1970 Lamborghini Miura P400 SCoachwork by Bertone
“At over 170mph on the downwind run we still felt in complete control – this with no tacked-on wings or tabs, just an almost unnoticeable rear-deck spoiler. Think of that: wingless stability at speeds not significantly less than Gp 6 or Can-Am cars…” Road & Track’s first test of a Miura P400 S in April 1970
A fresh, highly original example of Lamborghini’s iconic supercar first delivered via Garage Foitek, carefully maintained by marque experts FB Motors with a freshly rebuilt and powerful engine by Edmond Ciclet, coming from long-term (45 years) Swiss family ownership.
Presented in iconic and popular Arancio Miura with its wonderfully preserved original interior of black leatherette with beige velour inserts.
The Lamborghini Miura P400 S
From its launch in 1966, Lamborghini’s sensational Miura was the first true supercar and became an immediate hit. The early cars, though, were very much ‘works in progress’. The factory found that constant improvements and revisions needed to be made to both productionise the car as well as make it more user-friendly.
In April 1968, at the Turin Show, a new version was revealed which addressed many of the original Miura's shortcomings. The P400 S – ‘S’ for spinto, or tuned – was better built, had improved handling and a more powerful, claimed 370bhp engine, and rode on the latest Pirelli tyres.
In the updated cockpit, electric windows replaced wind-ups, some switchgear was redesigned and there was a passenger grab handle and glovebox lid. Most Miuras were still delivered with leatherette (‘Skay’) upholstery (leather was an option) and a P400 S can be recognised by its chrome window surrounds and ‘S’ badge on the boot.
Production of the P400 S ran to 338 examples, from November 1968 to early 1971.
This Motor Car
According to Bertone and factory records, this Miura P400 S was delivered on 14 January 1970 to Zurich’s well-known Lamborghini agent Garage Foitek, founded by ex-GT racer Karl Foitek. It was a mid to late-production example with solid brake discs. Copies of original documentation including the invoice from Automobili Lamborghini SpA to Garage Foitek (6,370,000 lire dated 3/1/1970) and Foitek’s own records confirm the following:
‘Telaio’ (chassis) 4383; ‘Motore’ 30455; ‘Colore esterno’ Arancio; ‘Colore interno’ Nero.
Foitek’s records state that the car was originally ordered for Garage Simplon in Naters, Switzerland. Invoice no. 604 for 45,000 SFR was produced on 22 January 1970 made out to Garage Simplon, though this was subsequently cancelled and replaced by no. 604 N for Herr Karl Ruppen, also of Naters. This time the total was 47,500 SFR, allowing for Foitek’s normal dealer discount of 16,000 SFR and 5,000 SFR credit for slight damage incurred in transit.
Research suggests that Herr Ruppen’s business was property: the Naters-based company Karl Ruppen Immobilienagentur was founded in 1969.
A cancelled Swiss Carte Grise (‘ZH 46324’ dated 14 September 1973) shows the registered keeper as Garage Foitek, Zurich and it was at this time that the father of our Geneva-based client purchased the car, sold as a “one owner” Miura. It was the first of four Miuras he was to own, and the family still cherishes a red P400 S added in 1977. In cooperation with Karl Foitek, one car was generously donated to a museum in Lucerne.
According to a charming notebook of running reports accompanying the car, on 21 July 1984 ‘4383’ had covered 39,176km. On 13 May 1988 this had increased to 39,316km, by 26 May 1990 39,334km and at January 1991 it was 39,361km. With another Miura in his garage, our client kept ‘4383’ in long-term storage, effectively maintaining a ‘time warp’ car from the early 1970s.
On Kidston SA’s recommendation, in February 2012 (at 39,370km) the car was sent to local specialist FB Motors – who maintain Simon Kidston’s Miura SV on a day-to-day basis – for a total restoration. Legendary French Lamborghini expert Edmond Ciclet was entrusted with rebuilding the powerful V12. The original interior – so hard to find nowadays – was cleaned but preserved. The intention was always to replace parts only where absolutely necessary: originality was all.
In total, over a 12-month period the work, which involved some 1,200 hours labour, totalled €195,007. This included everything by FB Motors who supervised and reinvoiced the engine work undertaken in Paris. We have driven the car and it feels one of the fastest Miuras we have experienced thanks to the box-fresh engine rebuilt by the famous French sorcier.
Today, at 41,900km, the car is nicely run in. To find a Miura with just two owners from new is remarkable. Add to that fresh Arancio Miura – one of the most iconic colours – an original interior in remarkably good condition and recent high-quality work by marque experts. Those seeking all that’s best in Lamborghini’s well-rounded Miura P400 S should love this example.