The Matadors exhibition before the kill

08 July 2022

Lamborghini Faena Coupé Quattro Porte by Frua

The Italian coachbuilder Pietro Frua created the only four-door Lamborghini in existence in 1978; the Frua Faena was built on a reinforced 1974 Espada Series II chassis.

This four-door Lamborghini Grand Tourer was built in 1978 and was intended to be a prototype. Lamborghini already got their four-seater way back in 1968 with the Espada. For ten years, it provided more than adequate functionality; after all, they were first and foremost builders of 2-seat high-performance coupés.

For some reason, the Raging Bull (incidentally, Faena means; the Matador’s final series of passes with sword and cape before the kill) decided they wanted not only a four-seater but also four doors. And this revelation was displayed at the 1978 57th Salone Internazionale dell’Automobile, in Turin in the spring of 1978.

It took Pietro Frua 8 months to create his four-door Lamborghini. He stretched the standard Espada chassis 7 inches to accommodate the rear seats and ended up with a car totalling 18 ft in length, adding 440 pounds to the total weight.

It next appeared at the 1980 Geneva Motor Show. The Lamborghini Faena Coupé Quattro Porte did not receive particularly favourable comments from the motoring press or Joe Public. The appearance from the front of the car was impressive. However, the rear of the car fell short of expectations.

The Matador’s sword failed to kill; despite a high-quality build, it was not a success, and Pietro Frua’s aspirations for producing the Faena Coupé evaporated.

Following the Geneva Motor Show, the car was sold to Lambo-Motor AG in Basle, who sold it to a German collector, but it remained registered in Switzerland. The next sighting was in 1996 at the Pullicino Classics in London; although the motor car was in excellent condition, it was still unrestored.

Only one Faena was built, and is still the only proper 4-door Grand Tourer from Lamborghini.

I have excluded the insane bizarre desert monster, the Lamborghini LM002, and the Urus, as neither can be called GTs.