Ferruccio Lamborghini should be a name that is known by all who consider themselves even remotely related, in anyway, to the car world. Unfortunately the first name of such a legend is not known by many. Today we'll take a moment and a few lines to remember a man that made cars from the soul.
This year marks a century in time since Ferruccio Lamborghini was born. He was born in 1916 and passed away in 1993, but his legacy will be immortal throughout history. Born in a simple and modest family of farmers, Ferruccio learned the value of hard work at an early age, skill that would show later-on in his creations.
In 1948 Ferruccio uses the mechanical skill he gathered, along with the dedication to hard work, and opens Lamborghini Trattori. Trattori translates to tractor, like the one farmers use to plough the earth and what-not. Yes! The father of the Diablo and the Miura used to make tractors in the beginning.
For those who even dare of judging in anyway the cars that Lamborghini has made due to the tractor-history, do keep in mind that the man made 52 tractors A DAY. And spent 1 billion pounds a year on production and advertising for his tractors. Not to mention this was happening in the '50s and '60s, so consider the time-depreciation of money as well. That's what I thought.
Ferruccio Lamborghini, ironically enough, used to own some Ferraris before building his own super-cars. Yes, 'some' as in plural. The story goes that he went to Maranello in 1958 to buy a Ferrari 250GT. Ferruccio loved to race the Bologna-Cantagallo-Firenze, which is a road that stretches for 60 miles across beautiful Italian roads between Bologna and Florence, and soon came to discover that the clutch on his Ferrari was not so sturdy after serious use. Being the self-made man that he is, Ferruccio took it to his tractor factory and had his mechanics improve the reliability of the clutch.
Being proud of the improvement, he drove the car back to Maranello to show Ferrari that his clutch was capable of taking more damage for a longer time. Enzo was a very arrogant man and told Ferruccio: "You can't drive my cars, drive your trattori.". That night, his son Tonino Lamborghini recollects, Ferruccio was so full of anger he decided to use all the money that was supposed to go into producing new tractors and advertising and put it into a car that had to beat Ferrari's.
Tonino Lamborghini: "Cars are like women: If they're nice with no soul, they don't last." (the warrior rules may come in different forms sometime)
In 1963 Automobili Lamborghini is born. Ferruccio called a man named Corrado Carpegianni and told him to assemble a top team of mechanics. The best of the best, from all car-makers. Money was no object. After the team was put together Ferruccio had very exact inputs, he knew exactly what the height of the engine should be as well as the fact that it needed to have dual over-head camshafts, among other fine details. Talk about dedication/obsession.
The car's chassis was displayed in 1965 at Torin, creating a massive stir with the central-traverse V12 engine placement. It also had integrated gears and differential. After seeing the chassis for the first time, Nuccio Bertone walked up to Ferruccio and told him: "I want to dress her.", Ferruccio replied: "Many due, but I believe Bertone is the wright tailor for me." And the Miura soon came to life.
Being the mad-man that he was, Ferruccio put that entire billion pounds into just making the cars, without any money left for advertising. The Lamborghini Miura was sold entierly on word-of-mouth so-to-speak. He was convinced with every particle of his being that if he makes a car that HE likes, the world would love it. And that was enough. The value of hard work also came into good use as Ferruccio would stop and help any worker, personally, in the factory, if a task seemed to prove any challenges.
One hundred years after coming into this world it is safe to say, and I believe I speak for all of us, Ferruccio's legacy brought joy to so many kids that had his creations hanging on their bedroom wall, or on their desktops and smartphones nowadays.To us, big children, as well, being thrilled at the sight and sound of one of his beasts roaring by. Ferruccio has done us all proud and it is our duty to do the same. Remember the man. Remember the name. Pass on the legacy.
In honor of: Ferruccio Lamborghini (April 28th, 1916 - February 20th, 1993)