Move Aside Countach and Make Way For Another '80s Icon, the Lamborghini Jalpa

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Carlos Kirby
Updated on Apr 27, 2022 · 3 min read
luxury cars
, like the Lamborghini Jalpa, get a lot of attention amongst collectors. Vintage luxury cars are usually found
in mint condition at car shows
, where they're displayed and sold for millions of dollars. Lamborghini is no stranger to the luxury car phenomenon.
Lamborghini made several great cars in the 80s, most notably the Countach sports car. However,
recently drew our attention to another classic Lambo supercar. What is the Lamborghini Jalpa and why doesn't it get more love?
If you remember the first editions of the Countach, you’ll love the Lamborghini Jalpa.

The history of the Lamborghini Jalpa

While the Countach could only be purchased by more affluent drivers, the Jalpa's main objective was to be more affordable. The automaker had big ambitions for the Jalpa's success, considering that it had the same designer as the ultra-elusive Silhouette. The Lamborghini Jalpa made its debut in 1981.
Upon its release, the Lamborghini Jalpa had a Targa-style roof, which could be rolled down like modern sunroofs today. This was another trait borrowed from the Silhouette, along with the same rectangular headlights and the optional rear wing.
The Jalpa was also distinguished by its black plastic bumpers, engine cover, and air intakes. In 1984, those components would be replaced with panels to match the rest of the body's color. Despite its success, the Lamborghini Jalpa was killed off in 1988 after selling only 410 units.

How much heat is the Lamborghini Jalpa packing?

Under the Jalpa's hood is a carbureted V8 capable of 255 horsepower and 225 lb-ft of torque. It's paired with a five-speed manual transmission and has a reported top speed of 155 mph. It can hit 60 mph in six seconds or less, putting it on par with a Ferrari 308…on paper.
In reality,
says that the Jalpa isn't as fun to drive even compared to the most civilized Ferrari. For one thing, the automaker seemingly lied about the vehicle's 0-60 mph time. When critics took the car for a test drive, they consistently hit 60 mph around 6.8 seconds.
Additionally, the steering is too heavy and detracts from the overall feel of the drive. That's a shame because the Jalpa's handling is reportedly quite fun, and it does have some satisfying engine notes.

Why does the Lamborghini Countach get more attention?

Although the Jalpa was more accessible to new Lambo fans, that didn't translate to much hype for existing loyalists. No one could have foreseen the automaker’s decision to scrap the Jalpa so early, especially with its initial success. Tragically, this means that many people probably left their Jalpas to languish in parking lots.
Nowadays, the Jalpa is even rarer than the Countach. Although the latter vehicle is more expensive, nearly 2,000 examples were produced and many of them remain in pristine condition. Additionally, the Jalpa doesn't quite keep up with the Countach in terms of performance.
The Lamborghini Countach is a beast with its standard V12 engine and mid-engine rear-wheel-drive platform. According to
, it made 375 hp at 8,000 rpm during its final model year. It also has that unmistakable wedge shape that makes it stand out from other sports cars.
The Countach is unique in terms of design and more powerful, so it's more of a justified purchase today. We can't stop you from searching for a Jalpa, but there are better alternatives to be had. Jalopnik says a Jalpa will only cost around $50,000 if you can find one,
far cheaper than a Countach
Despite their high price tags, classic luxury cars aren't that expensive to insure! Sign up with
to see how much you can save.

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