it needs to be tip-top, given the performance potential. Easiest way to tell? Snap oversteer...
  • Brakes are straightforward, but check that the rear discs are okay, as the handbrake has a separate pair of calipers, and they are prone to seizing.
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