Practically from Day One, Lamborghini became synonymous with glorious V12s and jaw-dropping exotic styling. Cars like the Miura, LP400 and Espada brought to mind screaming V12 engines coupled with outlandish looks. But in the early 1970’s, the Miura was nearing the end of its run and with the Countach still in development, the only other models available were the big four seat Espada or the 2+2 Jarama. The bosses in Sant’Agata witnessed the success of Ferrari’s Dino 246GT and the Porsche 911 and they wanted in on the action. So they commissioned an all-new entry-level model called Urraco meant to go head-to-head with the 911 and Dino, built around a small V8 engine. The all-new 90 degree V8 displaced just 2.5 liters, but with four belt-driven cams and Weber carburetors, it made a healthy 220 horsepower at 7500 rpm. It was also compact, cleverly designed to accommodate the accessories in the middle of the vee. It was mounted transversely and mated to a 5-speed transaxle. Unlike earlier Lamborghinis, the Urraco eschewed the traditional tubular space frame for sheet unitary construction. Suspension was attached via subframes that were easily removable for service. The new chassis was wrapped in an attractive Bertone body that took a few details from the Miura, but maintained its own unique look. The Urraco was very compact, not much bigger than a Dino, but thanks to the long wheelbase and cab-forward styling, it boasted four seats and a reasonably practical trunk. Performance was on par with its contemporaries, but tall gearing made it slower off the line. The high-revving V8 made up for it with plenty of top-end grunt and the chassis was exquisitely balanced thanks to all-round McPherson struts. But the Lamborghini Urraco struggled to find buyers and only 791 trickled out of the Sant’Agata factory between 1973 and 1979. The Urraco platform was far from a failure, however, living on well into the 1980’s as the 3.0 liter Silhouette and 3.5 liter Jalpa.
Our featured car is a mid-production 1975 Urraco P250 presented in black with tan interior, showing just over 72,000 miles. It comes most recently from a private collection in California where it was stored, and saw very little use. The black paint is average but quite presentable. It has never been restored not needed a restoration. Original Campagnolo wheels are lovely, having been freshly refinished.The interior is in pleasant original condition with very nice brown carpets, a good clean dash, and tan leather seats showing appropriate wear for their age. The correct console is in good condition and this example has factory air conditioning and an aftermarket stereo. There is some wear apparent on the original steering wheel, but it shouldn’t detract from the otherwise well maintained cabin. The car does run but has been in storage for some time and will require a complete overhaul of the fuel and hydraulic systems before putting it into daily use. Once sorted, however, this will certainly make a fine driving example of the rapidly appreciating junior Lamborghini.
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