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The first time I attended Monterey Week back in the 1990s I decided I had to determine my personally most visually satisfying car. I can’t remember the runner-ups, but I remember the winner — it was the Muira.
Lamborghini’s Muira is also a highly significant car in sports car history…….shaking the foundations at Ferrari with a competitive V12, and for the first time for a production model, a V12 engine placed amidships. Recently collectors have also recognized the styling and engineering significance of the Muira, pushing values for top examples beyond $2.5 million. I stand resolutely behind my choice of the Muira as Italy’s representative in the Seven Nations-Seven Cars exhibit at the Quail Gathering in Monterey.
Giotto Bizzarrini is credited with the V12 engine design, while Bertone’s Marcello Gandini penned the body. Claimed dry weights for the 1966-69 Muira are in early Porsche 911 weight territory at just 2480 lbs, and for the later S and SV almost 20% more at 2862 lbs. The production run was roughly 750 cars.
The Portoro black marble with characteristic flame-like gold veining screamed “Lamborghini” at me. My stone sculptor friend, Michael Binkley knows the quarry of origin near La Spezia on the Italian North West coast. When he last visited, that La Spezia quarry was both closed and mothballed. (I have one more unmilled billet of this stone for some lucky client).
Muiras often had something of a two tone color scheme. The gold inlay accents I used on The Hen used are patterned after a Muira that was for sale from Axel Schuette’s Fine Cars in Germany.
Art History buffs may propose another theory as to why I’ve entitled this sculpture “The Hen”.