1972 Lamborghini Espada Series II Coupé

Ferruccio Lamborghini’s inaugural production vehicle, the Touring-styled 350 GT, made its debut at the 1964 Geneva Motor Show. Crafted by Italy’s esteemed automotive engineers, it boasted a magnificent 3.5-liter, four-cam V12 engine designed by Giotto Bizzarrini and housed within a chassis conceived by Gianpaolo Dallara.

With its four camshafts and fully independent suspension, the 350 GT outperformed contemporary offerings from Ferrari. However, to rival Ferrari’s larger models, Lamborghini introduced the 4.0-liter 400 GT 2+2 in 1966, catering to the demand for a nominal four-seater. Despite being a newcomer in the automotive industry, Lamborghini swiftly dispelled any doubts about its capability to compete with the world’s finest Gran Turismos.

Named after a matador’s sword, the Espada was unveiled at the 1968 Geneva Motor Show. Styled by Bertone’s Marcello Gandini, creator of the iconic Miura, the Espada bore resemblance to the rear-engined Marzal, albeit with its 4.0-liter, four-cam V12 engine positioned upfront. With 325bhp, the Espada boasted a top speed of 150mph, utilizing Islero running gear on a platform-type semi-monocoque chassis.

The Series II Espada, introduced in January 1970, offered an additional 25bhp, reaching a top speed of 155mph. It also featured an improved dashboard layout and optional power-assisted steering. The Series III, launched in late 1972, incorporated standard power steering, enhanced brakes, minor suspension upgrades, and a restyled front grille. Production ceased in 1978 after 1,217 Espadas were built, preserving its legacy as one of the most imposing and distinctive cars of its time.

Photos by Weekend Heroes courtesy of RM Sotheby’s