Arguably one of the most iconic Countach examples in existence. The white Countach Series III used as the Intervention Car at the Monaco Grand Prix 1981-1983. This incredible example is one of two early Series III “Low Body” cars delivered to the Mimran brothers, owners of Lamborghini between 1981 and 1987. Curated is excited to share the car’s incredible history and document its preservation with the world.
The Formula One Grand Prix of Monaco has been the marquis event on the F-1 calendar for ninety years. The unmatched ambience and history of the Grand Prix which runs through the Principality’s narrow streets past the world-famous Casino, alongside the harbor (which is packed with mega yachts) and the Mediterranean Sea
Is steeped in history. Since 1929, the event has survived essentially intact and has been the mainstay of Grand Prix racing having only been interrupted by the outbreak of World War II.
The Grand Prix of Monaco’s long link to the past, recollections of the glamour days and where the world’s elite gather at the race weekend which runs during the height of the European spring vacation season. The Monaco Grand Prix remains the event to see and be seen attended by royalty, rock stars, actors, models and those who follow them. There are few events in the world which transcend the sport of auto racing the way the Grand Prix of Monte Carlo does and with each new street course event that is announced, the phrase “The next Monte Carlo Grand Prix” is usually mentioned used to hype new venues, such is the impact of this great event in the world of racing.
In 1967, Lamborghini brought the specially prepared Marzal (essentially a modified Espada six-cylinder, one-off concept model) to the Grand Prix weekend. The Marzal was prepared for the Monaco Royal family (Prince Rainier and Princess Grace) to enjoy as a personal car and used later as a course car (or “Intervention Car”). The Mizral featured special paint treatment, “Gullwing” glass doors and huge glass roof so those watching the race from the balconies could see down into the radical four seater’s cockpit.
In the early 80’s, Formula One teams were still very much in the “Ground Effects” era which began with Colin Chapman’s brilliant Lotus 79 which took American racing hero Mario Andretti to the 1978 World Championship. Formula One was flush with manufacturer and team support, each with their own approach to ground effects (essentially an aerodynamic trick which used venturi tunnels underneath the cars generating huge amounts of downforce keeping them glued to the track through the turns) as well as engine configurations; it was a wildly creative time in F-1 history and the fields were filled with twenty-six entries from thirteen teams.
Notably, Ferrari and Ligier-Matra entered V12-engined cars along with a slew of Ford Cosworth V8 powered cars and the emergence of Renault, the French equipe being the first to enter a turbo powered car in Formula One which eventually turned into the “Turbo Era”. Naturally, with the amount of teams, engines, sponsors and their attached media representatives clamoring to Formula One at the time, the emphasis on the Monaco Grand Prix was at a crescendo as no one dared to miss the parties, the race and the post-race parties.
This was not lost on new Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. owners, Jean-Claude & Patrick Minram who took over the company in 1981. Since Lamborghini’s involvement in racing was virtually non-existent, the Minram’s had found a way to showcase their cars at the Monaco Grand Prix without the headaches (and expense) of building a Formula One car, opting instead to have Lamborghini Countach Series IIIs serve as the official event circuit cars. This time, the crowds were treated to a four-car team of V12-engined pace cars which sounded just as good as the competitors on the track.
The Countach LP400 Series IIIs were fitted with huge early 80’s style red and blue flashing police lights and graphics on their sides so they were easily identifiable as course cars. The stickers read “Voiture Officielle” (Official Car), “Intervention Car” (the name which seemed to stick with it over the three years 1981, 1982 and 1983) along with the event’s particular anniversary and date.
The four Countachs appeared at Monaco in different colors, Rosso (#1121244), Azura (#1121344) and Rame Colorado Metallizato, sort of a dark burnt orange, (#1121312) and our Bianco car (#1121314) which is perhaps the best-known example. Each car served time on the track in official and not so official duties pacing the field during caution periods and giving VIPs rides around the circuit during down times while being photographed and documented by attending global media representatives.
All the intervention pace cars were retained by Nuova Automobili F. Lamborghini and were owned by Jean-Claude and Patrick Mimran for an extended period after their appearances at the Monte Carlo Grand Prix events.
This 1981 Lamborghini Countach LP400 Series III (#1121314) may have one of the most interesting and documented histories of any Countach of the era. The car remains finished in the most desirable color combination Bianco white with Blue leather interior.
The car had been completely off the radar and all but forgotten until offered to Curated. It has never been listed on any Lamborghini registry. The engine has not been started since discovered. The car has never been publicly offered for sale (until now) and remains all original.
On arrival at Curated, #1121314 has been undergoing a light restoration to include refreshing the paint, tidying up the interior and engine bay and re-fitted with the signature police lights on the roof. Keep up with the restoration of this important piece of Lamborghini history at wearecurated.com, on Instagram @wearecurated and YouTube @Curated TV.
“At Curated, we do not acquire cars simply for inventory but rather based on what the car is. We love interesting provenance, very low production, very low mileage, very special and often weird cars.”
John Temerian, Jr.