One of the most famous if not legendary people in Lamborghini history in the United States of America has passed away on February 14. 2014 … Al Burtoni, owner of California based Milano Imports (Gilroy to be exact) and creator of some of the most impressive Lamborghinis in the past, keep in mind his workshop has been in business since 1968, making it the oldest Lamborghini sales and service point in the USA.
Next to Milano Imports he also owned V/12 Engineering … and here things get really interesting, when Automobili Lamborghini SpA created the limited edition Diablo SE30 model, more specifically the race inspired Diablo SE30 JOTA upgrade kit Al Burtoni took that idea to the next level, creating a one of a kind Lamborghini Diablo with a massive power output of 680hp … Burtoni called it the Diablo Jota Americana, finished in a very special paint combining purple and silver metallic paint over a purple and grey alcantara interior … you either love it or hate it, but this Diablo (#ZA9DU07P5MLA12182) is still a very special, and fast super car today.
Before he created his very own Diablo Jota Americana edition Al Burtoni made an even more impressive car … a full blown Salt Flats race car based on a Countach … initially chassis #112.1002 was a 5.2 Liter Quattrovalvole but after Mr Burtoni modified it heavily this Bull managed to reach a top speed of 201.793 Mph … this set a record for ‘C’ modified sports cars at that time … the record would stand for ten years after that.
The Diablo Jota Americana was based on a 1991 Diablo 2wd model, many years later Al Burtoni performed a similar modification on a 2001 Diablo VT 6.0 model, finished in bright orange metallic this time, this more recent Diablo also received the dual air intakes on the engine cover to feed air onto a pressure plate … additionally a race style rear wing and chromed, cross-spoke wheels completed the package … this specific car was ofter seen being driven by Mr Al Burtoni himself.
In mid 2011 a member of Lamborghini-talk.com, Ravill was able to photograph a part of the collection of the late Mr Al Burtoni showing an impressive blue metallic Diablo VT 6.0 with ‘The Godfather’ script on the side, next to it a stunning Diablo Roadster finished in the special 30th Anniversary Lavender shade … and the orange Diablo Jota 6.0.
In fact the late Al Burtoni was also nicknamed ‘The Godfather of Lamborghini’ … he has been in business since 1968, during that time a large number of Raging Bulls passed his workshop, the massive amount of experience he gathered during that time meant there weren’t many issues with classic Lamborghini like the Miura, Countach or Diablo he didn’t encounter, and solved before … in fact back in 1984 Al Burtoni briefly took leadership of the official Lamborghini Club of America for 11 months.