The Countach Poster
Newly-single Dads with wet bars, stock brokers with studio apartments, and 12 year old boys. Those were the kind of folks that plastered posters of the Lamborghini Countach on their walls. I'm sorry if I've already offended some of you, but you'll have to agree that the most popular supercar of the 1980's was not only grotesque automotive icon, but an ugly interior design icon as well. I'd venture to guess that 75% of U.S. households had a Countach poster hung somewhere between 1980 and 1992. You know the posters I'm talking about: Red LP5000S cars with the doors up, black ones with simulated fog, yellow ones with a bikini-clad woman laying >ahem< provocatively on it. Don't sweat it, I won't post any of those here because this is a family-friendly blog ...and 1980's women are gross.
While I can remember seeing LOTS of these posters in friends bedrooms and in garages and used car dealerships, its the one in my friend's family room that I remember the most. Todd's Dad, who used to randomly show up with used Porsche 928's from time to time, bought and framed said Countach / naked lady poster and hung it in the family room of their home. This family room was really just a big man cave since he was divorced and didn't care about aesthetics, hence the large poster with the blonde woman and the Italian supercar front and center. Even as a 10 year-old I thought "That's pretty tacky". I was much more interested in Camaro Iroc-Z's and Corvette ZR-1's rather than Italian sportscars that I'd never see. (For the record, I also was also really interested in Jolt cola and Nintendo games.)
Back to the Countach. Why was this car ripe for the glossy 16" x 20" picking? Because its doors opened funny.
You see, the Countach, just like the Mercedes 300SL "Gullwing" and the DeLorean DMC12 were hailed as major milestone cars that married fashionable design with automotive function. Bertone designed the Countach and its crisp angular lines. It debuted in 1974 and looked pretty much the same when production ended in 1990. A wide body stance and a sweet V-12 helped make it a performer. Driver and passenger doors that opened up instead of out also made them unique. Lamborghini stuck with the theme even after the Countach, including models like the Diablo, Murcielago, and Aventador. Mercedes also recently did a retro gullwing door thingy with their SLS touring cars. Good for them. If you ask this guy, doors that open up are gimmicky. If you want to impress people, make a car that you can see out of, that doesn't cost $200,000 and that reasonable people can afford. Put that on a poster and then you'll really have something.
That came out a little strong. I guess the Countach was an OK car. And yeah, what cool kid or middle-aged bachelor wouldn't want a V-12 supercar on their family room wall? Maybe I thought the Lambo was tacky and not that great of a car. Or maybe after all these years I'm jealous that my friend Todd's Dad had a rocking poster of a sweet car on his wall, and I had a foldout auto show poster of an S-10 4x4 auto show taped to mine.