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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

One of Sant’Agata Bolognese’s finest cars

One of the most exclusive Miura still in existence is the Miura P400 Roadster, which was presented on the 1968 Brussels Auto Show. Designed and built by Bertone as a concept prototype, this open version was not just a regular Lamborghini with the roof removed, unlike the 350 GTS presented by Touring a few years earlier, the Miura Roadster was almost completely redesigned, with excellent taste as always.
1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 Roadster. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1O2Z0lG)
The Miura was not a good choice of model for a soft top, the car had well-documented issues with torsional rigidity, removing the roof would just exacerbate that problem. With this in mind, the P400 Roadster had to be completely reworked by Bertone’s Marcello Gandini, who strengthened the chassis and made substantial changes to the rear of the car.
Right side view of 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 Roadster. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1O2Z0lG)
In order to avoid potential turbulence at the proposed top speed of 186 mph the angle of the windscreen was lowered, a spoiler was added at the rear, the engine louvers were taken away, and the exhaust re-routed.
Interior view of 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 Roadster. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1O2Z0lG)
The interior also had to be modified, mainly because the switches from the overhead console found inside the regular Miura had to be installed elsewhere inside the car (they would end up on the central console), and the Bertone steering wheel showed great similarity with the one found inside the Marzal and the Espada prototype ... both built by Bertone too.
A high angle rear view of 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 Roadster. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1HstLwy)
The car was finished in a bright-metallic azure blue shade, while the interior was upholstered in a magnolia (almost white) dye leather (just like on the first 350 GTV in fact). The impact this show prototype had in Brussels and later on in Geneva was massive, but this was to remain strictly a one-off, many owners requested a Miura Roadster from the factory, but Automobili Lamborghini SpA never officially delivered a Miura Roadster or even made a replica, while as mentioned earlier Bertone had never built a top or side windows for this prototype.
When the car sold to ILZRO, the 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 Roadster changed color and name to Zn75. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1O2Z0lG)
This car was sold to the International Zinc and Lead Development Association (ILZRO) who used it as an exhibition tool to demonstrate the properties of the metals they were keen to promote. With help from the factory and Bertone, they changed the car and its color, renaming it to Zn75.
The car passed through several owners after ILZRO until it was restored back to the original livery and specification. It reappeared in public at the 2008 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. In 2013, CNN had this very special Lamborghini valued by Hagerty Insurance ... they came up with a value between $8,000,000 and $10,000,000 making her the most valuable Lamborghini ever. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | LAMBOCARS.COM | DRIVINGLINE]
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