The late Ferruccio Lamborghini founded Automobili Lamborghini SpA back in 1963, in a matter of years he made his new car company an household name in the automotive world with the legendary Miura, the most innovative car on the market, succeeded by the space age Countach and later on the famous Diablo … sadly by the time the Diablo hit the market Chrysler owned the company and Ferruccio was enjoying his retirement.
In 1993, only two months before his 77th birthday, Ferruccio Lamborghini passed away in Perugia, Italy … but his legacy would never be forgotten, his son Tonino made sure about that when he opened the Centro Polifunzionale Ferruccio Lamborghini in Dosso only two years later, in 1995.
This family owned museum would display all of the industrial milestones the late Ferruccio Lamborghini managed to reach during his life, tractors, oil burners, cars, boats and even a helicopter was shown together with a massive collection of photos and other automobilia related to Ferruccio … it soon became obvious this stylish location was just too small to continue housing the ever growing collection … so in early 2014 the entire collection was moved to the Tonino Lamborghini Forum in Funo di Argelato, a 5 minute drive from the Interporto exit on the A13 highway Bologna-Padova.
The Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini is now a massive, modern complex that can house the collection for many years to come, there is ample space to continue growing … while the current display is already totally mind-blowing if you ask me … just about everything is on display now, and all items have enough space to really admire them from every angle, perfect lighting and an ideal setting to keep the legacy alive.
There is a total of 9,000 square meters available to Fabio Lamborghini and Tonino Lamborghini to show just what Ferruccio has meant to the automotive world, a complex that has a very impressive book shop, a lounge bar and ample areas for events, exhibitions or business meetings. Specifically the book shop is a dangerous space for Lamborghini enthusiasts like us, naturally there are very interesting books like the special Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini book, which is a must have to be honest. But the shop also offers a very nice selection of goods from Tonino Lamborghini … like the stylish watches, the amazing perfume bottles … and let’s not forget the clothing in the fashion range with the Tonino Lamborghini label … a place to spend some extra time … and money.
Walking through the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini you are quickly emerged into the world that conveys the history of the Bull … a journey that will take you along all of the industrial items related to Ferruccio Lamborghini, including his personal, red Miura SV, the similar shade Countach Quattrovalvole and even a yellow Lamborghini Diablo … a car he admired but was only involved with at a very early stage as Chrysler owned the company when the Diablo was unveiled … still Ferruccio was impressed with the new V12 so she also deserves a spot in his museum.
This museum still holds the helicopter prototype, which was hung from the ceiling in the old Centro in Dosso … now it stands on the floor making her even more impressive, the upholstery on the seats shows small Raging Bulls, next to it the engine proudly shows off the innovative design from the time.
A massive amount of photos and personal items are scattered around the walls and in separate display areas, like a small workshop holding a tractor and a workbench … or the office that has been setup with furniture and equipment from the Sixties and Seventies … the time Ferruccio himself could be seated behind this desk thinking about the Miura that made his name a living legend, or the Countach that would take the automotive world by storm for being so futuristic, nothing else on the market could even come close at that time.
We all know Ferruccio Lamborghini had Riva create a one of a kind Aquamara boat in 1968 just for him, naturally boasting two massive V12 engines instead of the regular V8 units from GM, unfortunately this specific Riva Aquamara was sold in 1989, so it is no longer owned by the Lamborghini family … however after it was acquired by a collector in 2010 this amazing boat was painstakingly restored over a period of two years … the permanent collection at the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini shows a stunning scale model of this Riva hull number 278 … the real boat did make a visit to the museum by the way, but it is not part of the permanent display.
A boat that is constantly shown inside the museum now is the massive, red painted offshore powerboat … Lamborghini marine engines are world famous for powering many championship offshore powerboats over the years, and this red unit was a functional winner back in her heydays … today the UIM Class 1 Achilli Motors number 103 from the early Nineties is part of the collection (she used to be outside in Dosso due to lack of space being an 11.6m long catamaran hull) and is accompanied by a few different samples of marine engines made in Sant’Agata … keep in mind boats like this would travel at speeds over 200km/h … on water!
Ferruccio Lamborghini started making some serious money after he founded Lamborghini Trattori SpA in 1949, building one single tractor each day … by 1958 a total of 1,500 tractors left the gates in Cento each year … ten years later a massive 5,000 units were built each year so in 1971 Lamborghini moved into an even larger factory … in 1972 Ferruccio Lamborghini sold his company to Same Co of Treviglio.
Still the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini shows a very large collection of Lamborghini tractors, from the very early ones to the late Sixties and early Seventies models, but also specialized units on tracks instead of wheels … it is truly a very interesting display at the museum, and being a massive part of the history of Lamborghini makes it a perfect addition to the cars that complete the exhibition today.
The museum also shows items from Lamborghini Caloreclima, the company making central heating and air conditioning equipment (this factory was in fact located behind the old Centro Polifunzionale in Dosso) … so it is not only about the legendary cars that proudly wear the Lamborghini name and Raging Bull logo … the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini is a celebration of a legendary man.
Another very nice collection on display at the Museo Ferruccio Lamborgini are the various golf carts built by Tonino Lamborghini, there is even a very special one that was created specifically for Pope John Paul II, by the way, did you know the Vatican police has four Lamborghini golf carts in use to patrol St Peter’s Square.
So how about the cars that are shown in the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini? In fact most of the cars on display were owned by Ferruccio himself over the years, the very first one being the little red race car wearing number 427 on the side, but also the dark red toycar he made for Tonino … alongside a black Ford Mustang, or a Bentley and a Rolls Royce … there is even a red Ferrari parked next to the red Lamborghini 400 GT 2+2. In fact there are quite a few non-Lamborghini cars in the museum, together with several bikes … like the traditional Vespa for instance … all part of the Ferruccio Lamborghini history.
While the functional Lamborghini 350 GTV was restored many years ago and currently resides in a private collection, the Museo does have a light blue metallic mock-up of this prototype on display, and talking about prototypes … make sure you check out the partly clad chassis for the LM002 … actually showing Cheetah styling in a front engine design. Other prototypes include one of only two Urraco concepts made by Bertone and the impressive Espada prototype with the Marzal style opening doors, or how about one of only two Jalpa Spyder ever made … the only one known to have survived.
There are also several one-off models shown in the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini, like a bright yellow Lamborghini Jarama SVR, perhaps inspired by the orange Jarama Bob created by the late Bob Wallace, this yellow sample takes the track inspiration a few notches higher with a massive rear wing, stripped down interior, fixed headlights and a new engine cover up front. A few meters away another one of a kind Lamborghini draws attention … again a yellow one, this Urraco based car shows wide rear fenders and special, round air intakes on the custom engine cover … the US Specs side lights and black bumper make this one look like it was based on the P111 model in fact.
The more regular cars in this collection are the red 400GT 2+2, a dark grey Islero S, another Islero S in light blue, a silver metallic Jarama S, a yellow Miura S, the stunning red Miura SV, a silver metallic Espada, a white Espada mounted against the wall, a brown metallic Urraco P250 S, a blue metallic Urraco P300, the red Countach Quattrovalvole and the yellow Diablo, one of the last Lamborghini the late Ferruccio would experience in his lifetime.
I know many people these days only know about the Lamborghini Gallardo, the Aventador and the Huracan, but if you are interested in some of the history that went in to creating some of the world’s most important automotive masterpieces, and the man that made it all possible in the first place … you just have to visit the Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini … you will not be disappointed!
Museo Ferruccio Lamborghini
Tonino Lamborgini Forum
Strada Provinciale 4
Galliera Sud 319
40050 Funo di Argelato (Bo)