When you’re thinking of luxury cars, there are two brands that inevitably come to mind: Ferrari and Lamborghini. Both brands have Italian origins, and it seems that those who hail from Italy have mastered the craft of making stunning vehicles capable of peak performance. Ferrari and Lamborghini are known for producing some of the most sought-after, and expensive, vehicles in the world. Whether you’re looking to buy, rent, or simply learn more about these renowned brands, here’s everything you need to know about Ferrari and Lamborghini.
It all dates back to the year 1898 – when Enzo Ferrari was born in Modena, Italy. From very early on, Enzo developed a fierce passion for racecars. He became fascinated with well-known drivers, like Felice Nazzaro, and was able to watch major races back in the day. Although he was already entranced with the automotive world, he enlisted and served in the Italian Army during WW1. It was while serving in the army that Enzo became attached to the symbol of the prancing horse, which appeared on the war pilot Frances Baracca’s plane.
After returning from war, Enzo started working as a racecar driver with Alfa Romeo Automobiles, winning numerous races and bringing global recognition to the team. He soon developed enough prestige to form his own racing team, and eventually left to form his own company, Auto Avio Costruzioni, in 1939.
His initial focus was on building cars for the racetrack. Ferrari worked with his team to create powerful vehicles, but WW11 interrupted Ferrari’s plans, forcing the company to move their headquarters and to temporarily produce vehicles for Mussolini’s government. After the conflict ended, Enzo decided it was time to rebrand, so throughout the late 1940s and early ‘50s, Enzo and his team continued to develop world-class cars, now under the name Ferrari. In 1951, a Ferrari vehicle took home first place in the Grand Prix tournament, cementing Ferrari on the map as a force to be reckoned with.
Ferrari continued their rise to fame, eventually creating cars that were made not just for the track, but for private ownership. In 1969, Enzo Ferrari sold half the company to Fiat Group, which was able to help expand upon Enzo’s vision and help Ferrari find their ideal market. Enzo Ferrari passed in 1988, but his legacy remains.
Today, Ferraris are regarded as some of the most exclusive cars in the world. There are approximately 7,000 Ferrari cars produced annually, meaning it’s difficult to get your hands on one. But what it is that makes the car so special? For starters, the brand’s advanced F1 transmission technology. This system ensures that shifting gears is completely seamless, and drivers barely have to touch down on the accelerator before the car takes off at top speed. Known for their innovative engines and racecar-centric interiors, it’s safe to say Ferraris won’t be going anywhere any time soon.
Some of the brand’s most notable vehicles include the Ferrari Dino, an iconic car from the 1960s, the Ferrari F40, which was marketed as a “racecar for the road,” and more modern innovations, like the Ferrari California T and the Ferrari 488 Spider.
Born in 1916, the founder of Lamborghini, Ferruccio Lamborghini didn’t originally have luxury vehicles on his radar. The Italian-born businessman initially opened a tractor factory, thinking he would serve his local area and make some money while doing it. Although the experience of driving a tractor and driving a Lamborghini is quite different, it was this early entrepreneurial venture that laid the groundwork for his success.
The tractor factory was launched after WW11, and Lamborghini was able to develop quite a bit of wealth during this time. He soon began launching other small companies, and eventually had developed a small fortune for himself – all before the age of 50. By the time he considered designing luxury vehicles, Ferrari had already established itself as a leader in the market. Lamborghini admired Ferraris but thought he could design a vehicle to compete with the powerful cars. It wasn’t until 1962 that he began developing the first Lamborghini, but he had the capital to purchase the best equipment, a sizable factory, and funds to hire efficient, experienced workers.
Lamborghini’s first vehicle, the 350 GTV, was created by experienced engineers. Even though the car was created hastily, it came together and led way to the debut of the 350 GT, one of the brand’s most beloved vehicles to date. In 1966, the brand was praised highly for its Miura coupe, which was a standout vehicle for its revolutionary rear mid-engine, rear wheel driver features.
The brand experienced nothing but success and growth during the early years, but sales dropped after the oil crisis and financial market dip in the early 1970s. Ferruccio Lamborghini sold the company and retired shortly after. Since 1998, Lamborghini has been owned by the Volkswagen Group and is now under control of the brand’s Audi division.
Although there’s no longer a Lamborghini family member behind the wheel, the luxury brand has continued to produce stunning, highly functional vehicles. Models like the Lamborghini Aventador and Huracan continue to inspire car enthusiasts around the world.
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