Rare Rides: The Incredibly Rare 2014 Lamborghini 5-95, by Zagato

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis

We’ve featured a number of Zagato-enhanced Rare Rides previously, the majority of which were from exotic European nameplates. The most recent example of the type was the Ferrari 599 GTZ Nibbio Spyder. Today’s Rare Ride is from a different Italian brand, one thus far unrepresented by Zagato edits.

Presenting the Lamborghini 5-95, from 2014.

Before it was altered by Zagato, the 5-95 was a Gallardo. An important car for the brand, the Gallardo slotted in under the Murciélago as the second Lamborghini developed under new Audi ownership and the brand’s entry-level car. Lamborghini hadn’t offered an entry-level model in some time (the brand was a mess for a couple of decades) so the Gallardo was the official successor to the Jalpa.

Audi purchased Lamborghini in 1998 from MegaTech (which had restructured as V’Power), the company that also occasionally built the Vector M12. We’ll have to cover the Lamborghini history story separately, as it’s interesting stuff.

The Gallardo’s initial shape was from 1995, a concept called Calà penned at Italdesign by Fabrizio Giugiaro. The production design was refined and finalized by VW’s main man Luc Donckerwolke.

Gallardo was a much more “affordable” model than its older Murciélago brother and used only 10 cylinders instead of 12. The debut engine was 5.0 liters in displacement and produced 493 horsepower and 376 lb-ft of torque. Transmissions included a six-speed manual, and a six-speed automated manual (paddle controlled) marketed as E-gear. Top speed of the coupe version was 192 miles per hour initially, with a time to 62 miles per hour of 4.2 seconds.

The Gallardo was updated in 2006 and earned a second generation in 2009, which modernized its looks and carried it until the end of its production for the 2014 model year. Second-gen models used a 5.2-liter V10 good for 552 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque. Gallardo was replaced by the Huracán.

At the end of the Gallardo’s run, Zagato was approached by a well-heeled customer, Albert Spiess. A resident of Switzerland, Speiss owned many Lamborghini and Alfa Romeo bespoke and limited-build models, and wanted to commission another. Zagato got to work, and debuted its 5-95 on the company’s 95th birthday.

Zagato applied its design philosophy, so-called functionalism and rationalism to the 5-95. Front and rear clips were changed substantially over the standard Gallardo and given more organic shapes. The standard car’s sharp edges were smoothed in every possible place, and the rear was given a new wrap-around windshield. The rear deck in general was very much transformed, with roof and side air intakes covered in matte plastic and glass, respectively. Based on photographs, changes to the interior were few. The exterior alterations took the Gallardo back toward its first-generation appearance. Your author initially assumed the 5-95 was a first-gen edit from early in the Gallardo’s run.

Underneath, the 5-95 was the Superleggera version of the Gallardo. It used a tuned version of the 5.2-liter V10, and offered 562 horsepower. That meant the 5-95 took 3.4 seconds to get to 62 and reached the halo top speed of over 200 miles per hour (202).

At a cost of over $1 million each, Zagato found more than one customer for the 5-95 after debut. Speiss’ example was represented by the matte orange one seen here. The company never released an official production figure, but judging by photos available online Zagato produced four or five 5-95 coupes. Zagato followed up with a Spyder version in 2018. There are none for sale presently.

[Images: Zagato]

Corey Lewis
Corey Lewis

Interested in lots of cars and their various historical contexts. Started writing articles for TTAC in late 2016, when my first posts were QOTDs. From there I started a few new series like Rare Rides, Buy/Drive/Burn, Abandoned History, and most recently Rare Rides Icons. Operating from a home base in Cincinnati, Ohio, a relative auto journalist dead zone. Many of my articles are prompted by something I'll see on social media that sparks my interest and causes me to research. Finding articles and information from the early days of the internet and beyond that covers the little details lost to time: trim packages, color and wheel choices, interior fabrics. Beyond those, I'm fascinated by automotive industry experiments, both failures and successes. Lately I've taken an interest in AI, and generating "what if" type images for car models long dead. Reincarnating a modern Toyota Paseo, Lincoln Mark IX, or Isuzu Trooper through a text prompt is fun. Fun to post them on Twitter too, and watch people overreact. To that end, the social media I use most is Twitter, @CoreyLewis86. I also contribute pieces for Forbes Wheels and Forbes Home.

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Join the conversation
  • Astigmatism Astigmatism on Aug 11, 2021

    This looks like Buffalo Bill sewed together a super car suit from kidnapped Bugatti EB110s and stretched it over a Toyota MR2.

    • Theflyersfan Theflyersfan on Aug 11, 2021

      And tacked on a McLaren rear. I know there were some engine upgrades, but I don't know why these boutique builders think that by adding some plastic on what was already an attractive design would make it better. This thing looks like it would melt in the sun.

  • Imagefont Imagefont on Aug 11, 2021

    What a hideous pile of crap, looks like a robot vacuum, only uglier. Why do all Lamborghini’s have to echo the Countach, also ridiculous and hideous? Why can’t all Lamborghini’s look more like the Muira, one of the most beautiful cars ever built???

    • Noble713 Noble713 on Aug 14, 2021

      If it wasn't for the Countach and Diablo, I never would have fallen in love with Lambos. That said.....this Zagato treatment looks TERRIBLE. The angular design language of modern Lambos just doesn't mesh well with Zagato's approach to styling, which is more befitting of Ferrari or Aston Martin curvy sheet metal.

  • Grg I am not sure that this would hold up in snow country. It used to be that people in snow country would not be caught dead in a white car. Now that white cars have become popular in the north, I can't tell you how many times I have seen white cars driving in the snow without lights. Almost all cars are less visible in a snow storm, or for that matter, rain storm, without lights. White ones become nearly invisible.
  • Douglas I have a 2018 BMW 740e PHEV, and love it. It has a modest electric only range compared to newer PHEV's (about 18 miles), but that gets me to the office and back each day. It has a small gas tank to make room for the battery, so only holds about 11 gallons. I easily go 600 or more miles per tank. I love it, and being able to take long road trips without having to plug in (it just operates like a regular Hybrid if you never plug it in). It charges in 75 minutes in my garage from a Level 2 charger I bought on Amazon for $350. Had an electrician add a dryer outlet beside the breaker box. It's the best of both worlds and I would definitely want a PHEV for my next car. 104,000 miles and ZERO problems with the powertrain components (so far).
  • Panther Platform I had a 98 Lincoln Mark VIII so I have a soft spot for this. The Mark VIII styling was not appreciated by all.
  • Grant P Farrell Oh no the dealership kept the car for hours on two occasions before giving me a loaner for two months while they supposedly replaced the ECU. I hate cords so I've only connected it wirelessly. Next I'm gonna try using the usb-c in the center console and leaving the phone plugged in in there, not as convenient but it might lower my blood pressure.
  • Jeff Tiny electrical parts are ruining today's cars! What can they ...