1974 DeTomaso Pantera GTS / Model History, Photos, More

1974 detomaso pantera

1974 DeTomaso Pantera

The car featured in this article is a stunning 1974 DeTomaso Pantera GTS. The DeTomaso Pantera was originally introduced in Modena, Italy and was on display at the New York Auto Show in 1970.

The Pantera began as a joint venture between the Ford Motor Company and De Tomaso Automobili

The Pantera was initially designed to "Ford specification" for the average American driver and to a price point and level of trim that made it competitive in the American sports car market<

DeTomaso Modena S.p.A.

Although DeTomaso Modena S.p.A. is an Italian car company, Alejandro DeTomaso was not Italian, he was born in Argentina. His family was very wealthy; his father was a prominent politician and his mother was a member of the Ceballos family, one of Argentina's oldest and wealthiest families, with vast land holdings originally granted to the family by the King of Spain.

detomaso pantera italian sports carThe logo DeTomaso used for his automobile company was a tribute to his home country of Argentina and his family heritage. The blue and white stripes of the logo's background are the colors of the national flag of Argentina. The symbol in the foreground that looks like a letter "T" is the branding symbol of the Ceballos estate where Alejandro grew up.

Today De Tomaso Automobili S.p.A. operates as an automaker for prototypes and sports cars. Their product line still includes the two-door, mid-engine Vallelunga, Mangusta and Pantera.

The First DeTomaso

The Vallelunga was the first DeTomaso car made, right before the Mangusta. It was the comapany's first road going model. It is thought that only a few dozen Vallelungas survive today, their ownership being a worldwide but small group of enthusiasts.

The DeTomaso Pantera

The DeTomaso Pantera is a mid-engine automobile that was produced by the DeTomaso car company in Italy from 1971-1991. During this two decade run there were 7,000 units built. The Pantera was designed by the firm, Ghia, and replaced the Mangusta model. Ghia stylist Tom Tjaarda styled the new supercar, and Giam Paolo Dallara was engaged for chassis and production design. The Pantera is a true supercar and is considered one of the finest ever produced.

Imported to the U.S. By Ford Motor Company

Ford was in need of a sport car to compete directly with the Chevy Corvette and import automobiles like Ferrari. Before Ford became involved with DeTomaso and the Pantera they had tried and failed to buy Ferrari. This new relationship gave Lee Iacocca and Ford a mid-engine sports car.

Ford imported a little over 1,000 Pantera's for the 1971 model year. The Pantera's were built with Ford's "Cleveland" 351 V-8's. The cars were placed on display and sold at Lincoln-Mercury dealers. Ford sold about 5,500 units before they ceased importation at the end of 1974. At that point DeTomaso took over the Pantera project himself and production continued for markets other that the U.S.

Three years after the model's introduction, by 1974, several improvements had been made to the Pantera but none was more essential than the addition of the Ford 351 Cleveland V-8 engine with four-bolt mains, a higher-performance cam and reduced compression to comply with U.S. emission standards.

1974 DeTomaso Pantera GTS Specifications

Engine on the 74 Pantera was a Ford "Cleveland" 351 Four Barrel V-8 delivering 325 horsepower. Zero to 60 was rated at 6.5 sec.

detomaso cars

Pantera's rear supercar styling

Gearbox was a German manufactured ZF model 5DS-25 five speed manual.

Brakes were four wheel disc.

Overall length was 168.1 inches, width 74.8 inches and a wheelbase of 99.0 inches. Curb weight 3,020 lbs.

You may enjoy the additional Auto Museum Online article found on the link below.....

The 1969 DeTomaso Mangusta

The book DeTomaso Pantera by author David Adler is an excellent picture book on all of the models.

italian supercars pantera

Pantera dashboard

DeTomaso Pantera Collector Cars

Pantera's have been steadily increasing in value. These American/Italian supercars are considered very rare and have increased much in popularity. Ford had originally wanted 5,000 Pantera's imported per year but for a variety of reasons they never received near that amount. One reason was that the German company supplying the gearboxes could not produce the numbers needed. For both DeTomaso and for the gearbox supplier this high volume of production asked for by Ford was totally new.

The new car price for a 1974 model GTS was about $15,500.

As of this writing, valuations for the 1974 DeTomaso Pantera GTS range from about  $50,000 to $125,000, low to high retail.

For DeTomaso Pantera enthusiasts, owners or prospective owners, plenty of information including forums, news and more can be found at www.poca.com   This is the site for the Pantera Owners Club of America.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)

1954 Nash Statesman Custom Farina / Specs, Photos, More

The great looking automobile featured in the article is the 1954 Nash Statesman Custom Farina Sedan. The Nash Statesman was manufactured by Nash Motors for the 1950-1956 model years. Nash positioned the Statesman mid level above the Rambler and below the Ambassador. The 1954 Nash Statesman was of the second generation models, 1952-1956.

1954 nash statesman

1954 Nash Statesman Custom

Nash Motors History

Charles Nash began building automobiles as early as 1903 and formed Nash Motors in 1916. Part of the early Nash history is that... the Mitchell Motor Car Company of Racine Wisconsin was acquired by Nash in 1923. Mitchell had been producing cars for twenty years under the Mitchell brand.

Nash Motors also went on to acquire Lafayette Motors in 1924. After beginning business in 1920 the company's majority stock was picked up by Nash Motors in 1924.

When Nash Motors was formed in 1916 World War One was not far away and during this war Nash was the largest truck builder in the United States. Over the next several decades Nash Motors would grow much larger due to several mergers and acquisitions some of which have already been mentioned.

Charles Nash was credited for two big accomplishments. He was able to keep his company competitive during the Roaring Twenties when competition was growing rapidly and Nash also was able to keep the company going through the Great Depression years of the 1930′s.

nash motors statesman

Nash covered wheel wells and somewhat bulky yet elegant design

In 1954 Nash-Kelvinator merged with the Hudson Motor Car Company which was then formed as American Motors Corporation.

Of special note is that Nash introduced the industry’s first heating/air conditioning system using a single unit within the engine bay.

The Nash Statesman

Nash put designer Pininfarina of Italy on contract to design the new 1952 Statesman model. The car was produced in three models...the Two Door Sedan, the Four Door Sedan and the Two Door Coupe. The finished design actually ended up being a combination of a Nash in-house and Pinonfarina design. These were popular automobiles and many were purchased by police departments across the U.S. Because of the Statesman's lighter weight, the car had very good fuel economy.

The last of the Nash Statesman models were produced in August, 1956. Starting in 1957 all full-size Nash cars were Ambassadors.

1954 Nash Statesman Specifications

The 54 Nash Statesman came with a 196 Cubic Inch L:-Head Inline Six engine delivering 110 horsepower. While this type engine was used for many years by Nash, the 1954 model had the highest compression to date as well as sharing the highest U.S. stock car compression with Buick. Nash eliminated the cast iron head and replaced it with a high compression aluminum one. The aluminum head  dissipates heat faster than the iron one.

Transmission was a three speed manual.

Brakes were four wheel hydraulic drum. The front brake shoes were widened from 2 to 2 1/2 inch for 1954.

The Statesman rode on 114.3-inch wheelbase. Overall length of the model was 202.3 inches with the continental kits increasing that to 219 inches. Width 78.0 inches and height 61.75 inches. The top of the line Nash Ambassador had a 7 inch longer wheelbase. Estimated curb weight was 3,300 lbs.

See additional Auto Museum Online articles on the links below...

Restored 1948 Nash Ambassador Cabriolet

The 1927 Nash Sedan

1929 Nash Advanced Six Rumbleseat Coupe

nash statesman continental kit

54 Nash Continental kit

A few excellent books on the subject of Nash Motors and other independents include Storied Independent Automakers : Nash, Hudson and American Motors by author Charles K. Hyde... Nash: 1936-1957 Photo Archive by Byron Olsen and Charles Nash : From Buick To Rambler and Ambassador by Daniel Alef.

Nash Collector Cars and Values

During the early 1950's both the Nash Ambassador and Statesman models were volume and profit leaders for Nash.

nash statesman dashboardWhen you look at a model such as the 1954 Nash Farina Statesman Custom Airflyte sedan it appears somewhat bulky but it also has an elegant touch and the Continental kit, while there is some disagreement on what it adds to a car, it's our opinion that with it's rear spare tire it does add class. The Nash Statesman is a popular collector car and some of the fully restored models like the one featured here make good cars to begin a collection with. There are many automobile enthusiasts that are real fans of the old independents such as Nash.

The automobile model featured in this article has a valuation in the area of $15,000 with $20,000 plus being at the high retail end.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)





1957 Lincoln Premiere / Specs, Photos, More

The 1957 Lincoln Premiere Four Door was a luxury car produced by the Lincoln-Mercury Division of the Ford Motor Company. The first generation of the Lincoln Premiere was produced for the 1956 and 1957 model years.

The Premiere is known to have been inspired by Ford's 1955 Futura Show. The Lincoln brand gained more fame when years later the Hollywood "Batmobile" was designed from a Lincoln Futura concept car. The concept car had a plexiglass canopy and jet fighter type styling which had everything you needed for an into the future Batmobile.

lincoln premiere

1957 Lincoln Premiere grille and quad headlights

Lincoln came out for the 1956 model year with all new models. These cars were lower, longer and wider which was the hallmark look of the 1950's. Lincoln also changed their lineup hierarchy making the Capri the entry level Lincoln and making the new Premiere their top of the line Lincoln model.

The Lincoln Premiere was available as a hard top coupe, a four door hard top, and a convertible.

Styling Changes for the 1957 Lincoln Premiere

Styling changed for the 1957 model year, notably with big blade like rear fins, four headlights instead of two, more chrome trim and an engine with more horsepower. As a side note it was said that Lincoln management actually wanted these new tail fins to be two inches higher but designers nixed the idea. The tail fins were already among the biggest in 1957. Tail fins were a trademark of many car models during the late 1950's but in regards to Lincoln it was only in 1957 that their cars had what one might call true fins.

1957 lincoln premiere specificationsThe “Quadra-Lite” headlight setup used regular 7-inch headlights with 5-inch “road lamps” underneath turned on and off by a separate switch.

Since a true quad headlight configuration could be illegal in some states, the separate switch took care of that issue. Lincoln claimed that the 1957 Premiere was the first car with quad headlights, and had TV personality Ed Sullivan promote the cars. The Lincoln Premiere also featured four way power seats as standard equipment.

Lincoln Premiere sales for 1956 was strong. For 1957, Lincoln wanted to keep the sales high but felt changes needed to be made because of it's competition. Lincoln  believed it was essential to compete with the all new Forward Look from Chrysler. At the same time it should be noted that Lincoln used the same body shell from 1956.

New safety features on the 57 Premiere included a padded dash and a deep dish steering wheel in addition to more durable door latches.

1957 Lincoln Premiere Specifications

One engine was available for the 1957 Lincoln Premiere. This was a 368 cubic inch V-8 delivering 300 horsepower, up from the 285 HP of the 56 model.

Transmission was a Turbo-Drive three speed automatic.

Brakes were four wheel hydraulic drum.

Front suspension was independent coil springs with a stabilizer bar. Rear suspension

The wheelbase for both model years, 56 and 57, was 126.0 inches, three inches longer than the 1955 model, and for 1957 the overall length was increased almost two inches to 224.6. Width of the 1957 Premiere was 80.3 inches and height was 60.2 inches. Both slightly larger than the 56 models. Curb weight averaged about 4,700 lbs. The 1957 entry level Capri had the same dimensions as the 57 Premiere and most might say it looked extremely similar.

The Lincoln Premiere production numbers totaled 41,531 vehicles for the 1956 model year and 35,225 for 1957.

New car price for the 1957 Lincoln Premiere averaged about $5,000.

The Lincoln Motor Car Heritage Museum opened its doors to the public on August 9, 2014. The 15,000 sq. ft. facility is on the grounds of the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Hills, Michigan.

See additional Auto Museum Online articles on the links below...

The 1950 Lincoln Four Door Sport Sedan

The 1948 Lincoln Continental V-12 Convertible

The 1953 Mercury Monterey

References for this article includes Ford Lincoln Archives..... The Lincoln Motorcar by author Thomas E. Bonsall....The Lincoln Story : The Post War Years by author Thomas E. Bonsall...Lincoln & Continental 1946 -1980 : The Classic Post War Years by author Paul R. Woudenberg.

1957 llincoln premiere tail fins

Blade like large tail fins

Lincoln Collector Cars

There is a very active collector club named the Lincoln and Continental Owners Club. One feature for members worldwide is a bulletin board. It is named The Lincoln & Continental Corner where members can post information about their cars and exchange technical information. It will also include Wanted and For Sale sections where LCOC members (only) can advertise for wanted items and list their cars and parts for the world to see. If you're already and owner or are considering becoming one, this is a must see site. You'll also find dates for National Meets on this site. See www.lcoc.org.

The rarest 1957 Lincoln Premiere model is the convertible with only 3,665 produced. It's a rare automobile today. Current values for the 1957 convertible are around $50,000-$60,000 plus or minus depending on restoration and originality. The hardtop coupe may be $18,000 to $30,000 and the sedan values are perhaps slightly below those numbers.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)