Launched at the Geneva Salon in 1968, the Islero was a development of the 400GT 2+2, which was itself derived from Ferruccio, Lamborghini's first production car, the touring-styled 350GT of 1964. The Islero's square-tube chassis was based on that of its predecessors, though with wider track to accommodate fatter rubber, while its elegantly understated coachwork was styled by ex-touring personnel led by Mario Marazzi. The model was named after the legendary bull that killed Spain's best matador, 'Manolete'. Housed beneath an impressively low-slung bonnet, Lamborghini's 4.0 litre V12 engine was carried over from the 400GT and produced 320bhp initially, 350bhp in later Islero S form. The latter appeared in 1969 and could be distinguished by its flared wheel arches, vented front wings and a revised interior with more supportive seats and improved instruments and switch gear. Improvements were also made to the suspension and brakes.
Car magazine's test Islero, achieved a true 157mph back in 1969, proving to be as quiet and stable at its maximum as at 130mph. It was also startlingly quick off the mark, hitting 60mph in 5.9 seconds and hurtling to 100mph in 13.7, outstanding figures even today. Around the Neapolitan backroads, the Islero demonstrated an agility and sureness of foot which belied its role as Grande Routière.
One of the 100 more powerful Islero S models built, this example was driven by Sir Roger Moore in the motion picture, 'The Man Who Haunted Himself'. It was Moore's last movie before taking over from Sean Connery as James Bond and is considered by many, Moore included, to be his best work. He played both Harold Pelham, a conventional city businessman, and his doppelganger, an urbane Bond-like individual. The latter drove this Islero, which served as a powerful representation of Pelham's alter ego throughout the film. When reunited with 'his' Islero a few years ago, Sir Roger autographed the sun visor, the original driver's handbook and a special plaque, all of which come with the car. Also included in the sale is the original factory invoice, a photographic record of the restoration and a letter from Lamborghini's legendary test driver, Valentino Balboni, confirming that ‘6432’ is the car used in the movie.
The factory invoiced the righthand drive chassis number 6432 on 31st March 1969 and the build details show that it was finished in metallic Azzurro Blue with grey Connolly leather interior. The UK sales invoice, dated 18th April 1969, was for £8,440, which included the 'S' engine and air conditioning. Registered YLR 11G (still retained to this day), the Lamborghini was first owned by Clifford Johnson, who sold it to racing driver Paul Weldon shortly after the movie was completed.
Its next owner, Phillip Richards, kept the car for 13 years.
In 1986, the car passed into the ownership of Brian Power, who despatched the car to Gantspeed Engineering where it underwent a no-expense-spared restoration at a cost of almost £100,000. Ferruccio Lamborghini had driven an Islero, and Mr. Power decided to have his refinished in that car's colour scheme of silver with burgundy leather trim. '6432' was next owned by a wealthy collector, who consigned the car to climate-controlled storage for some 20 years before selling it in 2007. Recommissioned by Brian Classic, the Islero was test driven by Martin Buckley for Classic & Sports Car magazine (July 2008 edition), who proclaimed it 'the best Lambo of the lot.'
The current vendor purchased this beautiful exotic sports car in 2012, since then it has been looked after by Colin Clarke Engineering and wanted for nothing. Dry stored by the present owner, the car remains in beautiful condition; the sumptuous leather interior is superb and still retains its original Blaupunkt Blue Spot radio, in working order, while the provision of modern adjustable shock absorbers means that the ride is superb. Offered with assorted paperwork, including various DVDs relating to Sir Roger Moore and the car, a photographic history of its restoration by Gantspeed Engineering and a considerable amount of invoices showing historical and recent work carried out.
The car also comes with a V5C registration document. Chassis 6432 represents a wonderful opportunity to acquire a matching numbers example of one of the most exclusive, limited edition early Lamborghinis, driven by Sir Roger Moore and in fabulous all-round condition. This surely must be one of the finest examples of this iconic Italian sports cars on the market today.