The aim of a smaller less-expensive model to complement its V12-engined cars was realised by Lamborghini in 1970 with the announcement of the Urraco. Intended to compete with rivals such as Ferrari's Dino 308 and Porsche's 911, the four-seater Urraco retained the Miura's basic mechanical layout, but in place of the former's transversely-mounted 4.0-litre V12 used a 2.5-litre V8. A two-seater development, the Bertone-styled Silhouette, appeared in 1976 powered by the Urraco P300's four-cam, 3.0-litre V8. Intended as a 308GTB competitor, the Silhouette possessed excellent handling balance and was every bit as quick as its Ferrari rival in a straight line, but never achieved anything like the same volume of sales. Notable as the first open Lamborghini, the Silhouette was produced for little more than a year, a mere 52 being made, and had gone by 1978. The Urraco followed a year later, and the concept of a smaller V8-engined Lamborghini was allowed to lapse until the arrival of the Jalpa in 1982.
Based on the defunct Silhouette, the Jalpa was reworked by the great Giulio Alfieri, late of Maserati, who lengthened the engine's stroke for a capacity of 3,485cc. Maximum power increased to 255bhp, good enough to give the aerodynamic Jalpa a top speed of around 155mph. There were a few styling changes - neater chin spoiler, subtly altered rear quarters, different wheels - while inside the interior's ergonomics were significantly improved. Otherwise the Jalpa remained much as its predecessor but would enjoy considerably greater success, remaining in production into the 1990s by which time 410 cars had been built.
One of only 35 completed in right-hand drive configuration, this particular Jalpa formed part of an important UK-based private collection of Italian sports cars for 20-plus years, sharing its accommodation with various other Lamborghinis (see photographs on file). Chassis number '12199' has the optional air conditioning and large rear spoiler, and is finished in red with black leather interior. Currently displaying a total of 52,678 kilometres (approximately 32,700 miles) on the odometer, the car is described as in generally good condition having been re-commissioned by Steve Webb. We are advised that there is good oil pressure and that the engine does not overheat in traffic. This good looking and under rated Italian sports car is offered with old-style logbook, MoT to April 2013 and Swansea V5 registration document.