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Touring the Lamborghini Factory again


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large_5550_14720646996011.jpgModena's main square. Yep, there's a bit of a lean in the tower.
We woke up to messages enquiring on our safety, as there had been an earthquake in central Italy. We wouldn't have known otherwise until seeing the TV at the hotel breakfast. We left the hotel around 1000 for a 40 min drive to Ferrari’s other museum in Modena [Modena-travel-guide-277891] (rather than Maranello). Again, I sat outside the museum while Kim enjoyed the exhibits inside. After his visit, we had a time to drive into the centre ofModena for a little look; quite literally about 3 minutes as parking was difficult.

Our appointment for the Lamborghini factory tour was at 1500. We had time to grab lunch in Sant’Agata, Lamborghini’s hometown. It was holiday season in Italy and like many places, Sant’Agata was dead quiet.large_5550_14720647037590.jpgLamborghini Museum. No photos permitted during factory tour.

We found a place that had pictures of lasagne, cannelloni etc. There were some Lamborghini staff there plus quite a few slot machines. The slots were manned by an Italian man while two Chinese women ran the eatery section.Unfortunately the meals turned out to be of the heat-and-eat meals in cardboard tubs (with the clear plastic taken off before they were presented to us). They were actually nice enough but still disappointing.

It was one minute from the town centre to the factory where we explored the museum before the tour. For a change, I went into the museum as it was included in the complimentary tour that been arranged for Kim (being an owner). The museum visit is normally EUR15 and the factory tour some very high price undoubtedly.

The young lady that took us for the 45 min tour had a good sense of humour.large_5550_14720647064817.jpgLamborghini Museum. No photos permitted during factory tour.After leaving our cameras and bags in lockers, we were taken through to the Aventador (rather than the Huracan) assembly line. The line consisted of 12 stations each with 80 minutes allocated to it. The time allocation is generous and staff can take unscheduled breaks once they have completed their assembly tasks.So, the time to build the car is essentially 12 x 80 minutes plus rest breaks and overnight/weekends.

We were lucky enough to see the cars progress from one station to another all simultaneously. The car that popped out the last station had to be towed away as something had gone wrong and it wouldn’t start!

From the assembly line, we visited the upholstery area. This was the only place we could touch anything. We were able to feel the sample of the leather (and the more lightweight synthetic option, the alcantara).large_5550_14720647017004.jpgLamborghini Museum. No photos permitted during factory tour.Eagle-eyed women mark out leather defects and machines cut the required shapes automatically-avoiding the marked defects. These are then glued on to the hard surfaces or stitched into seat covers.

The tour is now a commercial affair compared to 14 years ago when we were taken through by a manager who lived-and-breathed Lamborghini. In comparison, today’s guide while still passionate but the tours were “a job”. Looking back at my old travel journal, they produced 1.5 cars per day but now they produce 16 cars a day!

I enjoyed the factory tour very much. More so than the people working there. They didn’t look very happy but then, they do have rather repetitive roles.

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Posted by alexchan 17:00 Archived in Italy

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