Squadra Corse on ice: Farewell trip with the last Lamborghini Gallardo

The Gallardo arrived 10 years ago, at the dawn of a new era for Sant’Agata. Now, the most successful Lamborghini of all time is to be replaced – and we have a farewell rendezvous with its last and most radical incarnation, the Gallardo LP 570-4 Squadra Corse…

Not even the schoolchildren of Sant’Agata could differentiate between all the different Gallardos

A certain melancholy creeps over us. The last V10 roar; the final feel of the grippy Alcantara between your fingers while the tachometer nervously twitches at idle. It’s a familiar, yet no less special, feeling for us: we’ve fittingly sampled a cocaine-white Spyder in Miami; pitched the very first Superleggera against a 911 GT3 RS; and tested the LP 570-4 Super Trofeo on the road. The entire editorial staff was rather taken by the ‘little bull’, so uncompromisingly edgy and charismatic.

Requiem for a V10

The last Gallardo is the most radical: the Squadra Corse is derived from the LP 570-4 Super Trofeo racing car, reduced to its elements to compete in a one-model racing series, as well as GT3 racing. This equates to reduced weight (to 1,370kg), more power (562bhp), and racing addenda such as a quick-release bonnet and giant carbonfibre rear wing. But the close allegiance to the racing car offers us little more than a hint at its potential, as Switzerland at this time of year is under a carpet of snow, with a blanket of fog obscuring vision for each upcoming curve. Unleashing the bull’s full force in these conditions is not a wise idea, even taking the four-wheel-drive system into account. We instead practice moderation and use our journey as a mental requiem, even though any associations with Wolfgang Amadeus must be renounced due to the lack of a sound system.

The last of its kind?

The first design by Luc Donckerwolke was a manifestation of pure yet extreme lines. Then, the names became longer, the spoilers became bigger, and by the end of its career, not even the schoolchildren of Sant’Agata could differentiate between the different Gallardos. Now, after 10 long years – and far too many special editions – it’s due for replacement. The stubborn bull is still as brutal and uncompromising as it was the day the first model left the factory, but it no longer has the same everyday driveability or practicality as its new-school rivals, the Ferrari 458 or McLaren 12C. Its replacement will lock horns with them from next year’s Geneva show onwards but, until then, we’ll enjoy the rough and raw Lamborghini experience for possibly the last time – as it might be the last of its kind.

Photos: Jan Baedeker

Numerous classic and modern Lamborghinis can be found for sale in the Classic Driver Market.