Lot 4

Las Vegas

1984 Lamborghini Countach 5000 S by Bertone

Delivered new to Ralph Lauren

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$830,000 USD | Sold

United States Flag | Las Vegas, Nevada

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language
Chassis No.
ZA9C00500DLA12657
Documents
US Title
  • Acquired new by Ralph Lauren, as confirmed by accompanying documentation
  • Never publicly offered for sale, having been under private ownership with its second caretaker since 1986
  • Showing 17,413 actual km (10,820 mi) at time of cataloguing
  • One of just 321 LP 5000 S examples produced and one of only 38 delivered new to the U.S. market
  • Manufactured December 1983; very well preserved and maintained in highly original condition, finished in Rosso over Nero leather
  • Offered with original New York State title, insurance, and other paperwork documenting Mr. Lauren’s ownership
  • Full paint correction and comprehensive professional detailing, including undercarriage and engine bay, in preparation for the sale
  • Accompanied by original owner’s manual, tool kit, and service and parts invoices from 2003 to 2021

The quintessential dream car of its era, the Lamborghini Countach defined an entire generation of automotive enthusiasm and forever recast what a supercar could and should be. It fully embraced the radical thinking and spirit of revolution that defined its forbear, the inimitable Miura, but rejected the familiar sculpted and curvaceous styling in favor of a striking wedge shape with pop-up headlights and outrageous scissor doors. Clean, crisp, and angular, the design study sent shockwaves worldwide when unveiled at the 1971 Geneva International Motor Show, bringing the groundbreaking styling elements of the Alfa Romeo Carabo and Lancia Stratos Zero concepts to a production car for the first time. The Countach caused a sensation even before its raw 375-horsepower performance had been experienced on the road.

Like the Miura, the Countach would benefit from various revisions throughout its life, with ever more advanced and powerful iterations continually pushing the envelope of performance. But while the game-changing Miura remained on sale for little more than eight years, its successor would become one of Lamborghini’s most long-lived supercars, flying the flag for the legendary automaker from Sant’Agata Bolognese until 1990.

So great was the Countach’s appeal that it drew the attention of American fashion designer Ralph Lauren, who acquired the beautifully preserved example offered here on 30 December 1983, flush from his burgeoning clothing empire, which had just expanded into a range of home goods and accessories that very year. Purchase documents on file surviving from Mr. Lauren’s ownership indicate that he acquired the Countach, chassis number 12657, from Motormint Vehicle Sales Inc. of Englishtown, New Jersey, which was the importing dealer, according to the chassis plate installed after the car was officially imported to the United States. The original title document on file, dated 1 January 1984, indicates Ralph Lauren Design Studio as the owner. On the back of this document is what appears to be Mr. Lauren’s signature in the “seller’s signature” field of the “Transfer by Owner” section. A surviving New York State Insurance Identification Card shows that the car was insured to Ralph Lauren Design Studio effective 3 January 1984.

In 1986, a private collector acquired Mr. Lauren’s Lamborghini and became its second owner, cherishing the car in obscurity for nearly 40 years, until selling it to the consignor in October of 2023. Parts and service invoices from 2003 to 2021 attest that the Countach was well cared for and fastidiously maintained. Furthermore, mileage logs on the service invoices and a signed mileage statement indicate the 17,413 kilometers (10,820 miles) showing on the odometer at the time of cataloguing to be actual.

Lamborghini produced only 321 examples of the Countach LP 5000 S and only 38 are believed to have been delivered new to the U.S. market. Superseding the previous Countach LP 400 S in 1982, the LP 5000 S features a 4,754-cubic-centimeter version of Lamborghini’s mighty V-12 engine paired with a five-speed manual transmission. With increased displacement and breathing through six Weber 45 DCOE carburetors, the most noticeable change was not the power output, which remained at 375 horsepower, but how it was delivered, arriving 1,000 rpm earlier. Other updates to the LP 5000 S that clearly distinguish it from predecessors include a revised interior and distinctive flared wheel arches, which housed the widest wheels ever fitted to a production car up to that point.

Now presented in what is believed to be highly original condition with its factory-correct color scheme of Rosso over Nero leather, it has been fully and professionally detailed in preparation for its first time ever being offered at auction. In addition to the documentation proving Mr. Lauren’s ownership, it is accompanied by its original manuals with leather pouch, tool kit, and service and parts invoices. One of the most extreme supercars ever created—and once a cornerstone of Mr. Lauren’s noted car collection, among the most highly regarded in the world—this very special Countach is finally ready to take center stage after slumbering comfortably and discretely for so many years in cherished private ownership, eager to be ushered into the next chapter of its life with a new and fortunate caretaker.