- One of 23 ‘Interim’ 400 GT models produced
- California car from new; single ownership since 1980
- Ground-up restoration by Lamborghini specialist Gary Bobileff
- Numbers-matching 4.0-liter V-12
Lamborghini’s first production car, the 350 GT, was the brainchild of two of Italy’s most illustrious auto designers. With an engine designed by Giotto Bizzarrini, fresh from Ferrari, and a chassis engineered by Gianpaolo Dallara, the 350 GT needed only Touring’s superleggera bodywork to be worthy of the charging bull. Production of the 350 GT took place from 1964 to 1966, during which 120 examples were produced. The 400 GT’s development began in 1965, when Lamborghini sought to increase both the power and the interior room of the 350 GT. The initial step was to fit a larger engine to the 350 GT, and thus the ‘Interim’ 400 GT was born.
The two-seat 400 GT features a 320 bhp, 4.0-liter V-12, essentially the same 350 GT engine but with a longer stroke, backed by a fully synchromesh five-speed transmission. The combination of the 350 GT’s sleek two-seat platform with the more powerful 4.0-liter engine made this an impressive offering, though sadly temporary. Lamborghini ultimately changed the body design to accommodate a more spacious four-seat interior and began production on the 400 GT 2+2, ending the ‘Interim’ production after just 23 cars.
This stunning 400 GT is one of those 23 examples produced with the 4.0-liter engine but without rear seats, like its predecessor the 350 GT. The 400 GT benefitted from Lamborghini’s brand-new and silent five-speed transmission, replacing the 350 GT’s noisy ZF unit. Additionally, the 350 GT’s Salisbury differential was updated with a new Lamborghini differential.
Boasting California history from new, this 400 GT was distributed through Bob Estes, the Lamborghini West distributor at the time. It appeared on a period postcard promoting the model wearing its Rosso Alfa paint and black California dealer plates. Well cared for by its current California-based owner since 1980, this rare Lamborghini has been driven sporadically, but has remained mostly out of sight, residing in the same collection for four decades and rarely if ever being shown. Finished in Rosso Alfa over tan leather, it was acquired from a previous owner in Orange County, California. Completely original at the time of purchase, the 400 GT retains its matching-numbers 4-liter V-12 and has more recently been the subject of a ground-up restoration by noted Lamborghini expert Gary Bobileff, who has maintained this great car since 1976. Restoration receipts and photos are available.
A grand touring car created in the great Italian tradition, this exceptional example of early Lamborghini style and engineering excellence is an ideal choice for touring, concours exhibition, or to enhance any collection of fine motorcars.