Countach - do you prefer with or without wing? | LamborghiniChat
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Countach do you prefer with or without wing?

Discussion in 'Lamborghini Supercars' started by wsaraceni, Mar 16, 2020.

?

with or without wing

  1. with

    12 vote(s)
    46.2%
  2. without

    14 vote(s)
    53.8%
  1. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Karting

    Aug 9, 2010
    98
    i guess its just because the first countach I saw was a 5000S with a wing, that unless its an original periscopo, it just looks off without the wing. but it seems most of the photos i see on here seem to show that there are a lot without the wing as well. which do you prefer?
     
  2. dinonz308

    dinonz308 Karting
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    My poster had the wing - so my new car had to also. It looks more pure without, but it looks more 80s crazy **** with, and that's what I like about it.
     
  3. EMILIO

    EMILIO F1 Rookie

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  4. EarlyCat

    EarlyCat Moderator
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    #4 EarlyCat, Mar 17, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2020
    A proper Countach has a wing, the rest just look cute. :)
     
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  5. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Karting

    Aug 9, 2010
    98
  6. NürScud

    NürScud Formula Junior

    Nov 3, 2012
    483
  7. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    That's a nice-looking wingless 87 or 88 Downdraft!

    There is a good reason why most cars have no wings, most Countachs were delivered without them, then many gained them in the 80s & 90s, and now, as with restoring them back to original configuration, the tendency is for people to take them off and discard them.

    For those of us old-timers who were around owning Countachs when the factory was still making them, a Countach with a wing is what looks a bit off.

    Yes, we know the wing is hugely popular.

    But here are the facts about Countachs wings as fitted to production cars:

    1. The wing is not an official Lamborghini SpA component, apparently many people do not know this.
    2. The wing has never been wind-tunnel tested to determine any usefulness to the car's handling at speed.
    3. The wing was never Homologated with the Transportation authorities in Italy, Europe, the USA or in fact anywhere, for application to the Countach
    4. The only measured result of the application of the wing is that it slows the car down and lightens the front end at very high speed - which as Valentinio will tell you is very dangerous and precisely why he refused to max-velocity winged cars.
    5. The wing is purely a cosmetic application for looks, it serves no other purpose.
    6. Most cars were delivered by Lamborghini SpA without a wing (see image below).

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  8. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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  9. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Many of the Gods are wingless, unless the wing was designed as an integral part of the car (such as with the F40 or F50) and accordingly wind-tunnel tested and proven to be an asset, it's a pass IMO.

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  10. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    By the end of Countach production, under Chrysler's ownership they were finally taking the liberty of installing wings inside the factory, witness the ratio.

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  11. EMILIO

    EMILIO F1 Rookie

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    correct:
    1987 nero tenebre quattrovalvole - carburatori
     
  12. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Karting

    Aug 9, 2010
    98

    interesting. I didn't know half of that.

    if it wasn't a Lamborghini component, where did the wing come from? was it mostly installed at the dealer? is there any record of how many wings were added at time of delivery vs much later on?

    also, in your experience, what does the addition or absence of a wing do to the value of a properly sorted car?
     
  13. simpen

    simpen Rookie

    Jun 14, 2016
    2
    Hard to talk about 'facts' when commenting on Lamborghini history, wouldn't you agree :) ?

    I remember reading somewhere the wings actually were tested & engineered to specifically not produce downforce, since this would negatively enhance the Countach's already rear-focused force distribution, making front-end lift worse. Its intent was to look cool only, definately not produce downforce, only drag.

    Also, points 3 & 1 are related, the rear wing was done for WW and never intended to be a production item although many people wanted to pay extra once they saw it. Now, why would you waste money on homologation to make it an official part, if you could also install it 'post-production' out back? Italians are creative in many, many ways!
     
  14. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    PPG 2.467.026 Nero Tenebre with Bianco is one of my favorite liveries for a Downdraft.

    The wings were made by a source local to the Sant Agata (BO) factory and installed outside of the factory itself because they were considered an aftermarket part which the manufacturer was not authorized to install, also, subsequently, many wings were installed by dealers and privateers worldwide in the 80s & 90s.

    Far more Countachs exist with wings than ever left the factory with them.

    No, there are no written records, but, pictures during the production period record what happend and tell the story

    The wings are purely personal preference, they don't really affect value one way or another because people are well aware that they can be added or removed at will.

    IMO it's actually quite easy to speak facts when discussing Lamborghini's history if you know what they are and have gathered corroborating evidence or proof over the years.

    In 35 years of close affiliation with insiders at Lamborghini SpA, I've not seen a single shred of evidence of any wing testing & engineering whatsoever, although I've asked the factory men for it on numerous occasions, nary an illustration or photographic evidence has been forthcoming.

    Where did you read somewhere that this was the case, and perhaps more importantly, what was the publication's source?

    In speaking personally to Giampaolo Dallara about this, his comment about the Wolf cars was they simply set the wing angle at a rake which they guessed wouldn't create too much downforce, no mention of any formal testing.

    That said I agree with you entirely that the net result was simply a whole lot of drag, and it was simply a component designed to look cool based on customer demand from people who saw the Wolf cars in the press.

    We know that the wings were made by Dallara for Wolf and never intended to be a production item, and were only made because people pestered the factory to make them one, but that doesn't explain away why the units were not Homologated. The reason they were not Homologated is simply because they were not part of the official design of any variant of production Countach, and were a post-production accessory. Other Italian car factories spent the money on the R&D for wings to be wind-tunnel tested as an integral part of their car's design and as a result they were Homologated as part of the production car.

    My points 1 & 3 are separately made as they speak to separate issues. The first point that the wing is not an official Lamborghini SpA component is an important basic distinction to make first & foremost for the uninitiated who have been brainwashed over the years by imagery to the point where many people I speak to are shocked to find out that it's an unofficial component.
    The third point deals with the legalization (or lack thereof) of the unit with the various transportation authorities, two separate issues which IMO deserve to be made separately so the full picture is painted as regards the wing.

    Those are aftermarket side-skirts.
     
  15. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Karting

    Aug 9, 2010
    98
    are they drilled into the existing panels or were they a bolt on part? how much work is involved with adding or removing them?


    that's what I assumed. would the first factory "side skirts" be the 88.5 ones and only factory ones with side skirts be the 88.5 and 25th anniversary?
     
  16. EMILIO

    EMILIO F1 Rookie

    Feb 23, 2006
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    attached via some screw and bolt on the trunk lid
    put in and out is easy but once your remove it you will have some small holes on both sides of the lid
     
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  17. NürScud

    NürScud Formula Junior

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    Any hi-res of this Mr Sackey?

    Thank you in advance!

    :)
     
  18. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    I wish, my friend.
     
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  19. Rossocorsa1

    Rossocorsa1 Formula Junior

    May 14, 2017
    711
    First, I will say, as a you teen in the 80's growing-up in the US, my love for the Countach was formed with the idea that the wing belonged on the car. I still am a big fan of the wing. That said, first and foremost, I am a lover of original preservation and/or restoration. I believe in the pure intent, shortcomings and all, of what was produced at the factory.

    When I first acquired my 85 downdraft early last year I knew I was going to take it directly into restoration. I also knew there were certain principles and guidelines I needed to establish between myself and my restorer so that we both remained committed to the original intent of the artisans that designed, engineered and produced my car. My car DID NOT have a wing on it, and never did. Still, I wanted to really understand the true origins of the wing during the time when my car was produced, because I contemplated acquiring one with an extra trunk lid so I would have the option of either look when I felt inclined. In addition to speaking with many in the community, including Joe, I had an extensive conversation with Valentino about this. He was absolutely clear that the wings were not installed on the production line within the factory during QV production. He did, however, say that, during QV production and after, a third party vendor was on property and installed wings for cars that were ordered with them. As Joe mentioned, Lamborghini, as the manufacturer, could not install wings because the cars were not approved to be manufactured with them. So, essentially, though applied on the grounds of the factory, they were affixed by a third party as an add-on. Ultimately, purity was more important to me than the wing. I may still acquire a wing and extra trunk lid, but my cars original trunk lid is being restored as is, amd we will remain true to the cars original specification.
     
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  20. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    #21 joe sackey, Mar 21, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2020
    The first Countach I purchased in the mid-80s was the famed Motor magazine World's Fastest Car LP500S, well known to have been supplied with a wing so I left it alone although I was tempted to remove it. When I got my second Countach circa the late 80s, it was a Rosso Siviglia/Panna Downdraft of no notable provenance whatsoever, it came with a wing, and I couldn't wait to take it off, in short, even though I was introduced to these cars in the 80s when they were being produced, I was never particularly enamored with the wing even though I understood other's preference for it, here I am @ speed wingless @ the old Goodwod circuit 30 years ago.

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  21. joe sackey

    joe sackey Three Time F1 World Champ
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    #22 joe sackey, Mar 21, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2020
    As an aside, I always thought the application of the wing being purely for looks as a cosmetic application was underscored by how flimsily they are attached to the supports, essentially just with rivets. The issue is not the dozen rivets used but rather the thin gauge of the wing's aluminum. You only have to stand behind a winged Countach an lay both hands on the unit to discover how much you can move it around (not the case on my GT3 RS for example). Once bolted into place on the supports, because of the size of the wing, I can only imagine the force exerted upon the attachment points at or near terminal velocity, in fact, in the late 80s I was told about a hapless German Countach high-speed pilot whose wing detached itself at high speed on the Autobahn, it did not end very well. I was also told this was one of the reasons they went to a smaller more upright wing.

    However, if you are gently cruising around, you should be just fine.

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  22. EarlyCat

    EarlyCat Moderator
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    My wing is tight. In fact, when I remove the deck lid to work on the car, I pick it up & carry it under the wing. No worries on the autobahn, I can only go as fast as the minivan in front of me. The cheap ass suspension joints are what bothers me, especially if I was at terminal speed on the autobahn.
     
  23. dinonz308

    dinonz308 Karting
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    Can't stand the front wing. Horrible attempt by US importers to raise the height of the front bumper!

    To me the wing is just as important as my authentic Magnum PI Hawaiian shirt when driving the 328 (yes I know, he drove a 308) - it's all part of what was the 80s. Yes, I know, drag and all that - but with the high performance cars I have I don't think I have ever been over 100 MPH. Speed isn't my thrill - taking a corner marked 45 at 90 is more my style, and the wing or Hawaiian shirt don't affect that.
     
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  24. EarlyCat

    EarlyCat Moderator
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    I'm not a fan of the front wing either. Luckily we don't all want the same thing & that is what keeps things interesting.
     
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