Lamborghini: Forty Years, by David Jolliffe and Tony Willard

19 Nov 2009 | 2,492 views | No Comment
Italian Car Books, Anyone? If you want to get your motor revving smoothly, buy an Italian sports car. If you want to do it cheaply, buy a book about Italian sports car. There are some awfully good ones around, too. One of favorites is "Lamborghini: Forty Years," by David Jolliffe and Tony Willard. This is a lavish coffee table-style book that covers the brand up to the fabulous Gallardo. It includes lots of historical photos, including shoots of the late Ferruccio Lamborghini, an industrialist who was so dissatisfied with the performance of Ferraris he had purchased that he decided to build cars bearing his own name after reportedly being snubbed by Ferrari founder Enzo Ferrari. Along with the lavish pictures of the production cars themselves, there's a useful guide in the back that has photos, production statistics, production starting date and date of last model built for every Lamborghini ever made. Top speed figures also are included, which should help settle more than a few arguments about these cars. What makes the book so useful is that the text is so readable. While there is some technical material covered, much interesting narrative, anecdotes and historical material make for excellent reading for enthusiasts. This book is a worthy addition to your personal library at $40, published by Motorbooks (MBI Publishing Co.) Another interesting book is the "Illustrated Lamborghini Buyer's Guide," also published by Motorbooks. Using a star rating system, brief texts and discussion of individual characteristics and idiosyncrasies of each model, this book provides valuable information. If Ferraris are your thing, there are hundreds of books out there for you. Two of the most unusual take you through the factory where the cars are built. "Ferrari: The Factory: Maranello's Secrets 1950 to 1975" has commentary by Karl Ludvigsen, and is available through Motorbooks for $24.95. It contains numerous black and white photos of the early days of Ferrari. One page shows the first rough sketch of the factory, and there are pictures of some of the early models being assembled at the plant. The engines of Ferraris really are what it's all about for many enthusiasts, and you'll find lots of historical shots of some of the more famous engines being constructed or tested. The most delectable shots are of the cars themselves, awaiting inspection at the end of assembly, or waiting on the cobblestone floor at the plant or in the outside courtyard. Visiting auto factories is a fun pastime for a lot of people who love cars. Problem is, there aren’t many auto factory tours available this year, except for Ford’s River Rouge plant tour, which, incidentally, comes highly recommended. But if you think those tours are rare, imagine the thousands you’d have to spend to tour an Italian auto makers plant. Well, you can put your money back inside your pocket, and find yourself a copy of "Inside Ferrari," by Michael Dregni, $29.95, Motorbooks. It takes you through the plant via beautiful color pictures, and has more up-to-date photos that give you a better idea of what the factory looked like only very recently. You'll also see layouts of the plant and the test track, pictures and visits with factory employees, and a visit to the factory showroom. Because of the informality and comprehensiveness of this book, it's a must for Ferrari lovers.

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