The Jota-inspired Miura hot rod
This Lamborghini Miura P400 S started life as a regular, early production car. Finished in Blu Notte with Pelle Nera, it was delivered in November 1969 to the Turin concessionaire for Lamborghini, Lamborauto, and registered in the agent’s name. After numerous owners during the first 5 years of its life the car was purchased by Giovanni Sotgiu of La Spezia, in March 1975. At this point the history of the car took a dramatic turn. Sotgui was a BMW dealer in Milan and he and Milanese businessman Walter Ronchi would often buy cars together. The pair, with Italian F1 fixer and former racing driver Franco Galli, turned to two former Sant’Agata workers to transform the P400 S into a Jota-inspired Miura hot rod. The cost of the work came to some 4,500,000 lire.
Ronchi had once owned the legendary one-off Jota, Lamborghini engineer Bob Wallace’s famous creation. That car was destroyed in an accident in April 1971, after Ronchi sold it but before it was delivered to a new home. The intention with this Miura P400 S was to make a ‘pseudo SVJ’, with a tuned engine, free-flowing exhausts and body modifications that included a full-width front spoiler and Plexiglas-covered headlamps.
The result was the ‘Millechiodi’ (‘1000 nails’), named after its riveted construction in the manner of the factory SVJs and the long-lost Jota. It was painted British Racing Green and trimmed in black leather. The car was also used by Galli for hair-raising drives on northern Italian Autostrada, visiting Monza and even, as he has said, giving actress Brigitte Bardot a lift… By the late-1970s it was for sale and displayed in the window of Autoelite, the specialist dealer on the Viale Cenisio in Milan.
In April 1979 the car was sold to veteran collector Aldo Cudone of Padova, northern Italy. Cudone was a wealthy collector with an impressive stable of impeccably maintained Ferraris and Lamborghinis. The price paid was 30,000,00 lire and when Ubaldo Sgarzi of Lamborghini inspected it before purchase he declared it to be in ‘as new’ condition.
‘As new’ or otherwise, some 10 years later Cudone sent the car to local race preparation company of note, Michelotto, for a mechanical rebuild. Working closely with Ferrari, Padova-based Michelotto helped develop the F40 and built the F40 GTE and 333 SP racing cars. Modena region Ferrari experts Autosport handled the bodywork, repainting it red. From then until Cudone’s death the car was stored in Padova, largely unused. In May 2001, Cudone’s collection was disposed of at auction in Monaco. The car was bought by a Swiss collector and was returned to Autosport for corrective work, finishing in 2003, then delivered to storage in the UK.
Last sold in 2015, it was despatched to the best-in-the-business craftsmen of the Modena region for a total, nut-and-bolt restoration to as-converted for Walter Ronchi in the mid-1970s. Carrozzeria Cremonini handled the bodywork, the car was retrimmed by Interni Auto and Gatti attended to the electrics. Ex-Lamborghini family concern Top Motors looked after the engine and running gear, rebuilding the V12 to 4,100cc with bigger pistons and valves, more radical camshafts and a Jota-like exhaust.
This totally unique 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 S 'Millechiodi' is currently available from Kidston. For more details, click on the link below.