Mitja Borkert’s approach to designing the 2022 Lamborghini Countach is a masterful blend of reverence for its heritage and a leap into the future. As the Head of Design at Automobili Lamborghini, he walks Yanko Design through his creative process, illuminating how the new Countach is a culmination of various iconic elements from its predecessors, reimagined for the 21st century.
Borkert’s design journey begins with the original Countach prototype, unveiled 50 years ago at the Geneva Auto Show. He extracts the essence of its purity and simplicity, as evidenced in the uncluttered silhouette and the slim front grille. This minimalist approach is a nod to the prototype’s untainted form, a defining characteristic he sought to echo in the new model.
The influence of the LP400 ‘Periscopio’ is evident in the innovative photochromatic roof panels of the 2022 Countach. This modern interpretation of the ‘Periscopio’ view offers a contemporary solution to the original’s limited rear visibility, allowing the driver to adjust the transparency of the roof panels as needed.
The most striking inspiration comes from the LP5000 Quattrovalvole, known for its exaggerated features and a favorite among Countach enthusiasts. Borkert draws from this version to infuse the new Countach with a sense of drama and presence. The hexagonal wheel arches, reminiscent of the Quattrovalvole’s prominent flares, are reinterpreted with a more human, rounded form. This subtle softening of lines blends the Countach’s characteristic sharpness with elegance.
In reimagining the Countach for the present day, Borkert doesn’t just replicate; he reinterprets. For instance, the new model’s taillights are an agonal shape iconic to the original but are slimmed down, aligning with the car’s overall streamlined aesthetic. The chopped-off rear end, another hallmark of the classic Countach, is reenvisioned to dramatically showcase the rear tires, much like a motorcycle, adding to the car’s dynamic stance.
His vision for the 2022 Countach extends to its interior, drawing inspiration from a white Countach with a red interior owned by Lamborghini in the mid-1980s. This color theme is a tribute, linking the past with the present.
The essence of the Countach spirit underlies all the design elements of this car, making it an experience rather than just a sight to behold. The new model maintains the V12 engine’s iconic roar, which is a crucial aspect of its DNA and has been amplified by a specially designed exhaust system. This sound, combined with the innovative design, not only pays tribute to its predecessors but also honors its long-standing legacy in the world of high-performance supercars.