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1971 - 1991 De Tomaso Pantera

1971 - 1991 De Tomaso Pantera

Italian style, American V-8 grunt

Italian sports car manufacturer De Tomaso has a wide variety of models to its name, but when it comes to commercial success and brand association, there’s one that clearly stands above the rest – the Pantera. With a production life spanning two decades, the Pantera (Italian for panther) managed to transform De Tomaso from an eccentric, niche make, to a full-fledged high-volume supercar producer. But the Pantera was more than a vitally important model for De Tomaso. Its introduction in the early ‘70s challenged conventions by offering striking aesthetics and an exotic mid-engine layout, plus American-bred V-8 performance and a relatively affordable price tag.

These days, the cult of Pantera is as strong as ever, and well-maintained examples are known for hitting the auction block for 10 times the original MSRP. But the Pantera’s popularity isn’t derived from anything objective – it doesn’t come with a purebred lineage, or groundbreaking technology, or unicorn-like rarity. Rather, it’s the kind of car that speaks to an enthusiast’s emotions, and if you need someone to explain it to you, you probably wouldn’t get it anyway.

Continue reading to learn more about the 1971 – 1991 De Tomaso Pantera.

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1971 De Tomaso Pantera ADRNLN by Ringbrothers

1971 De Tomaso Pantera ADRNLN by Ringbrothers

The Pantera is maybe one of the coolest sports cars produced by De Tomaso in early 1970s. In Italian, "Pantera" stands for "Panther" and indeed it was like a wild cat. Pantera impressed the world ever since it was unveiled in March 1970 and it shortly became a hit, forcing De Tomaso to increase production to three units a day.

Production of the Pantera stopped in 1991, and since then people have been hoping for its rebirth. However, until that that day comes — if ever — we’ll have to stick to a vehicle specially designed by Ringbrothers for the 2013 SEMA show.

Called "ADRNLN," this custom buggy is basically a re-imagined Pantera with modern technology and developed in cooperation with Nike’s innovation skunk works team.

The new Pantera ADRNLN is stuffed with modern features, like a Wegner Motorsports LS3 engine that delivers 600 horsepower and a ZF five-speed gearbox from Bowler Performance Transmissions. The car sits on HRE forged wheels wrapped in Nitto tires, and a set of Baer brakes with six-piston calipers at each corner do the stopping. The model was built on a steel monocoque body finished by BASF’s Glasurit 90-Line paint system.

This model also has quite a touching history, as it was originally owned by Randy Brickle who was diagnosed with cancer and passed away. His dream was to restore his beloved Pantera, and his wife Cheryl made his dream come true by way of the folks at Ringbrothers.

We’ll bring you more details once the car is officially unveiled.

Click past the jump to read more about the standard De Tomaso Pantera.

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2012 De Tomaso Pantera

2012 De Tomaso Pantera

The Pantera (Italian word for Panther) was a very successful sports car produced by De Tomaso between 1971 to 1991. Since its demise, many people have undoubtedly been dreaming of what a modern day Pantera would look like. In fact, Stefan Schulze even made up his own modern interpretation of the Pantera based on a Lamborghini Gallardo in an attempt to persuade De Tomaso to produce the car once again. Whether it was this rendering four years ago or the hum of eager fans, De Tomaso has decided that it is now time to bring back the catty beast to wreck havoc on our hearts once again.

The new Pantera is said to make its world debut in November at the Los Angeles Auto Show, almost exactly 40 years after the car was first launched on the market. Our only hope is that the sports car will look better than the DeAuville SUV that was just launched at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.

The original Pantera was powered by a V8 engine with an output of 330 HP, but rumors say that the new version will get a V8 engine with an impressive 550 HP. Here’s to hoping!

UPDATE 05/04/2011: Is that you, Pantera? YouTube member, Tappazzo, seemed to be at the right place at the right time when he caught a few seconds of video of what looks to be the future Pantera outside of DeTomaso’s Grugliasco plant in Italy. Could it be? Is it true? Take one look at that front end in the video after the jump and let us know what you think!

UPDATE 07/12/11: Circle your calendars, folks! The new De Tomaso Pantera is scheduled to be introduced at the 2011 IAA’s in Frankfurt in September! The model will weight about 2645 lbs and will be powered by a 600 HP Chevrolet Corvette V8. It’s been a long time coming, but we expect the wait to be worth it and more!

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