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Here's Why This Lamborghini Murcielago Is Worth $200,000 (Or More)

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author photo by Doug DeMuro December 2016

I recently had the opportunity to drive a 2008 Lamborghini Murcielago LP640, which is the automotive equivalent of getting poked in the face by a cattle brand.

I selflessly decided to drive this vehicle so that I could answer a question for you, the readers of Oversteer, who have selected me as your representative to drive exotic cars and answer questions. The question, in this case, is: Why is the Murcielago still worth so much money?

I mean, seriously. The oldest Murcielago is now 13 years old, and those early models are still worth well over $100,000. The 2008 LP640 I drove is still worth $215,000 -- or more -- which means it's retained 70 percent of its value after eight years on the road. Seventy percent! After eight years! A normal car retains something like 25 percent of its value after eight years. Even a normal exotic car doesn't retain 70 percent of its value after eight years, unless it's one of those Ferrari supercars you can only buy if you've owned every single other Ferrari and at least two pairs of Ferrari underwear.

So how is this possible?

Well, I spent a lot of time in the Murcielago, and here's the conclusion I've come to: This car is just absolutely, ridiculously, wildly insane. In terms of insanity, this car is approximately equivalent to those people in YouTube videos who attempt to jump from their roofs to their swimming pools, even though it's tremendously clear they'll fall short and break their faces.

I'm not going to start with the LP640's performance, but rather its appearance. Have you seen one of these things before? It's just ridiculous. It looks like the kind of thing science fiction movie producers would commission George Barris to build before rejecting it because it's not believable enough. And while other modern Lamborghinis still retain the same basic ridiculous shape as this car, virtually no other vehicles even come close. Park this thing next to an Aston Martin and the Aston will inspire the same amount of excitement people give to store-brand itch cream.

So then you open up that giant scissor door, which is wholly unnecessary and serves only to remind other people that their lives aren't as good as yours, and it hits you: all the crazy.

Allow me to explain what I mean. Several years ago, when I owned a Ferrari and I invited people to take a ride in it, they would almost invariably get inside and say something like: This isn't really as crazy as I was expecting. Well, that sentence has never left the mouth of someone who got inside a Murcielago.

For instance: You can't help but notice that the seats are angled ever so slightly toward the middle of the car, rather than directly forward. The outside mirrors aren't oval-shaped, but rather completely rectangular. You're sitting inches below anyone in a Camry and feet below anyone in a RAV4. The view to the sides is awful, while the view to the rear primarily reveals the three flat pieces of glass that cover the engine. And the sound is wildly loud -- even at idle.

And then there's the litany of weird features -- like the transmission, which has three buttons, only two of which have any function. Or the fact that the Murcielago comes with dozens of beeping noises, chimes and warnings that sound whenever you do anything, including put it in reverse, or -- GASP! -- open the door when it's unlocked.

And now we can discuss performance. Although the Murcielago seems to handle well, I primarily spent my time driving it on the highway, largely because this allows you to really open it up. And open it up I did, with my foot to the floor, pulling the shift paddles for each successive gear -- right up until I reached the legal speed limit of 55 miles per hour, of course.

Acceleration -- as you might imagine, considering this thing has 632 horsepower -- is hilariously fast. Knock-you-back-in-your-seat fast. And when you accelerate, you hear this unbelievable noise brewing in the back that reminds you, just in case you've somehow forgotten, that you're the closest most of these everyday road users will come to interacting with a movie villain. Watch the video and you can see my reactions to the acceleration: It's brutally, hilariously fast, and every sound the engine makes just contributes to the thrill of driving this thing.

And so, we must now return to the original question, which is: Why is the Murcielago still worth so much money? After spending several hours with this LP640, I have an answer: Because in today's world of neutered, watered-down cars -- and even neutered, watered-down exotic cars -- the Murcielago is sort of the last bridge to the old era of Italian supercars.

No, it's not on the level of a Countach, where it might leave you stranded every time you take it out, and where it's easier to open the door to see what's behind you than try to see out the windows. But the Murcielago wasn't designed exactly with concern for comfort, or usability, or practicality, or ease of operation. It was designed with one basic purpose in mind: Thrill. To thrill people who see it when you park it somewhere. To thrill people who see it when you drive it down the highway. To thrill people who see it when you bring it to a car show. And, most importantly, to thrill you every single time you turn the key.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Here's Why This Lamborghini Murcielago Is Worth $200,000 (Or More) - Autotrader