Save This Flooded 1999 Lamborghini Diablo VT Roadster From Its Watery Grave

We can rebuild it, we have the technology.

byJonathon Klein|
Lamborghini News photo


Older supercars tend to lead middling, garage-kept lives full of deferred maintenance, accumulating more dust than miles before one day bursting into a ball of fire on a Sunday drive. We’ve reported on such incidents with a regularity that keeps us up at night. This 1999 Lamborghini Diablo VT Roadster, however, saw the exact opposite kill its 5.7-liter V12: water.

Found on Copart, this 1999 Lamborghini Diablo VT Roadster is a rare bull indeed. As mentioned, it’s powered by a 5.7-liter naturally aspirated V12 engine which produced 530 horsepower and 446 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed manual transmission sent that power to both the front and rear wheels (VT for "Viscous Traction"), giving it the capability of hitting 60 mph in just four seconds and a top speed of 196 mph. 

The Drive via Copart

At the time of the Diablo VT Roadster’s birth, Lamborghini was a vastly different company and only produced a handful of cars each year, a far cry from the thousands it now shuffles out the doors of Sant’Agata. Only 100 Diablo VT Roadsters were built in 1999, making this salvage-titled Lamborghini a truly rare diamond in the rough. And we do mean rough.

According to Copart, this Satin Blue Diablo VT Roadster has seen a great deal of water damage, though the exact circumstances are unknown as Copart doesn’t mention how or when it took a swim. A slow flood seems likely given the lack of body damage—bummer. What's obvious is that the electrical in the Lamborghini is properly borked as Copart couldn’t even turn on accessory power to get a digital odometer reading.

The Drive via Copart

With such extensive damage, and water damage you’re likely not able to see based solely on the pictures provided (i.e. mold and fried electricals), this Lamborghini is going to need a full restoration to get it back into working order. And that’s going to be a pretty penny given that a working Diablo VT will set you back over $230,000

This Diablo VT Roadster currently has a New Jersey salvage title, though it’s now located in Las Vegas, Nevada. At the time of this writing, it has a current bid of just $2,350, though that likely won’t stand for too long due to its rarity.

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