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    What about the BMW 325ti E46?

    I’m commending you on such a great magazine. It really covers what I feel are the cars most of us mere mortals aspire to or do own without having to sell our souls. I love the mix of makes and the direct comparisons that caused such debates when the cars were new in our youth. Indeed, you featured one of my cars (my glorious BMW 850CSi E31) and that issue has achieved cult status on my coffee table.

    I would like to draw your attention to a car you seem to have overlooked, unless I have missed an article somewhere. In fact, the only mention of it appeared two years ago where you tipped it for future stardom. I give you the BMW E46 Compact 325ti.

    It’s about time we looked at the BMW 325ti E46.

    / #BMW-325ti-Compact-E46/5 / #BMW-325ti-Compact-E46 / #BMW-325ti-E46/5 / #BMW-325ti-Compact / #BMW-E46/5 / #BMW / #BMW-E46 / #BMW-3-Series-E46 / #BMW-3-Series / #BMW-3-Series-E46/5
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    Simon George
    Simon George joined the group BMW E46 3-series Club
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    Lamborghini Murciélago With one Scandinavian trip cut short but another in the offing, the big Lambo is also gearing up for a close-up down under.

    Date acquired September 2004 Lamborghini Murciélago
    Total mileage 267,838
    Mileage this month 1331
    Costs this month £225 oil and filter mpg this month 14.5

    / #2004 / #Lamborghini-Murcielago / #Lamborghini / #Lamborghini-V12 / #V12 / #2004-Lamborghini-Murcielago /

    With the exceptionally hot weather this summer it’s been interesting to see the rear-mounted ‘bat wings’ on the Murciélago almost permanently in the raised position – something I’ve seen only very rarely in the UK. On past trips to warmer climes I’ve clocked that they usually rise up to aid cooling only when the outside temperature reaches about 29deg C. Travelling south during summer on the continent they invariably make an appearance when passing the French city of Lyon, staying raised from there on until reaching Lyon once again on the trip back.

    They certainly weren’t seen in action in beautiful but bitterly cold Norway, which is where I last reported on the Murciélago from. I actually called time on that trip a day prematurely because the heater called it quits. After catching the ferry back to Frederikshavn in northern Denmark I endured a rotten journey south late at night: sea mist hanging thick in the air and no street lighting or catseyes. It wasn’t fun and I was glad to cross the German border near Flensburg some 220 miles later, where I bunked up for what remained of the night. I promise I’ll never complain about UK motorways again…

    That stretch and the horrific road-works around Hamburg aside, I enjoyed my Scandinavian road-trip experience immensely – so much so that by the time you read this the big Lambo and I will be back there again. This time, however, the plan is to miss out Denmark (nothing personal – the Murcie and I just have a thing for car ferries) by planting the Lamborghini’s rubber on the boat that travels from the German port of Kiel directly to Oslo in Norway, before taking up where I left off last time. I’ll let you know how it goes soon.

    Talking of travel, another epic trip is looming courtesy of a US film production company. During October the Murciélago will be strapped inside a Maersk shipping container before docking a couple of months later in Nelson. That’s not Nelson in Lancashire, you understand, but Nelson, New Zealand. The movie company had been looking for a Murciélago SV to star in the first few minutes of the remake of an early 1980s classic – the original also having a certain V12 Lamborghini in it. I’m not actually privy to which movie it is yet, but I don’t think it’s that difficult to guess. Let’s just say that back then the Lamborghini in question sported a huge rear wing (and a dreadful front-mounted one, too) plus a set of carburettors and had two particularly attractive female occupants.

    Apparently no SV owners were willing to have their pride and joy cross the Pacific in a metal box (not surprising really given SVs are now exceptionally serious money), so SG54 LAM will be transformed into an SV lookalike complete with an enormous rear wing, wider side skirts and a glass engine lid. However, rest assured it will be returned to standard afterwards, the wing possibly becoming a useful garden ornament.

    Unfortunately, I’m unlikely to be behind the wheel during filming (I look awful in a jumpsuit) but I hopefully won’t be far away either, since the plan is then to add another two or three thousand miles of Kiwi roads to the Murciélago’s long-suffering V12. It’ll soon be ready for clutch number eight at this rate… Simon George

    Above: the Lambo’s active air intakes have been called into action a lot this year; bodywork will soon be given an SV-like makeover – with good reason.
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    Lamborghini Murciélago. It’s still on the road, even through winter – but it has a strong rival on cold mornings…

    Date acquired September #2004 / #Lamborghini-Murcielago / #Lamborghini / #Lamborghini-V12 / #V12 / #2004-Lamborghini-Murcielago /

    It’s been some time since I last wrote a report on ‘Trigger’s Broom’, but I’m told evo’s readers keep asking after the quarter-million-mile (and rising) Lambo, so here’s an update on how it’s been fairing since its nut and bolt rebuild.

    Despite a few small teething problems since the wide Pirellis were reacquainted with tarmac early last year, I’m pleased to report the Murciélago is running amazingly well. Of course, being an old-school supercar it still possesses an obstinate dislike for second gear, which it refuses to engage when cold, despite the whole ’box being rebuilt in not so ancient times. I learnt many moons ago to simply ignore this cog and skip straight to third – something I still do subconsciously.

    Although winter is now in full swing, the Lambo is still accumulating miles at a steady rate; it’s wearing winter rubber and thankfully the recent new heater works perfectly. That said, since it and a #Range-Rover-Sport-SDV8 that I also run never ever see the inside of a garage, it takes some real enthusiasm on a frosty morning to press the unlock button on the remote for the Murciélago, rather than that for the Range Rover, before embarking on my 90-minute commute.

    This is probably something to do with the fact that the #Range-Rover can preheat its sumptuous interior for half an hour before I get into it and will waft onto the M1 with seamless gearchanges and a near-silent soundtrack. There’s a definite appeal there, certainly next to climbing into a freezing Lamborghini before fighting a stone-cold ’box with no second gear and wondering what mood it’ll be in today.

    Regular readers may remember that, when the Murciélago was first test driven following the rebuild, I was still a tad concerned that it might not track in a straight line given its prior severe chassis damage. I need not have worried – not only does it point its short nose where it should with accuracy, it’s also tremendously smooth to drive. Coupled with that wonderful rising and falling V12 soundtrack orchestrated by the manual ’box (when it’s warm), it’s just heaven. Sure, it’s not got the outright pace of today’s exotica, but I enjoy the effort required to perfectly synchronise the long manual throw with the equally long travel of the clutch. Beats a paddleshift hands down.

    So to say I’m pleased with what’s been achieved with this Murciélago is an understatement. No, it’s not quite perfect yet. The rear spoiler gets stuck in the upright position (very common), small parts of the leather trim are still waiting to be replaced, and the badly worn symbols on the petrol cap release will stay worn, as will the faded exterior V12 badge – both as a nod to the car’s past.

    Business commitments meant I never did get to take it to Italy last year as planned, but since I’ve always fancied touring Scandinavia, I’m now plotting to drive it north to Sweden, via Germany and Denmark, during 2018. I’m now confident enough in the car’s reliability to keep piling on the miles indefinitely. And, let’s face it, I’m way beyond having to worry about depreciation!

    Simon George (@6gearexperience)

    Date acquired September 2004
    Total mileage 262,334
    Mileage this month 1066
    Costs this month £130 oil change
    Mpg this month 13.0

    ‘You’re fighting a stonecold ’box with no second gear and wondering what mood it’ll be in today’
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    Right: steering wheel and dash have been retrimmed in Alcantara; Simon George is looking forward to putting them to the test soon.

    Date acquired September 2004 / #Lamborghini-Murcielago / #Lamborghini / #Lamborghini-V12 / #V12 / #2004
    Total km 415,280
    Km this month 0
    Costs this month TBC
    L/100km this month n/a

    Lamborghini Murciélago Its refreshed interior is ready for action, but the mid-mounted V12 is not

    It’s been a frustrating few-months for ‘Trigger’s Broom’, which has been struggling with an electrical issue with its engine, thereby delaying its long-awaited return to the road. Lamborghini’s Manchester dealership has therefore become the Murciélago’s second home whilst its technicians try to get to the bottomof why the car’s once mighty #V12-engined has become a limp in-line six.

    As regular readers will know, the Lambo lost an argument with an oak tree back in November 2012, which left it (the car, not the tree) damaged way beyond economical repair. Being the sentimental sort, I chose to embark upon a nut and bolt rebuild all the same, and three years later the car has more replacement parts fitted than original, so its nickname has never been more apt!

    Somewhat ironically, after the aforementioned catastrophic incident the Murciélago’s engine still ran sweetly, but somewhere along its road to recovery the main bus fuse was blown and the 426kW V12 lost a bank of six cylinders.

    Electrical gremlins can take many hours to nail down in Italian supercars, and despite changing all the ECUs and investigating myriad other theories, the problem has not yet been solved. Now a systematic testing of every part of the wiring loom is in progress, so hopefully I’ll hear some good news – and the sound of 12 cylinders running smoothly – soon.

    On a more positive note, the Lambo’s interior has recently been refreshed and updated by having the dashboard and steering wheel re-covered in Alcantara. It really looks the part and will hopefully reduce the reflections in the Murciélago’s huge windscreen. I look forward to finding out shortly, not least because my goal is to hit 500,000km by the end of 2017. More news soon.

    The 6.2-litre 426kW V12 has lost a bank of six cylinders.
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    Simon George

    Lamborghini Murciélago Open Group

    Lamborghini Murciélago 2001-2010

    View Group →
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    Simon George
    Simon George unlocked the badge Reviewer
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    Italian? Check. V12? Check. Orange? Check. This Aventador ticked all the boxes for a place on Simon George’s supercar experience fleet. And it means he also has a new daily driver.

    NEW ARRIVAL #Lamborghini-Aventador-LP700-4 / #Lamborghini-Aventador / #Lamborghini / #2016 / #Lamborghini-V12 / #V12

    Date acquired April #2016
    Total km 38,653
    Km this month 911
    Costs this month $0
    L/100km this month 22.0

    For most businesses, sinking the best part of three quarters of a million dollars into new machinery is a pretty significant decision. When that machinery happens to be a #V12-engined #Lamborghini , it’s one you want to be particularly sure of.

    Only a tiny minority of the 6th Gear Experience’s 45,000 annual customers are actually petrolheads. The overwhelming majority are members of the public who have been bought a driving experience as a gift. This means most aren’t quite sure which supercar is which, although a Ferrari has to be red and any Aston Martin is usually associated with James Bond. That said, there are some cars that most customers instantly recognise as something special. The Ferrari 458 Italia is one, a big V12 Lambo another. Anything with doors that go upwards always goes down a storm. Throw in a bright colour and you have the pulling power of a bikini-clad Kelly Brook stood amongst a line of smartly attired fashion models.

    Enter the Aventador LP700-4. Another Sant’Agata supercar had been on the cards for some time. Prices, though, have recently firmed up, with even the earliest Aventadors seldom dropping below $600,000 (they cost $760K new).

    It was a tip-off through a main dealer that led us to LJ12 KJZ, which was a bit leggy at 38,000km but had a full Lamborghini service history complete with every invoice. And it was the right colour and sported a plain black interior. Not my personal preference, but spot-on for what we needed it for. Additionally, the carbon-ceramic brakes had recently been replaced at an eyewatering $30,000. Regular readers may remember my thoughts on ceramics, which work well for an owner who is familiar with how they behave but are not ideal for use by a customer who isn’t – and that’s even with an experienced instructor in the passenger seat with their own stop pedal. So whether the ceramics stay, we’ll have to see.

    After a lengthy inspection, a deal was struck at $590,000 and within 24 hours our new leviathan was negotiating its way at speed around Castle Combe. And I really do mean speed – 515kW propels just 1575kg for a power-to-weight ratio that matches a Carrera GT’s.

    First impressions? It’s difficult to write anything that hasn’t been said before, of course, but compared with the Murciélagos we have run in the past, the Aventador unsurprisingly feels punchier, although both models seem to have almost identical all-wheel-drive handling characteristics. I’m guessing that with its more modern driver aids it’ll look after you better than the older car in a crisis, too. It’ll be interesting to see how the Aventador copes on a wet track. On the road it certainly generates overwhelming attention, which as many supercar owners will confirm is great at first but can become tiring in the long term.

    With the imminent return (yes, I know, I’ve been saying this for months) of the monster-mileage Murciélago, too, it looks like the future is bright. Orange, too…
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    Simon George
    Simon George joined the group Lamborghini Aventador
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