1970s supercars

Published: 10 July 2008

Supercars in the Seventies

Lamborghini continued to define the supercar in the ’70s, building on the success of the dramatic Miura with the brutal and startling silhouette of the Countach. But Lambo’s nemesis Ferrari was never far behind, and the two Italian thoroughbreds dominated the market, with a succession of beautiful supercars throughout the decade. Despite the threat of the global oil crisis, the Germans started to muscle in on supercar territory with the rare BMW M1 and Porsche's upstart sports car, the 911 Turbo.
Browse our GBU-style pick of the decade's landmarks below – and vote for your favourite supercar decade in our poll

 

Make and model

Year

Price

Engine

0-60mph

Top speed

Ferrari 365 GT4 Boxer

1973 

£14,610 

 4390cc flat 12, 360bhp, 311lb ft 

 5.4sec

 175mph


Ferrari 365 Boxer supercar

For 

 Pininfarina's styling set the look for Ferraris until well
 into the 1980s  

Against 

 Ferrari's answer to the Miura arrived seven years late

Verdict 

 A seminal Ferrari for styling and engineering, too often overlooked

 

Ferrari's first mid-engined V12 was good enough to stay in production for nine years, bridging the huge gap between the Sixties Daytona and the Testarossa of the Eighties

Related Articles:    Other Ferrari stories 

 

Make and model

Year

Price

Engine

0-60mph

Top speed

Porsche 911 Turbo

 1974

£14,749

2994cc flat six, 260bhp, 253lb ft

6.0sec

155mph


Porsche 911 Turbo supercar

For 

 The car that took the 911 into supercar territory; a legend was born

Against 

 Everything you've heard about the handling of early cars is an
 understatement. A rollercoaster drive

Verdict 

 Is it a true supercar? Drive one and try to deny it

 

What a transformation: the first 911 Turbos had terrifying handling, evil turbo-lag but only around 260bhp. Modern 997 iteration has power and grip in spades – but it's taken 33 years of development

Related Articles:  News  |  Car reviews  | Other Porsche stories
 


Make and model

Year

Price

Engine

0-60mph

Top speed

Lamborghini Countach

 1974

£16,134

 3929cc V12, 375bhp, 286lb ft

 5.6sec

174mph 

Lamborghini Countach supercar

For 

 In production for 16 years, and still gob-smacking now

Against 

 It took them most of that time to make it driveable and reliable

Verdict 

 Say supercar and you picture a Countach

 

How did Lambo top the revolutionary Miura? By slotting the engine and gearbox not just transversely, but backwards into its successor, and getting Gandini to produce an even more extraordinary shape. Adorned many a bedroom wall to keep Athena profits sky-high

Related Articles:  Other Lamborghini stories

 


Make and model

Year

Price

Engine

0-60mph

Top speed

BMW M1

1978 

£26,810 

 3453cc straight six, 277bhp, 239lb ft

 5.8sec

 161mph


BMW M1 supercar

For 

 Spawned the Procar F1 support races: often better than the main event 

Against 

 'Only' 277bhp in road trim

Verdict 

 There's been a supercar-shaped hole in BMW's range ever since

 

BMW's only mid-engined supercar nearly never happened: Lamborghini was asked to develop it, then almost went bust. Built in tiny numbers (fewer than 500), but the glorious straight-six lived on in the first M5 and M6

Related Articles:  News | Other BMW stories  

 

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