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Indian valet has a bad day, crashes Lamborghini

NEW DELHI -- A valet at a five-star hotel in the Indian capital caused US$335,000 worth of damage to a Lamborghini Gallardo after crashing it into a concrete wall in front of horrified guests, a report said Thursday.

A photograph of the aftermath at Le Meridien hotel, published in the Times of India newspaper, showed the severely crumpled front end of the sleek white supercar with its hood forced up.

“The car had been parked by valets a number of times before,” distressed driver Nipun Miglani told the newspaper, saying he had borrowed the Italian-made speedster from a friend and driven to the hotel last Thursday.

He has filed a police case against Le Meridien, which has refused to accept responsibility, as well as the valet, named as Arun Kumar. He claims the repairs have been estimated at 20 million rupees (US$335,000).

CCTV footage apparently showed the valet bring the car from the parking area to the porch of the multi-storey hotel, which hosts several glitzy restaurants and a bar, and then briefly get out.

After climbing back behind the wheel, he then lurches forward inexplicably, sending a colleague diving for cover before piling head-on into the wall, injuring himself in the process.

The rear-wheel-drive Gallardo, named after a type of fighting bull, is capable of a top speed of around 321 kilometers an hour (200 miles an hour) and has an engine packing more than 550 brake horsepower.

It sells in Europe for around US$250,000 but import duties on supercars normally double their price in India.

The valet was taken to hospital for treatment to his injuries but was discharged the same day, the Times of India said.

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