My Car Quest

December 3, 2020

The Lamborghini Espada Dashboard

by Mike Gulett –

In the ten year run of the Lamborghini Espada and three different series producing a total of 1,217 cars there were relatively few design styling changes, which is surprising considering how other car companies change car styles on a regular basis.

The three Espada series were produced in these years: S1 (1968–1970), S2 (1970–1972) and S3 (1972–1978). They all look pretty much the same from the outside. Most of the updates were on the interior, with only minor changes to the exterior.

Most followers of Lamborghini would probably say the big change to the Espada over the three series is the dashboard. Certainly one way to identify if an Espada is a Series 1, 2 or 3 is to look in the window at the dashboard design.

There were other style changes over the years. The Series 1 and 2 had Campagnolo alloys on knock-off hubs, the same as on the Miura. The Series 3 had five bolt Campagnolo alloys. On the Series 2 the grille covering the vertical glass tail panel was deleted because it was difficult to see out of. The radio antenna was moved from the fender to the roof at some point.

Espada Dashboard

The Series 1 dashboard was inspired by the Marzal concept car, which had octagonal housings for the main instruments, topped by an additional binnacle for the secondary gauges.

Lamborghini Espada Series 1 Dashboard

Lamborghini Espada Series 1 Dashboard

Notice that the radios on the Series 1 above and the Series 2 below are located far out of reach of the driver right in front of the front seat passenger, if there is a front seat passenger.

Lamborghini Espada Series 2 Dashboard

Lamborghini Espada Series 2 Dashboard – The Author’s Espada

The photo above is my Espada dashboard with a different layout than the Series 1. This is one of the best dashboard layouts I have seen with everything within easy reach or sight of the driver except for the radio which is in the same location as the Series 1.

Lamborghini Espada Series 2 Entertainment System

Lamborghini Espada Series 2 Entertainment System- The Author’s Espada

I believe that the entertainment system in my Esapda is original and yes it has an eight track tape player in addition to the AM/FM radio. It is still out of reach of the driver, so driving alone and using the entertainment system is a problem. Is pulling over to the side of the road to change the radio station or tape what we really want?

When the Series 3 was introduced Lamborghini moved the radio, see the photo below.

Lamborghini Espada Series 3 Dashboard

Lamborghini Espada Series 3 Dashboard

Now the radio is within easy reach of the driver, just to the left of the steering wheel, but completely out of reach of any passenger.

Why did Lamborghini do that? My guess is they had customer complaints about the driver not being able to reach the entertainment system, so they fixed that. But now the driver is the only one who can reach it and maybe some drivers like it that way.

If anyone knows why Lamborghini did this please let me know.

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Lamborghini Espada

Summary
The Lamborghini Espada Dashboard
Article Name
The Lamborghini Espada Dashboard
Description
Notice that the radio on the Lamborghini Espada Series 1 and 2 is located far out of reach of the driver right in front of the front seat passenger.
Author

Comments

  1. My Grifo has the same inconvenient radio location. But who’s listening to the radio?

    • Byron,

      You are right! I forgot that the radio on my first Grifo was in front of the passenger. My second Grifo did not have a radio. I did not use the radio either.

  2. Ken Phillips says

    When it comes to unusual dash layouts, the early Bizzarrini at the top of your site has one of the best
    The ” Lusso ” ( as in the Ferrari Lusso ) dash with the instruments including tac and speedometer, strung out along the the dash seemed really odd the first time I drove a Lusso.
    And car magazines testors of the day would question the layout.
    But for owners , we quicky got used to it.
    Then when I drove a later Bizzarrini that Dr. Bizzarrini had changed the dash to clump all the instruments in a raised binicle in front of the driver due to the comments , I was shocked at the brilliance of the much LOWER ENTIRE DASH of the Lusso alternative.
    I much preferred the “odd” Lusso ” layout for my own cars.

    • Ken,

      I agree with you. The Bizzarrini GT 5300 Series 1 (aka Lusso) interior is near perfect. The ignition key is in the dash to the left of the steering wheel and the gauges important to a race car driver are right in front of the driver. The dash is beautiful because of its simplicity, only a narrow chrome strip adorns this purposeful dashboard.

      • Don Meluzio says

        Mike, if you remember my Bizzarrini has my radio over my shoulder in the back deck. Very hard to use. I think I turned the radio on once! That’s #295

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