When CBS sent their New York ’60 Minutes’ TV crew to Sant’Agata, Italy in 1987* to gain an intimate look at the Lamborghini Countach and the factory where it’s built by hand, they probably hadn’t guessed that a certain (then young looking) Valentino Balboni would be launching the grey-suited Morley Safer sourpuss up to 180 mph on public Italian roads… or maybe they did. Either way, it made for a fantastic piece.
Watching this rather refreshingly un-PC 2-part video again, you’re reminded of a time when Italian supercars were constructed and driven by home-bred passion, were dangerous and imbued with near-zero practicality. Just listening to the Marketing Director comparing a white Countach to a virgin, a red one to a mature woman, a black one to a woman of intrigue… People would lose their minds nowadays if a major carmaker uttered something remotely similar in comparison.
It’s also worth noting that Lamborghini didn’t have a swanky test-track to hone the details of their cars on either – Balboni and the army of engineers/test-drivers conducted all testing on the public roads… Brilliantly insane.
So sit back, pour up a cuppa and enjoy the excellent onboard footage and sounds of Countaches being flung sideways through small towns and negotiating the mother-of-all-overtakes at speeds that would surely land you in jail these days… Great nostalgic fun…!
*Despite what the video reads at the beginning, this segment originally aired in 1987.