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1971 Lamborghini Miura Hidden for 40 Years Emerges With Bare Metal Finish

Credited as the first supercar with a mid-engined layout, the Lamborghini Miura isn't the kind of classic you should expect to find in a barn. However, some of the 764 units built went missing at some point. This 1971 example in P400 S trim is one of them. Hidden for more than 40 years in a California Bay Area warehouse, the Lambo resurfaced as a fully restored classic in a unique bare metal finish.
1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish 11 photos
Photo: Karissa Hosek/RM Sotheby's
1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish1971 Lamborghini Miura in bare metal finish
So what's the story of this Miura, you ask? Well, it turns out that it was originally owned by a 19-year-old Iranian student attending college at the University of California. Her parents purchased and took delivery of the car at the Lamborghini factory and shipped it to the United States.

She was supposed to list it for sale upon its arrival in North America, so the Miura was likely just a means of transferring money out of Iran. But things didn't go according to plan, as the daughter decided to keep and drive the car. She kept the supercar for around two years until a fender bender left the Miura in need of repairs.

Although the damage was minor, the Miura's intricate design was too great of a challenge for local repair shops at the time and the car was eventually sold to a body shop. The new owner reportedly ordered parts from Lamborghini in 1977 but he never got around to fixing the car, which remained locked in a warehouse for more than 40 years.

The Miura resurfaced and was purchased by a preservation specialist in 2019. It went through a lengthy restoration process that included a nose reconstruction by Beckman Metal Works and a drivetrain refresh by Miura specialist Jeff Stephan. But the owner chose not to restore the car's original Gray-White finish. Instead, he opted to enjoy the Miura's sculptural design in bare metal.

Perhaps the only unpainted (but restored) Miura out there, this supercar also stands out thanks to its desirable "transitional" specification. A late P400 S model, this Miura is one of about 50 cars that made the transition from S to SV specs in 1971. While it retains the narrow fenders and the "eye-lash" headlamps of the earlier models, it features the reinforced frame, larger Weber carburetors, and ported intake manifolds and cylinder heads that Lambo introduced on the SV.

As far as production numbers go, it's the rarest iteration of the Miura save for the extremely rare SVJ-spec cars based on the unique Jota.

While the decision to keep the car with an unfinished, bare-metal body seems questionable from a market value perspective, this Miura is considered a million-dollar classic in its current form. RM Sotheby's, which will put it under the hammer in Monterey, California on August 14, estimates that the supercar will change hands for $1.8 to $2.2 million.

Should the next owner repaint the car in its original hue or is the Miura better off with a naked and polished body? Let me know the comments.
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About the author: Ciprian Florea
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Ask Ciprian about cars and he'll reveal an obsession with classics and an annoyance with modern design cues. Read his articles and you'll understand why his ideal SUV is the 1969 Chevrolet K5 Blazer.
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