Ferruccio Lamborghini the founding father of the Lamborghini bequest is an example of how motivation could possibly be derived from anger and insult. He was a super wealthy tractor manufacturer post
World War II. So he had it all – privilege, access to luxury and more importantly the ownership of super cars back then which only a very few from the elite class could imagine affording. Being an automobile aficionado himself he had some respect for Ferrari initially and had multiple Ferraris. However he always encountered issues with the interior clutch in any given Ferrari he owned. Addressing this to Enzo Ferrari yielded a contrary result to what Ferruccio had expected. In fact this is what Enzo had to say :
‘Lamborghini, you may be able to drive a tractor but you will never be able to handle a Ferrari Properly.’
This remark left Ferruccio furious and that’s when he decided he would make the perfect car.
Thus born was Lamborghini Automobili in 1963. Lamborghini has come a long way ever since then. Almost every lambo is christened with bull names that survived bull fights. The Murciélago was a bull that survived 90 sword strikes.
The Countach is one of the most iconic cars Lamborghini has ever made with radical aerodynamics. It breaks the tradition of the Lamborghini line up, being named by its designer Marcello Gandini.
Here’s an interesting account from the designer himself –
“When we made cars for the car shows, we worked at night and we were all tired, so we would joke around to keep our morale up. There was a profiler working with us who made the locks. He was two meters tall with two enormous hands, and he performed all the little jobs. He spoke almost only Piedmontese, didn’t even speak Italian. Piedmontese is much different from Italian and sounds like French. One of his most frequent exclamations was ‘countach’, which literally means plague, contagion, and is actually used more to express amazement or even admiration, like ‘goodness’. He had this habit. When we were working at night, to keep our morale up, there was a jousting spirit, so I said we could call it Countach, just as a joke, to say an exaggerated quip, without any conviction. There nearby was Bob Wallace, who assembled the mechanics – we always made the cars operational. At that time you could even roll into the car shows with the car running, which was marvelous. So jokingly I asked Bob Wallace how it sounded to an Anglo-Saxon ear. He said it in his own way, strangely. It worked. We immediately came up with the writing and stuck it on. But maybe the real suggestion was the idea of one of my co-workers, a young man who said let’s call it that. That is how the name was coined. This is the only true story behind this word.”
Countach was real popular throughout the 80s. The V-12 370 hp futuristic looking supercar was the dream of many youngsters at the time. It was also the car that gave birth to the “Italian Wedge” design that later inspired many other supercars.
Founder, Content Creator at The Krankshaft.