Lamborghini Gallardo

By Guy Bird for Intersection, Jan 2005

Cutting it in yellow

Can flash cars really help you impress hard-to-please London women? We put a bright yellow Lamborghini Gallardo to the test... 

“Lucky @$%£”, the scaffolder whispered as he watched us roll by. “There ain’t nothing a woman wouldn’t do in the front of one of them – NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE,” he bellowed at the end, implying one car size and type would literally fit all. Although hardly an advertising slogan Lamborghini could or would want to employ on the walls of its super sleek London showroom, its management might smile at the broad sentiment: ‘Buy a Lamborghini and the world will become your oyster’ (if it isn’t already from having enough money to afford one).

Testing this theory for a morning in some of London’s swankier locations the reality was a little different. The non-driving Japanese journalist working for a jazz magazine got us off to a bad start. “It’s eye-catching. But who’s going to be behind the wheel? A male version of a bimbo I reckon.” Instantly feeling like Christian from Nip/Tuck after a bad day at the office, we move on. There’s no time to wax lyrical about the luxuriant but muted grey leather interior with tasteful yellow stitching and grey carpet under foot. Her loss.

It gets no better. The smart late-20-something English girl at South Ken tube isn’t interested either. “I wouldn’t give the person behind the wheel the time of day. I’m not really a car person.” Talking up how great the engine sounds when you floor the accelerator to 8000revs without so much as a waggle from the tail, would be lost on her anyway. Too bad.

“There ain’t nothing a woman wouldn’t do in that, NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE,” bellowed the scaffolder

Outside the Ralph Lauren store a classy mid-30s German brunette continues the crushing feeling. “It’s not my cup of tea. I would go for a classic car or a Porsche. Fast is good, but I don’t like the colour or the design. I know it’s a Lamborghini, but I like the classic ones better like the Miura. It’s too boxy and angular. I wouldn’t be impressed by a man in this car.”

Even when I explain it’s now really a German car with VW reliability behind it, she remains unconvinced. There’s no time to add how easy it is to drive and manoeuvre round town. She’s off. Starting to despair that the only people genuinely impressed by this stylish and compact supercar are nerdy teenage boys and moronic builders, I finally find my theoretical automotive soul mate.

The early-20s Brazilian woman outside the Lamborghini showroom is genuinely excited at the sight of the unidentified yellow sculpture at the roadside. “I like the whole package. Is it a Porsche? No? I’m sorry – ahh, it’s a Lamborghini. Oooh, they’re very fun. I couldn’t be more happy if my date turned up in this.” What about if he drove fast, would that scare you? “Fast? No I’d love it, it would be a thrill.”

I think I’m in with a chance here. All that luggage might be a problem, but I’m sure we can find room. A woman who says sorry for not knowing the make of your Italian supercar should always be forgiven for her excessive shopping.

Do

  • Take it somewhere were you can drive fast – it’s worth the wait
  • Talk up the engine note to friends – in this instance it’s ok to do so
  • Consider it for everyday use

Don’t

  • Try to carry much
  • Pronounce the ‘lls’ in Gallardo – variations on ‘Guy-ardow’ are more accurate and will make you seem more cosmopolitan
  • Try to pull London women – they’re not easily impressed
  • Take yourself too seriously – it is yellow

 


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