Lamborghini: the Italian company with Spanish model names.

Cover photo by Sundesh Chaudhary from Pexels

Lamborghini is an Italian auto manufacturer, but their model names are Spanish. Why is that?

Lamborghinis have Spanish names because the model names are Spanish bullfighting terms.

The tradition of drawing from the sport of bullfighting for model names gives the Lamborghini brand character and heritage. The ‘corrida de toros’ model names link back to the famous fighting bull front and center on the Lamborghini emblem.

Spanish Bullfighting
Photo credit: Pablo Cobos

Lamborghini is Italian, but their models are named after Spanish bullfighting terms.

It is a tradition at Lamborghini to name models after phases from bullfighting. The Spanish style of bullfighting is, by far, the most popular form. Therefore, Lamborghini models names are Spanish words or names.

Most Lamborghini models are named after fighting bulls. For example, the Lamborghini Gallardo is named after one of the five historical lines of Spanish bulls, well known by fighting bull breeders.

Sometimes Lamborghini models are Spanish words, like the Espada, which translates to ‘sword.’ In bullfighting, a matador’s set of swords are critical to their fight.

Are Lamborghini’s still named after bulls?

Yes, Lamborghini models are still named after bulls. All models in the current Lamborghini lineup are named after famous Spanish fighting bulls.

  • The Lamborghini Huracácan is named after a bull who fought in 1879.
  • The Lamborghini Aventador is named after a bull who fought in the 1993 Zaragoza bullfight.
  • The Lamborghini Urus is names after the ancestral breed that became modern cattle.
Ferrucio Lamborghini leaning on a Lamborghini Jarama
Ferrucio Lamborghini leaning on a Lamborghini Jarama. Photo thanks to Wikipedia.

Ferruccio Lamborghini, the company’s founder, was enamoured with Spanish bullfighting.

Ferruccio Lamborghini was Italian by birth. In 1962, he visited a ranch in Seville, Spain, famous for breeding the Miura fighting bull. He watched the muscular bulls and found a kinship with them, maybe because Taurus was his astrological sign.

Ferrucio was so impressed with Spanish fighting bulls, or toro bravo, that he used a drawing of one as the emblem and eventually started naming the models after individual bulls, breeds, and Spanish terms associated with bullfighting.

The Origins of Each Lamborghini Model Name

Most of the Lamborghini models have Spanish bullfighting-inspired names, but not all. Many are breeds of bulls, some are specif bulls with historical significance, and others are Spanish words shared in the sport. 

Models Of Lamborghinis With Spanish Names

ModelOrigin of the Model Name
MiuraBreed of Spanish fighting bull
EspadaSpanish word for ‘sword’
IsleroName of the bull who killed Manolete, famous matador
JaramaArea of Spain
UrracoBreed of Spanish fighting bull
JalpaBreed of Spanish fighting bull
DiabloSpanish word for ‘devil’
MurciélagoName of a bull who survived the 1879 Córdoba bullfight
GallardoBreed of Spanish fighting bull
AventadorName of a bull who fought in the 1993 Zaragoza bullfight
HuracánName of a bull who fought in 1879
UrusAncestor breed, which became modern cattle

Models Without Spanish Names

  • 350 GT
  • 400 GT
  • LM002
  • Countach
  • Silhouette
  • SC20

Conclusion

The quirky Spanish names add to the heritage that makes Lamborghini special.

Most people would say what makes Lamborghini unique is the speed and style of the cars. But there are other manufacturers with fast cars, and there will always be upstart shops that make supercars that push performance. But they can never build a Lamborghini.

What makes Lamborghini unique is the heritage of the brand. The passion of the magnates and engineers over the years has stacked on top of each other. The brand has a history and consistency that adds up to that feeling of Lamborghini.

The tradition of giving the models names based on Spanish bullfighting is a unique quirk, and classic Lamborghini. It may be odd for an Italian brand to give its cars Spanish names, but it is way better than how every other automaker names their cars: with board room meetings and focus groups.