Lamborghini says it has rediscovered and certified the original Miura P400 used in The Italian Job some fifty years after the release of the film.
Polo Storico, the Italian firm’s division dealing with the restoration of older Lamborghini models, certified the Miura P400 as chassis #3586, the original car used in the Paramount Pictures film (more famous for its trio of Mini models) of 1969.
Lamborghini claims the orange Miura P400 was the “most pursued Miura in recent decades”.
It appeared at the start of the film, driven by the actor Rossano Brazzi on the Great St. Bernard Pass. While the car is destroyed in the movie, in reality, Paramount depicted an identical crashed Miura. Once it was established the car used in filming was not the one destroyed in the on-screen accident, a hunt began to find the opening-scene Miura.
Over the following five decades, Lamborghini says enthusiasts and collectors from around the world searched and amassed numerous and sometimes conflicting clues.
The current owner of this model, The Kaiser Collection of Vaduz (Liechtenstein), consulted Lamborghini Polo Storico in an attempt to give a chassis number to the Miura driven by Brazzi.
The vehicle was sent to Lamborghini’s specialist historic department at its Sant’Agata Bolognese headquarters, where Polo Storico’s reconstruction started from documentation in the company archives and from examining the car.
The results, says Lamborghini, were then supplemented with testimonies from enthusiasts and former employees, such as Enzo Moruzzi, who delivered the car to the set and drove it in all the shots as a stunt double.
Polo Storico thus found the missing evidence and certified that the Miura P400, chassis #3586, was exactly the one used to shoot The Italian Job.
Back in the 1960s, Paramount Pictures approached Lamborghini for a car to use for the filming. The firm decided on an orange Miura, which was already heavily damaged and therefore perfect for the crash scene. Lamborghini also provided a second car of the same colour. It was Enzo Moruzzi who took the car to the set.
“There was a Miura P400 almost ready on the production line, in the right colour, left-hand drive and with white leather interior. It was aesthetically identical to the damaged one and we decided to use it for the film. The only thing worrying us was the elegant white leather seats, given that car had to get back to Sant’Agata in perfect condition,” said Moruzzi.
“So, I asked for them to be taken out, replacing them with a set of black leather seats that we used for testing. The giveaway was the headrests, which on the Miura are attached to the dividing glass between the driver compartment and the engine compartment, which couldn’t be replaced in time. In the film, you can see the original white headrests.”
Once filming was over, the Miura was prepared for delivery to its first owner, an Italian from Rome. After almost 50 years, and having passed through the hands of different enthusiasts, both Italian and international, the P400 was bought in 2018 by the current Liechtenstein collector, Fritz Kaiser.