Miura, the Legend that Almost Wasn't

This, you may well know, is the Lamborghini Miura, the first mid-engined super car—the car that put Lamborghini on the map. It was developed in the mid-1960s by a group of young engineers working after hours against the wishes of founder Ferruccio Lamborghini. 

They wanted to develop a car that could be driven on the road and win at the track. They did things a little differently. They put the engine in the middle and because it had 12 cylinders, and wanted to keep the car compact, they put it in sideways. 

By 1965 the engineers had fought hard and won Ferruccio Lamborghini's blessing for the project to proceed as a marketing exercise. The Miura's rolling chassis was shown at that year's Turin Salon—the body had not yet been designed. Despite that, an enthusiastic public began placing orders. A mere four months later, with the Bertone-penned body mounted, the completed car was presented at the 1966 Geneva Motor show to rapturous applause.

When Lamborghini took the car to Monte Carlo later that year for the Grand Prix, crowds choked the square in front of the Hotel de Paris, where the car had been parked, just to get a look at it. 

It had rocketed from a mere marketing exercise to a runaway hit. Today it still remains one of the most significant sports cars of all time. This Petrolicious video highlights what it's like to drive one.  

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