De Tomaso remains one of the greatest untold stories in the automotive industry. They are probably one of the greatest marques some may never heard of. They were founded in Modena in 1959; where the brand would be based all the way up until 2004, when the firm went into voluntary liquidation.
The brand was revived in 2009, and they produced the Deauville Concept for the Geneva motor show of 2011. However, that car never made production. De Tomaso now haven’t produced anything for 8 years. That is until now. They have gone back to their roots, and produced a sports car that featured at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.
It is called the P72 and is designed to pay homage to the De Tomaso P70 of 1975. The P70 was built as a collaboration between the famous Carroll Shelby and Alejandro de Tomaso. Ten of the P70 were built with 40 more built for GT homologation purposes. The car was engineered by De Tomaso, styled by Peter Brock and the engine was a competition version of the small block Ford V8, provided by Shelby. Sadly, the original P70 never raced due to Shelby leaving the project due to the development of the Ford GT40. However, it did inspire future De Tomaso Race cars.
The new P72 unveiled at Goodwood Festival Of Speed is designed to have the look of prototype cars of the 1960s; such as the Sport 1,00, Sport 2,000 and the P70 itself. The styling is a collaboration between De Tomaso and Wyn Design, that focuses on bringing the effortless beauty of the racing cars of the 1960s into the P72.
“We intentionally incorporated a distinctive aerodynamically optimized body for performance and to modernize the aesthetics, while the classic wing mirrors and front emblem cap pays homage to the P70.“ was how Jowyn Wong, the P72’s designer described the car.
He later said, “Beneath the surface, the interior showcases an elaborated combination of design and exotic materials. Polished copper and diamond pattern detailing adorn the cabin, fashioning a true sense of drama and occasion. The classically designed switchgear and circular analogue display dials take inspiration from the timeless design themes of the 60s and 70s era.”
The P72 is based on another of the parent companies supercars, the Apollo IE. This means it carries over innovative features that the Apollo has. For example, the P72 has an all carbon fibre chassis, consisting of subframes and crash structures that allow for the car to be suitable for the FIA LMP safety regulations. Unlike most modern supercars, the P72 features a proper manual gearbox.
The P72 will be an extremely unique and rare car. Only 72 will ever be built. The base price is said to be around €750,000. However, for the few who can afford one and will eventually own one, they certainly will enjoy the honour of owning such an incredible car with an equally incredible history.