"De TomasoВ» (De Tomaso Modena S. p. A.), an Italian company specializing in the production of sports cars. It headquartered in Modena.
The founder of company was the Argentine racing driver Alejandro de Tomaso. His first race car he built in 1958. A year later, in 1959, along with his second wife Isabel Hekkel, whose career has developed a very successful racer, De Tomaso created a company for the production of racing cars in Modena. In the same city his neighbors were already "Ferrari" and "Maserati ". De Tomaso threw himself into construction of his own racing cars and engines which are constantly competing with smaller companies such as "Cooper", "Lola" and "Lotus". He was able to not only pass, but through most of them.
"De Tomaso Automobili" company was founded in October 1959 by construction of В«Formula Junior" and "Formula 2" cars. The first sports car, designed for mass production, was introduced only in 1965.
De Tomaso company has worked closely with Ford since 1965 till the beginning of 1975. Later Innocenti (В«IRC") also included a "Maserati" joined De Tomaso S.p.A. In 1969 De Tomaso ordered to Gianpaolo Dallara to build a car for "Formula 2" racing, which later became the basis for Frank Williams Racing cars which next year participated in Formula 1 racing. The company began to produce exotic road cars with "Ford" engines before it merged with the "Maserati".
Ambitions and skilful fingers are brought away the former racing driver: he decided to excel the most Enzo Ferrari! To achieve this great goal De Tomaso had drawn away former employees of "Ferrari". Gianpaolo Dallara came from "Lamborghini" in 1968. At the same time De Tomaso buys "Ghia", and with it he finds a diamond pure - Tom Dzhaarda, chief designer of "Ghia". Finally, in 1970, he was able to gain Nello Ugolini, who took part in the development of "Pantera" design. After creation in the mid-sixties the "Mangusta" car, De Tomaso made his first serious bid for success. These cars were produced about four hundred - at that time quite an impressive figure for "luxury" class car manufacturer and mounting of V8 engine on these cars included "DeTomaso Automobili SpA" in a cohort of the most famous Italian car manufacturers.
The legendary DeTomaso Mangusta was designed by famous designer Giugiaro. The flying models were equipped with dual headlights in front of the grille; later models had one seven-inch retractable headlight. Body panels were made of steel and the approximate weight of "Mangust" was 1409 kgs. "DeTomaso Mangusta" was magnificent in design, but rather heavy in management, but it is an essential part of the early history of the company and now its desirable object for collectors.
Five years later, the company De Tomaso Automobili opened a joint venture with Ford, which was engaged in the production of Pantera model which was sold until 1990. By 1971, when "DeTomaso Pantera" was presented, De Tomaso had outlined the model concept of "DeTomaso Automobili". "Ghia" was purchased to design and refine the appearance of two new cars: "Deauville", a car with four-body "sedan", and two-door coupe "LongchampВ». Tom Dzhaarda became a designer of both vehicles. "Deauville" was intended as a vehicle of "luxury" class for four passengers. Dzhaarda tried to design a machine that would have all sides looked flawless, and has kept a trapezoidal grille, which is also a feature of another machine of "DeTomaso" named "Mangusta".
DeTomaso Pantera is the most noticeable car of "De Tomaso". The legendary "Pantera" is still released by the company. Many people associate "DeTomaso" brand with this model, and it established for "De Tomaso" a reputation of one of the best GT car manufacturers. In the development of "Pantera" can be traced three distinct stages: Ford's (from 1971 to 1974), post-Ford's (from 1975 to 1990) and the final chord sounded in 1991, and it is these last "Pantera" substantially different from its counterparts. Last "Pantera" modification was released in 1996, ending nearly 25 years of continuous production of this model.
Last years, under the De Tomaso brand De Tomaso Mangusta sports coupe was produced. It served as the basis for creating own sport coupe of MG Rover company.
From the latest interesting innovations of "DeTomaso Automobili" are "DeTomaso Bigua" model of 1997 and "DeTomaso Guara" model released in 1996.
Unfortunately, Guara was the last model developed at direct participation of Alejandro. Because of the stroke, he was confined to a wheelchair. As a result, the company was supported by Ford and Bruce Kavala who was longtime partner of De Tomaso.American thoroughly worked for his money and returned company on the racetrack and on the American market. At the same time he allowed the Italians to focus on the preparation of Santiago - the second generation of "Panther", drawn by Tom Tyarda and equipped by V8 Ford engine. And everything would be good but in 2000 Kavalli came into conflict with the new leadership of the company and with the help of lawyers sued not only the rights to the car, but a new De Tomaso plant.