Kit cars are interesting if only to delve into the insane mindset of the person who builds one. It’s the Canal Street handbag that everyone can spot from a mile away - but not always. Sometimes fakes like this Lamborghini LP640 replica are so convincing that they’ll take several once-overs to let you know that you just got rick rolled.
This Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 Roadster replica is something that didn’t start life an a 1988 Toyota MR2 or Fiero - it’s a custom-built tube chassis and fiberglass/carbon fiber body by NAERC, a company that went out of business allegedly for building cars that were too close to the real thing.
No, this isn’t SuperReplicas or some scam, these are $100,000 replicas of $150,000 cars. This example looks almost exactly like an actual LP640 roadster except for the fact that it houses a supercharged 4.6 liter Cadillac Northstar V8 engine with a 6-speed Porsche transmission driving the rear wheels.
While it’s a far cry from the 600+ horsepower behemoth V12, it’s not a gutless powerplant, and although I don’t think that it’s what you would call reliable, it did put down some respectable power figures, as evidenced by the description:
4.6L brand new Cadillac north star with a 4.4l north star supercharger producing 450HP at the Crank and 400 hp at the wheels. Dyno sheet is available upon request. in the video the car made 367HP to the wheels and we found the weakest link was the stock pressure plate and clutch disk. Since it was replaced by a Sachs sports unit and it is giving US another 30-35 HP to the wheels.
A brand new Porsche cayman S 6 speed transmission with Sachs sports clutch kit. This car has many OEM components steering wheel, tail lights all the grills rims ETC The car comes with a front air bag assisting the car to be lifted 1.5 inches to clear the steep drive ways and speed bumps. it has a Navigation system with blue tooth and rear view camera built in the same unit as in the original car. This car is equipped with three high performance 4 core radiators to keep the engine cool and it also has 2 radiators to keep the supercharger cool.
Now here’s a dose of reality: This car, while it does resemble an LP640, is not a real Lamborghini and at the time of writing, it has bids on it of $49,000. That’s within spitting distance of salvage titled Murcielago that you could likely fix and still retain all of its inherent Lambo-ness.
This is not a car for resale. It’s not a car that will win races against other supercars, it’s simply something to drive around and look back at, knowing in the back of your head that while you may fool others, you’re not fooling yourself. It’s definitely worth a look, if only for the awesome engineering involved, but I’d stay away from any replicas as car you’d actually like to drive.
Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes and makes videos about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world’s cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he’s the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn’t feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.