Basking in the Purity of the World’s Last Manual Lamborghini
The manual gearbox is a lost art, a forgotten skill. Like most other manufacturers, Lamborghini has nixed the manual transmission from its lineup entirely. But before it did, the company put one in what is widely agreed upon as being the finest of the modern Lambos: the 2014 Gallardo LP560-2. Last week I had the chance to get up close and personal with one of these special machines. From the moment I walked up to it, I was enamored with its angles. Though it's not as clean and sophisticated as the new Huracan, something about this Gallardo just...works. Maybe it was the paint job. Lamborghini calls the pearlescent white paint "Bianco Opalis," but I've taken to calling it "The Lord's Laquer." It's hard to emphasize just how deep the paint was, and how hard of a time I had taking my eyes off it for more than a few moments. White works on most cars, but something about this color in particular had me flashing back to the days of the Countach, the same white exterior gracing a cliche poster on my bedroom wall. RELATED: See Photos of the 2013 Lamborghini Gallardo LP570-4 Squadra Corse
After I was finally able to take my eyes off the exterior, I took to running my grubby paws on the Nero Alcantara that covers nearly every inch of the cabin. The steering wheel is perfectly chunky with a carbon fiber insert, and falls into hand exactly how you imagine it would.
The Alcantara shows minimal wear, and doesn't feel rough as it has in other cars I've experienced in the past. Part of that has to do with it being a single owner car, and having just 4,500 miles to its name. But also—authentic Alcantara is far more durable than most people give it credit for, this being a prime example of that.
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This rear-wheel-drive spaceship packs a 5.2-liter V10 that's mounted right behind the one-piece bucket seats where you'll definitely enjoy spending some time. There's 552 horsepower and 395 lb-ft of torque at your disposal, and it all comes to life via a six-speed, gated manual transmission. A profoundly satisfying click makes every gear change an occasion, and, combined with everything else that makes a Lamborghini a Lamborghini, that auditory treat alone more than justifies the $245,000 asking price on Dietz Motorcraft.
Sure, you can get more car for less money, but you can't put a price on the experience of rowing your own gears through the aluminum gates. Lamborghini only built thirty of these 50th Anniversary Gallardos with the six speed, and twenty five of them came to the United States.
They truly don't make 'em like this anymore, and nor will they in the future. A manual transmission in a Lamborghini is a thing of the past, and one that you absolutely need to experience for yourself. May I humbly suggest that you do so in a LP560-2 50th Anniversary Edition, the only modern Lamborghini that's a true "driver's car."
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Photo Credit: Visual Vocab for BoldRide