Ferruccio Lamborghini originally built tractors. He owned a few Ferraris. His Ferraris had inferior clutches. He brought up his dissatisfaction to Enzo Ferrari. Ferrari told him “How dare a tractor make tell me how to make a sports car.” Angered by Ferrari, Lamborghini toke Ferrari’s chief mechanic and started making his own cars. Lamborghini believed that grand tourers should have high performance, good ride quality, and a quality interior. He created his own car company and the first car with the Lamborghini badge is the Lamborghini 350GTV, which would be the prototype and forerunner for the 350GT, Lamborghini’s first production model. Lamborghini first revealed the car in March of 1964 at the Geneva Auto Show and went into production in May 1964. Production ended in 1966 with 135 350GTs being made.

I recently saw the 350GT at the October 2011 edition of Houston Cars and Coffee. There was a good size crowd around the car. This is a good looking car. When you look at a Gallardo or a Diablo or a Miura, it is hard to imagine that those three rear-mid-engine cars are descendants of a front-engine, rear-wheel drive grand tourer. Lamborghini has not made a front-engine car since the Espada’s production run ended in 1978. Modern Ferraris share some characteristics of classic Ferraris. No modern Lamborghini looks anything like the 350GT. It is a shame because I believe that Lamborghini should make a front-engine car with some styling characteristics of the 350GT to compete with Ferrari front-engine grand tourers.

The 350GT is powered by 3.5L V12 engine, paired with a five-speed manual transmission, that produces 280 hp and 241 lb-ft of torque. It goes from 0 to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds and reaches a top speed of 156 mph. In 1965, a new 350GT cost $13,900, which was expensive for that time. The current value for the 350GT is in the range of $45,000 and $89,700. That is very low considering that the 350GT was the first Lamborghini produced.

The 350GT has been featured on Jay Leno’s Garage. Great Cars, Top Gear, Cars.TV, Sports Auto: Lamborghini-Essais, and Rides have all featured the 350GT.

The 350GT is a great classic car. It is a must have in any car collection. It is the first Lamborghini so any Lambo collector should not pass on this car. It is also a great addition for any Italian car collection. It is a classic grand tourer and should be treated with care and respect, but it also should be driven for weekend cruising. The Diablo, Gallardo, Miura, and Aventador would not have existed if not for the 350GT.

CarJunkie

Photo taken from a digital camera.

Check out more car articles at http://carjunkie713.blogspot.com

Originally written on October 1, 2011

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