• Jul 10, 2007
The Lamborghini Countach was everywhere in the 1980s. It was so often presented as the ultimate car, photographed with celebrities, and generally placed in the spotlight that even your grandmother could've recognized it. Because of its vaunted status, the Countach is an aspirational car that you might purchase to celebrate a milestone in your life. Oregonian Marlowe Treit spent two years tracking down the perfect Countach as a way of marking 60 years on the planet.

In May of 2006, Marlowe's 1985 Countach had an unfortunate meeting with an FBI-leased Cessna 206 at the Aurora, Oregon airport where Treit owns a business. The NTSB has investigated the incident and blames both the plane's pilot and Treit for not noticing each other. Nevertheless, the shredded Italian exotic will cost a considerable amount to repair or replace, and Treit is suing the United States for $105,500, claiming that the Cessna pilots had a clear view of his vehicle, and should have yielded the right of way. We can understand the heartache that having your dream car mangled must cause, but it looks like an uphill battle for Mr. Treit, with the NTSB essentially declaring the event as a "no-fault" accident. The big question we've got is will Mr. Treit replace his Countach with a Diablo, Gallardo, or Murcielago should he win? We'd probably go for an Islero, Jarama, or Series III Espada. Check out a video interview of Treit after the jump.

[Source: The Oregonian via All Cars All The Time]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 9 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      This guy claims $100,000 in damages. The damn thing in mint condition isn't worth $90,000. It's a COUNTACH, not a Miura.
      • 7 Years Ago
      200 miles in eight years. Might as well chop it up.
      • 7 Years Ago
      How can ANYONE miss a freakin' AIRPLANE on the ground? It's not a no-fault accident. It's an all-fault collision.

      TopGear ruined this car for me. It was a dream car until they pointed out its many flaws. I stopped watching TG after that, preferring to keep my dream cars in high standing. Well, that, and the show really does suck.
      • 7 Years Ago
      countach was my first favorite exotic.

      This story hurt me, but what hurt even more was how you can let a plane taxi into your lamborghini at 5 mph. hello? Accelerator? Steering wheel? brake? any of these could have helped avoid this crash.
      "Common sense is not so common"
      • 7 Years Ago
      Technically, the NTSB is completely correct in their assesment that both are at fault. However, first, a very low-slung vehicle like a Lambo can be difficult to see over the cowling of an aircraft, especially one with a larger engine cowling like a Cessna 206.

      Second, in the article, Treit asserts he had the right of way. Wrong. Both the FARs and common sense dictates that taxiing aircraft always have the right of way, due to visibility issues involved in taxing and other concerns. Proper procedure dictates that the operator of ground vehicle halts and waits until receiving visual or audible (via radio, typically) indication from the pilot of an aircraft before proceeding in front of that aircraft.As both a pilot and someone who worked the ramp for two years at a busy general aviation airport, I can't tell you how many times we had close calls with folks unfamilar with either the airport or procedures in general. Even if a passenger or someone not at the controls of the aircraft waved me across, I always waited for the PILOT to see, acknowledge, and allow me to proceed. There have been times when people in and out of vehicles have darted in front of my aircraft, too. It boggles the mind how some of these people weren't even stranges but tenants who themselves were pilots and had aircraft based at the field.

      Lastly - and this is just a personal observation - Treit seems like one of those cocky pilots-by-occasion who rarely fly, but instead keeps their hanger full of expensive toys that they like to show off to others around the field. If he actually is an active pilot rather than one simply owns an airplane and is licensed but hasn't flown in eighteen months, then I would suggest to him recurrent ground instruction on taxi procedures. It is literally one of the FIRST things you learn.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Doh!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Funny but I've always thought that one of the problems with this car is that it's damn hard to see out of. Should have gotten an NSX.
      • 7 Years Ago
      They were on a pot training exercise.They use those non descript planes to spot growers fields.