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)

1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible / Specs, Model History

The automobile featured in this article is a great looking 1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible.

1957 ford fairlane convertible

1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible

The Ford Fairlane was produced between 1955 and 1970. The automobile was named after Henry Ford's 56 room, 31,000 square foot Fair Lane estate in Dearborn, Michigan, a Detroit suburb.

According to HenryFordEstate.org..... The estate along the Rouge River included a hydro-electric powerhouse and dam, a greenhouse, a working farm built to scale for their grandchildren, an indoor pool, skating house, staff cottages, bowling alley, and a pony barn, as well as a private garage and laboratory for Henry. The vast gardens and landscape were designed by famed architect Jens Jensen".

The 1957 Ford Fairlane / New Style and Improved Power

The 1957 model year was a good one. All of the major automakers were adding new designs and the era of car fins was in full stride. Just prior to 1957  Chevrolet was known as the car with styling and performance. The 1957 model year upset this to a degree. Ford introduced what some might say was the most beautiful automobile of the decade. The Ford Fairlane was completely restyled for 1957. The Fairlane had a bigger, weightier and sportier new body, with a lower-profile "cowbelly" frame. The Ford Fairlane didn't have as much chrome as the Pontiac or Chevrolet but the car looked futuristic in many ways.

1957 ford fairlane specificationsThe combination of the new body style, smaller wheels, and newly designed chassis lowered the total height of the car by four inches and lowered the center of gravity.

Along with great styling, the Ford Fairlane received increased power with it's Y-block engine. The successor to the Flathead engine, the Ford Y-block V-8 engine delivered far better performance. The 57 Y-block engine was found under Ford's first hood that opened from the back end of it.

Trim lines for 1957 included the base "Custom", "Custom 300", "Fairlane", and the top of the line "Fairlane 500". The two "Custom" trims offered were built on a 116.0 inch wheelbase.

Handling was improved for the 57 Ford Fairlane with a lower stance and revised suspension.

The 1957 interior was entirely new. A new instrument panel showcased a large sweeping speedometer with a fuel and temperature gauge located at each end. Seat covers, as well as door panels, were also redesigned.

The 1957 Ford Fairlane ended up being a big success with 637,161 vehicles sold.

1957 Ford Fairlane Specifications

Ford offered a variety of engines for 1957. These included a 223 cubic-inch “Mileage Maker” six-cylinder, to 272, 292, and 312 cubic-inch Y-block V-8s. Improvements in the Y-block for 1957 included larger valves, a higher lift cam, and a large-bore intake manifold. All 1957 engines were essentially the same as in 56 except tuned for more power.

Transmission choices were a three speed manual or a two speed automatic.

Brakes were four wheel drum.

Front suspension was unequal length upper and lower control arms with coil springs. Rear suspension was longitudinal leaf springs.

Dimensions for the 57 Fairlane included a 118.0 inch wheelbase. Overall length was 207.7 inches...width 79.0 inches...height 56.2 inches...and an average weight depending on V-6 or V-8 of 3,400 lbs.

New car price in 1957 was $2,500-$2,600.

You may also enjoy these additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below...

The 1958 Ford Fairlane Retractable Hardtop

The 1958 Ford Four Door Ranch Wagon

The 1957 Pontiac Star Chief Convertible

1957 ford tail fins

New fin styling for 57

References for this article included...Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner, 1957-1959 (Classic Motorbooks Photofacts) by author Jerry H. Magayne.....Ford Fairlane Performance Portfolio 1955-1970.....Ford Motor Company Archives.

The 1957 Ford Fairlane Collector Car

In general, the 1950's produced some terrific collector cars. The 1957 model year was arguably one of the better ones. Ford made great strides in the design and performance departments including building their first hardtop convertible and the Ranchero which was essentially a good looking pickup with passenger car styling. The 57 Chevy Bel Air became an iconic car of the 50's and designs in general took another step forward in modernization. Car fin styling was at the forefront in 1957 but these would eventually fade away in the very early 60's.

1957 ford fairlane dashboard

Newly designed dash for 57

As of this writing, current values for the 1957 Ford Fairlane Sedan range from about $14,000 to $20,000 for very good to excellent condition vehicles. Highest values for the Fairlane models are the hardtops and convertibles in the $25,000 to $30,000 range.

Fairlane 500 Sedans are generally in the same range as the Fairlane Sedans. The highest values Fairlane 500 is the Skyliner Hardtop Convertible in the $50,000 area and the Sunliner Convertible in the mid $40,000 area. These are general estimates based on sales and obviously will vary due to overall condition and mileage plus age of restoration.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)


1965 Ford Falcon Station Wagon / All Model Details, Photos

The automobile featured in this article is a 1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Station Wagon.

1965 ford falcon wagon

1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Wagon

Ford Motor Company produced the Ford Falcon from 1960 to 1970. It should be noted that Ford Motor in Australia did produce the Falcon past 1970.

Ford also produced a two door wagon. Ford made many different types of Falcons. These included sedans, convertibles, Falcon Sprints, the Ranchero, an Econoline Passenger Van and of course the two types of wagons. The top trim level for the 65 Falcon was the Futura series.

The 1965 Falcon's were of the second generation models. A major redesign took place for the 1964 model year which gave the vehicle a more squared and modern appearance. The Ford Mustang came out in late 1964 and was essentially built on a Falcon frame. Ironically, it was the popular Mustang that pretty much caused the Falcon to disappear in 1970.

ford falcon wagon specsThe Ford Falcon Model

When the concept of the Ford Falcon model hit the drawing boards, the goal was to create a good selling economy compact. In fact, compact economy automobiles were important class beginning that year. Styling originally took a back seat. In 1960 the engine was simply a 144 cubic inch six with 90 HP. A V-8 would be introduced to the Falcon in 1963. The Falcon first came out with two- and four-door sedan body styles to be followed shortly after with two- and four-door station wagons along with Rancheros.

Interestingly enough, in 1963 Ford turned to building a few Falcons specially for European Rally's with the intention of changing the car's image from stodgy to something more sporty. The result was the Ford did pretty well in Europe during 1963-64 with the Falcon capturing several wins and second place finishes.

The 1965 Falcon Wagon

On the design standpoint, the 1965 Ford Falcon Wagon carried the new more squared design introduced in 1964.

The Ford Falcon Wagon was a good looking automobile and was considered economical to own. The new car base price for the 65 Ford Falcon Wagon was about $2,300. The Falcon Wagon was advertised as giving a smooth and comfortable  ride  Ford compared the smoothness to a ride in a big sedan.

1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Wagon Specifications

Several engines were available in 1965 for the Falcon wagons. These included two L-head sixes, at 200 cubic inches, and 223 cubic inches with 116 and 138 HP respectively, and a 260 cubic inch V-8 rated at  260 HP.

Transmission choices included a three speed manual or an optional Cruise-O-Matic automatic.

Dimensions included a wheelbase of 109.5 inches, an overall length of 190.0 inches, height of 54.9 inches, width of 71.6 inches. Curb weight varies slightly by two or four door model but the average is about 2,765 lbs.

Total Ford production for the 1965 model year was 2,171,000 vehicles. Out of that number there were 186,000 Falcon model built. Out of that number there were a total of 14,900 Falcon station wagons produced. The majority were four door wagons where only 4,900 two door wagons were made.

65 ford falcon station wagonFord Falcon Station Wagons Collector Valuations

We believe that the Ford Falcon, particularly during the first half of the 1960's, is an collector car. This is the era prior to and at the time of the Mustang introduction.

Looking at 1965 Falcons as an example, the entire line is relatively inexpensive for someone wanting to start a collection. The highest valued model would likely be the two door convertible with the top prices ranging from about $14,000 to $20,000.

The 65 Falcon Wagon top values are in a range from about $7,000 to $11,000. Both the two and four door wagons fit in this same range.

falcon wagon dashboard

Falcon Wagon dash

The Ford Falcon Sprint is a car that had a lot in common with the Mustang and at first was in netter supply at dealers than the Mustang. The Falcon Sprint is a sporty vehicle with power and compares favorably, by some, with the Mustang. Remember, they were building Mustangs on Falcon chassis.

There are many Ford Falcon enthusiasts and an excellent resource for anyone wanting to learn more about the Falcon may want to connect with the Falcon Club of America (www.falconclub.com).

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)