Supercars are willfully selfish devices – that’s pretty much the point. Room for two humans, not quite all their luggage, lots of noise and consumption, and a rolling, revving symbol that you’re much richer than anyone looking on from the pavement, thankyouverymuch. In 2005, Lamborghini took the idea of antisocial supercars one step further, by building one specifically designed for drivers who’d fallen out with their passenger.
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TG’s guide to concepts: Lambo Concept S
Remember when Lamborghini previewed the Gallardo Spyder with this split-cockpit supercar?
Meet the Concept S. Looks like a Gallardo Spyder that’s been run over by a giant penny farthing, right? The Pebble Beach concours design study was supposedly inspired by classic single seater racers – an area Lamborghini has barely any heritage in – and divided the cockpit into two, placing a crossmember between the seats and giving each occupant their own hooded windscreen.
Amid the rear bulkhead, Lamborghini installed an extra cooling intake for the mid-mounted 5.2-litre V10, so even if the passengers had attempted a conversation, they’d be swiftly drowned out then deafened by 550bhp of induction howl. Because this was a drivable, fully functional concept car.
As a party piece, Lamborghini solved the problem of not having anywhere to mount a rear-view mirror by hiding it in the car’s spine, and fashioning an electrically retractable mechanism to hoik it into view whenever required.
Despite what Lamborghini called ‘astonishing public demand’, the production version of the concept S was a conventional Spyder, with a regular roof, normal windscreen (and mirror), and a cockpit that allowed two people to talk to one-another without a pesky structural beam upsetting the feng shui. A curiously sensible decision, in the mad, bad world of Lamborghini. Though at least today’s millionaires can buy a brace of BAC Monos if they’re craving the same effect…