In 1988, Lamborghini built the Countach Anniversario, to celebrate the 25 years of the founding of Automobili Lamborghini SpA, in 1993 Lamborghini again designed and built a special car to celebrate their 30th anniversary, the Diablo SE30 was presented during the third Lamborghini Day in September 1993 in Sant'Agata, surrounded by about 140 other Lamborghini's from all over the world.
The Diablo SE, where SE stands for Special Edition, could easily be called the sportiest car Lamborghini built in a long time, mainly because the SE was meant to be entered in GT-championships around the world by installing the JOTA upgrade kit on it.
That is why a lot of weight was saved in the design; the side windows were replaced by synthetic glass and only a small portion of them opened by turning a knob inside the door, no more power windows for the Diablo SE.
The rest of the interior was completely race orientated, but it still looked rather elegant.
The seats and the dashboard received a standard upholstery in blue Alcantara leather, which was combined with carbon fiber, white dials and perforated, aluminum pedals.
The dashboard came straight out of the VT, but in the SE, there was no air-conditioning, no radio nor CD-player, but in their place, you would find a red button, which activated an automatic fire extinguisher system underneath the engine hood, in case it got too hot.
There was also a system installed to adjust the anti-roll bars from inside the cockpit, by using the right setting you could increase the speed in a turn with 2 to 3 Km/h.
The small Carbon Fiber seat would grab you and thanks to the special upholstery, you would not move an inch in them because the four-point harness with 30th anniversary logo's held you very tight. The steering wheel was also modified, it became smaller and the bottom part of it was flat, to ease the entry into the car, but since the power-steering had been abandoned, the small steering wheel wasn't easy to turn, although the badge used on this new steering wheel was exactly the same as the one used inside the 350 GTV thirty years ago.
On the outside, things also changed a lot; some visible, but other changes were less well visible. Most of the bodywork was still made of aluminum panels, but several parts were made of Carbon Fiber, like the side-air-intakes and surrounding bodywork.
The front spoiler was redesigned, now a little deeper, with two new, bigger air-intakes with a horizontal grill in them. This spoiler was also a bit wider than the original one to counter-act possible turbulence at the front wheels. The side air intakes now used two vertical ducts to lead the airflow to two bigger oil-coolers.
A rear spoiler was standard issue on the SE, the spoiler drops toward the bodywork at both sides, while the central part of it was adjustable, for exact down force at high speeds. The rear engine hood was also redesigned, and now resembled the one used for the Miura during the Sixties. To finish the exterior restyling, the rear bumper/spoiler received another profile, now incorporating the rear-backup light and the fog-light, while the grill between the rear lights held the raging bull emblem and a 30th anniversary logo.
When you opened the engine hood, you were in for a surprise, the top of the engine was finished in black and gold-color, but the best was still to come.
Thanks to lowering the weight of the engine by using magnesium for the intake manifolds and the modified cylinder heads, reprogramming the Lamborghini LIE electronic injection and the use of a free-flow exhaust system, this car pumped out 525 Bhp at 7000 rpm. This power increase, together with a 125 Kg decrease in weight, gave the new Diablo SE staggering performance figures, 0-100 Km/h. in only 4.0 sec and a top speed of 331 Km/h.
The electronically adjustable suspension from the VT had been abandoned on this pure sports car, and a 'normal' suspension was used, they even managed to improve the Diablo road holding capabilities. On the actual production Diablo SE, Lamborghini would include a standard traction control system with four settings, one of which could simply turn the system off.
Automobili Lamborghini only offered the rear-wheel drive version in this special edition and the very big tires at the rear became even bigger. Lamborghini had OZ-Racing, their rim supplier, design an all-new wheel in one piece with the same five-hole design as the original three-piece rim, but this time the rims were made of an ultra-light magnesium compound, and the rear ones became a whopping 18-inch now, mounted with Pirelli P Zero 335/30 ZR 18 tires, the front dimensions of rim and tire remained the same as on the VT-version.
Still there was no ABS system on the Diablo, but the disk brakes became bigger and were perforated.
Probably the only setback of the Diablo SE could be found in the exterior color, the prototype was finished in a strange, new Lavender metallic color, it looked good, but a real 'race' Lamborghini should be finished in Rosso Corsa or Fly Yellow according to some fans, however, this very special color made the Diablo SE30 look even more exotic than any other Diablo model made.
The Diablo SE was available for delivery starting from June 1994, but you had to be fast, only 150 SE would be built and about 15 of these were later converted to Diablo Jota specifications (see the JOTA page on this site).
Sure, the Diablo SE30 had a list price about 15% higher than the Diablo VT, but it was a rock solid investment, the price only went up once they were all sold. The very last Diablo SE 30 was finished in white and went to a Middle Eastern dealer and actually left the factory in Italy on November 26 1995.
The images of the metallic green SE on this page show a rather special car, this one was finished in a custom ordered color scheme. Automobili Lamborghini SpA offered their customers this exclusive service called 'Carte Blanche', your car could be finished in any color available and any interior finish was possible, normally the SE30 interior was finished in a magnificent Alcantara, but this specific car had beautiful Italian leather upholstery, note that most SE that were ordered by US customers were also finished with a leather interior instead of the luxurious alcantara.
Note that a German tuner, Rogalla, actually offered a special Turbo Charger for the Diablo SE models, boosting power to a healthy 625 Hp it would push the Special Edition Diablo to a top speed of 343 Km/h, the entire installation would be done at the Rogalla workshop and could take about three to four weeks to mount, a rather interesting alternative to the very 'hot-headed' Jota upgrade kit from the factory.
We've put together a list of the cars that participated in the Grande Giro, over 350 entries listed, most of them captured on photo.
(added on May 18. 2013)
The 2013 edition of the famous Viva Italia event at the TT Circuit in Assen, the Netherlands will celebrate 50 years of Lamborghini, so expect a lot of Bulls.
(added on May 16. 2013)
The official intro movie on the Egoista shown by Automobili Lamborghini SpA during the unveil in Sant'Agata
(added on May 14. 2013)
Official Lamborghini footage on the final day of the Grande Giro 50th Anniversary event including the unveil of the Egoista
(added on May 13. 2013)
The real Lamborghini Egoista unveiled on Saturday will probably never be sold, but there is another option ... Looksmart will release a scale model
(added on May 13. 2013)
January 1. 2010
Text © Mark Smeyers
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