The ex-Geneva Salon

1972 Lamborghini Miura P400 SV

Coachwork by Bertone

The Lamborghini Miura is revered as one of the automotive world’s icons; it’s the original supercar, which made everything else suddenly look obsolete with its radical mid-engined V12 layout, and it’s been wowing the crowds with its supermodel looks since the moment it first appeared.

Best of all, of course, is the SV version. Early Miuras were rushed into production to satisfy an impatient and demanding clientele; only later during production was care taken to address the car’s shortcomings, reinforcing the chassis, matching revised rear suspension to wider wheels and tyres, tuning the engine and separating the lubrication of the engine and gearbox, whilst generally improving build quality and providing the creature comforts one might expect of what was, back then, a $20,000 car (leather became standard, air conditioning optional).

So the Miura SV is special. It’s rare too, with just 150 ever built- considerably less, for example, than a Ferrari 288GTO, or even a Ferrari 250GT SWB. Of those 150 SVs (of which 21 were US spec cars with legally mandated side lights and other safety/ emissions add-ons), only the last 96 SVs featured split sump lubrication, allowing the engine and gearbox to run different oils and avoiding contamination between the two. Chassis ‘5054’ is one of those split sump cars, but best of all, it’s also one of just two originally delivered in Tahiti Blue and it was the 1972 Geneva Salon de l’Automobile display car.

It didn’t take Swiss importer (and former Ferrari racer) Karl Foitek long to find a buyer, and ‘5054’ spent the next 32 years in the ownership of German enthusiast Wilhelm Hinghaus, occasionally venturing out to events (such as the Lamborghini factory’s 40th anniversary meeting in 2003) and club rallies. Late in 2004 the car changed hands via Simon Kidston at Bonhams in Geneva to a new German owner, a major collector with a penchant for Ferraris, since when it has remained virtually untouched. Still with its original tan leather, and having never been restored or changed from its charismatic and distinctive Blu Tahiti, this is a striking Miura to the ultimate European specification, with air conditioning, its owners handbooks and photographs of its Geneva show appearance.

Footnote: we’re pleased to report that this historic SV has found a new, long term home in Germany where it will be cared for and enjoyed for many years to come. This means both Tahiti Blue SVs have changed hands in the past year after decades in single ownership and both will remain in their native countries.