This past June, Lamborghini announced the completed restoration of an incredibly rare vintage Miura. How rare? This is a Miura SVR, chassis #3781, and the only example ever produced.
Originally launched in 1966, the Miura was Lamborghini’s first mid-engined supercar, and while any example is quite rare—a total of 763 were produced—only one was ever converted to SVR specification.
The project was carried out by Lamborghini’s in-house restoration wing, Polo Storico, which spent some 19 months returning the car to its conditions and specifications, the nature of which are a closely guarded company secret.
The SVR started life as a lime green (Verde Miura) Miura S in 1968, passing through a series of owners until it came into the hands of a German client named Heinz Steber. Following a small collision, Steber sent the car to Italy to be rebuilt as an SVR in 1974. (He had been unable to order the top-spec Miura Jota as it was out of production, and instead offered the Miura S as the base for the SVR upgrade.) As a result, his vehicle became more of a custom car than an actual spec.
The job took a year and a half, and shortly after completion, the SVR now re-painted bright red, was sold to an owner in Japan. With its distinctive roof spoiler, this unique Lamborghini was immortalized not only as a (now very collectible) Kyosho scale model, but also in the cult manga series, Circuit Wolf.
Given that only one was ever produced, and that the creation was heavily customized by Steber, the details of the Miura SVR specification are not widely known, specifically in how it would differ from a Jota or an SVJ. What we do know comes courtesy of Paolo Gabriello, director of Polo Storico, who has said, “The full restoration took 19 months and required a different approach to the way we normally work. The original production sheet wasn’t of much help, as we relied mostly on the specifications from the 1974 modifications.”
The SVR was delivered in several pieces and Polo Storico had to not only rebuild the car, but also reflect the original specification. This is no simple task given that there was little reference material and the only example was the one requiring a full restoration. As the current owner plans to take the SVR to race exhibitions, modifications over the original design were limited to racing-style seat belts, track-ready seats, and a removable roll bar.
To my eyes, the Lamborghini Miura is one of the most beautiful cars ever made. While the SVR’s aesthetic may lack the subtlety and deft balance of an earlier example, the SVR preserves that original Bertone design, with its low nose, wide stance, swooping roofline, and wide rear haunches. Add in that wild roof-mount spoiler and you’ve got a car that unquestionably forecasts the progressively wilder designs of Lamborghini in the 80s and 90s.
Now that the SVR has been rebuilt to its former and complete glory, the combination of the bold late-Miura styling and the incredible rarity, should make the SVR a hit at any of the world’s great car shows.
Photos courtesy of Lamborghini.
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