Classic Cars

The New De Tomaso P72 and a Visual History of the Brand

Goodwood brings the best of the best from the woodwork.

Between the return of the Toyota Supra and an honest-to-goodness mid-engined Corvette, we’re living in quite the strange (and fortuitous) automotive timeline. This wild, weird industry keeps throwing us curveballs, from Tesla’s forthcoming semi-truck to Ford’s discontinuation of all cars except the Mustang, every time we think we’re losing our sense of wonder, something pops up and redefines what we thought feasible.

Case in point – the shocking renaissance of De Tomaso. Well, maybe it’s a bit early to say “renaissance,” considering we’ve only seen one pre-production hypercar, but of all the semi-mainstream defunct brands, De Tomaso was fairly low on the list of expected revivals. Unveiled a few weeks ago at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, the De Tomaso P72 is the first production car to wear the name since the discontinuation of the rare Guara in supercar in 2004.

If the sculptural P72 is anything to go by, the future of the brand is as bright as the car’s gleaming copperwork. Better yet, the debut gave the new owners of De Tomaso the chance to show off what made the brand so desirable to begin with, supported by an accompanying display of historical De Tomaso sports cars.

It was mostly comprehensive, starting at De Tomaso’s first car, the relatively obscure and very petite Vallelunga that packed a tiny 1.6-liter Ford inline-four, unlike the later V-8 powered Mangusta and Pantera. Those two made appearances as well, the former with gorgeous silver-blue paint and the latter in GTS, GT5, and extremely rare SI configuration.

Unfortunately, the charming Deauville, muscular Longchamp, and enigmatic Guara didn’t make the trip, but this lineup–along with the P72–was more than enough to remind enthusiasts how excited they should be for the return of one of Italy’s greatest marquees.

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