Lamborghini 350 GTV

The beginning of the saga

Presented in October of 1963 during the Turin Motor Show, the 350 GTV was the prototype that gave life to the first car of the Italian brand: the 350 GT.

After being mistreated by Enzo Ferrari, Ferrucio Lamborghini decided to create his first sports car to show that he was not just a farmer without car knowledge. In order to do this, it asked the engineering company Societá Autostar to create a V12 engine with similar displacement to that of the Ferraris (approximately 3 liters), but requested that the new propeller had to be designed exclusively for urban use. Ferrucio did not want to use the same solution as his competitor: race engines adapted for the streets.

The project was handed to Giotto Bizzarrini, an experienced engineer who was a member of the "Gang of Five" (a group of Ferrari's top 5 engineers), who had left the Italian brand in 1961 after Enzo declared that he intended to reorganize the department of engineering. Giotto had been one of the responsible for the development of the famous Ferrari 250 GTO.

The 12-liter, 3.5-liter engine was capable of producing just over 360 bhp at 9800 rpm. However, the high rpm and the dry sump system displeased Ferrucio as they were two characteristics of the racing engines he did not want in his cars. As Bizzarrini refused to modify the project, Lamborghini prohibited the payment of 4.5 million Italian lire (just over $ 2800.00) and a bonus for each horse (bhp) produced above an equivalent engine of Ferrari. The fight was only settled after an Italian court ordered Ferrucio to pay Bizzarrini.

The design of the body was due to a still unknown Franco Scaglione and the chassis created by a team composed by Gian Paolo Dallara, Paolo Stanzani and Bob Wallace.
From conception to manufacturing, it took 4 months of hard work in order to present the prototype during the Turin Motor Show. In October of 1963 was presented to the world the first automobile of Automobili Lamborghini SpA: the 350 GTV.

Due to the problem he faced with Giotto Bizzarrini and to a miscalculation, Ferrucio was obliged to present the 350 GTV without a motor, since the installation of the two carburetors in a vertical position meant that the hood could not be closed. Because of that, the engine was presented next to the car. Legend says that to keep the car at an ideal height from the ground, Ferrucio chose to put ceramic tiles in the engine compartment, keeping it closed throughout the exhibition. Despite this, the specialized press said that the car was "hot."

On 30 October 1963, Ferrucio Lamborghini created Automobili Lamborghini SpA and prepared to begin manufacturing the first car of the brand. To achieve this, it acquired a land of about 46,000 square meters on Via Modena number 12 in the municipality of Sant'Agata Bolognese, only 30 km from the center of Bologna. The choice of the municipality was made based on some characteristics that Ferrucio considered quite interesting, including proximity to the center of the Italian auto industry, tax exemption on the company's profit and the return of 19% interest on the profits deposited in a bank in the region.

Despite good reception by the press, Ferrucio decided that the car should be rebuilt. This time the body was in charge of Carrozzeria Touring of Milan, while the new chassis was made inside the newly constructed factory.

Bizzarrini's V12 engine was used (since Lamborghini had paid for it in court), but underwent some modifications to suit Ferrucio's desire. It started generating only 280 hp, compared to the 360 hp idealized in the original project. The new car was introduced in 1964, during the Geneva Auto Show, and again received rave reviews. In a short time the car, renamed to 350 GT, began to be sold. By the end of that year, 13 units were manufactured. Curiously, Lamborghini sold each of these cars at a loss, as it wanted to keep the price competitive relative to its main competitor: Ferrari.
Between 1964 and 1965 120 units of the 350 GT were sold.

Ficha técnica

Engine: Lamborghini
Displacement: 3464 cm³ | 207.84 cu
Cilinders: 12 cilinders in V at 60 grades
Valves: 24 (2 by cilinder)
Power: 366 cv | 360.85 hp at 9800 rpm
Alimentation: aspirated
Position: longitudinal front

Gearbox: manual de 5 speed
Traction: rear

Max speed: 250 km/h

Front suspension:
Rear suspension:

Front brakes:
Rear brakes:

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