The Infamous Lamborghini Design 90 Motorcycle
By Zlatan Stankovic on March 13, 2018
Nowadays, Lamborghini is one of the leaders in the supercar market, and that’s because they produce vehicles with iconic designs, luxurious interiors and phenomenal performance. But, they haven’t always been so successful…
Back in the 80s, a financial crisis led to the removal of Feruccio Lamborghini from the company and opened the door for the Mimran Brothers to take control. With a desperate desire to turn the tide, the new owners explored every option which could potentially drive revenue through the roof. After entering the boat and SUV markets, they finally encountered the motorcycle niche.
However, instead of utilizing their own factory, they sought the help of the French bike maker – Boxer – to create a motorbike that would earn them thousands. After reaching an agreement, the joint venture known as Design 90 eventually began in 1986. Underneath the shell, the bike was incredible.
It had a 1000cc inline-4 Kawasaki engine that generated 130 BHP, lightweight wheels and an alloy fuel tank. Additionally, it was kitted out with premium suspension, exhaust, brake and electric parts, with the whole thing only weighing 400 pounds. But, the fiberglass bodywork that formed the shell left a lot to be desired; it was ‘different’ to say the least.
Both Boxer and Lamborghini felt the bike would fetch them $13,000, which was an extortionate price back in those days, and they expected to sell 25 of them. Once they released the bike, they realized that interest wasn’t going to be as high as they thought, with only six selling before they decided to cease production. Right now, only five of those bikes still exist.
In fact, one of them recently went to auction in the UK, with the owner hoping to snatch $124,000. Unfortunately, the bidding didn’t even reach the reserve price of $58,800, which suggests people still aren’t a fan of the Design 90. But, even though the aesthetics are nothing short of appalling, the Kawasaki engine and all the magnificent parts show that Lamborghini have always placed attention on performance. Luckily, they’ve mastered both with their cars! Photos: H and H Auctions and CarThrottle.com