The last of the three undisputable factory-built Lamborghini Miura SVJs is up for sale but you’ll need a healthy bank balance to buy it…
It’s worth remembering there was only ever ‘one’ Jota, and it was designed and built utilising the self-same basics of a standard Lamborghini Miura, albeit lighter due to the extensive use of riveted aero-industry aluminium-alloy.
Panels were riveted and not welded due to the difficulties in the bonding process surrounding rolled aeronautical Avional. On a mission to achieve significant weight loss, the team decided to strip out the interior, removing any unnecessary equipment. Wider hand-created wheel arches were covered Dunlop racing tyres, headlamps lost those instantly recognisable ‘eyelashes’ and raising mechanism.
An unrestricted exhaust system provided a cacophony of growling as the Italian thoroughbred pushed the limits to around 190mph. Never an official project or even a prototype, the Jota was Lamborghini’s way of pushing the boundaries and being noticed on the big stage.
Fast forward to the evening of 28 April 1971 and prior to being delivered to an excited VIP client Dr Alfredo Belponer, the car was destroyed in a high-speed road accident that happened just outside Brescia. ‘The’ Jota was destroyed.
While the car was completely smashed, the factory followed up with a few ‘lookalikes’ for VIP customers and later modified some of the existing SVs to a greater or lesser degree.
Test driver Cesare Lodi:
“If we had made say 100 normal cars and 25 special cars that would have been as quick as the Jota, I think there would have been a market for it.”
There were only three Jota ‘factory’ conversions with specifications varying across the trio. All three are now referred to as SVJ Miuras on account of their being based on the final SV model. Bodyshells were delivered by Bertone for completion as SVJs in-house at Lamborghini before subsequent delivery to the customer as a new car.
No spec or catalogue exists for the cars but the two-page factory record for the first SVJ built, destined for the Shah of Iran, lists engine modifications as ‘carburettors with competition-type trumpets; quickly removable air filters; front oil radiator; double Bendix Testa Rossa racing fuel pumps; competition exhausts with three-into-one manifolds and four exits with either free-flow or silenced terminals.’
How many real SVJs were built?
Survivors without any modification to either their identity or structure from new, experts agree on the final figure being only three. These are the cars that are confirmed as having left the factory brand-new as SVJs, rather than being converted afterwards – and having remained as such ever since.
This trio of ‘untouched’ SVJs includes the first built, chassis 4934 to the special order of the Shah of Iran; chassis 4990 for Haitian hotelier Albert Silvera; and finally chassis 5090, thanks to the background of its first French owner, forever referred to as ‘The Corsican Car’.
How much will it cost?
The car is being offered by Kidston with any interested parties encouraged to contact them directly.
Images courtesy of Kidston
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