Automakers come and go from Italy’s “supercar valley” – the area between Modena and Bologna that’s home today to Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini, and Pagani. From 1959 through the 1990s, that included De Tomaso as well.
Alejandro de Tomaso left this world in 2003, far too young at age 74. But before he left his namesake company behind, he commissioned one last concept. And now that concept car is coming up for auction.
It was called the Nuova Pantera or the Pantera 2000, and it was designed by the inimitable Marcello Gandini – the same talent who penned the Lamborghini Countach, Lancia Stratos, Alfa Romeo Montreal, and Bugatti EB110 (to name just a few of his most notable creations).
De Tomaso was already well acquainted with Gandini, whom he had hired to revise the original Pantera in 1991, pen the Mangusta (eventually made by Qvale), and design several Maseratis and Innocentis during De Tomaso’s stewardship of those marques as well.
The Pantera concept was shown to a crowd of 500 gathered for the automaker’s 40th anniversary celebration in 1999, then disappeared into obscurity. One of two prototypes made and the only known survivor, its design was said to have influenced the Bugatti Veyron’s, and you can see a certain similarity to the profile and rear buttresses.
With no interior, engine, or actual running gear, the mock-up can’t actually be driven, so it’s limited to display. But we’re sure some enthusiast of the marque will snap it up when the gavel drops next month in London at RM Sotheby’s, which commissioned Tim Scott to capture these images for your perusal.