It's an early pre-L model that's gloriously original.
The De Tomaso Pantera doesn't get the love it deserves. That's a generally accepted fact not just by De Tomaso fans but by motoring enthusiasts in general. It's not unloved by any means, but when your supercar competition is the Lamborghini Countach, Ferrari 512 BB, and eventually the Testarossa, it's hard to stand out in a crowd.
The Pantera's production run spanned a whopping 21 years, during which over 7,000 were built. They aren't particularly rare as far as supercars go, but the vast majority of them are the updated L model that arrived in 1973. As such, the 1971 model featured here is exceptionally rare and original, and it's ready to seek a new owner as it crosses the auction block with Silverstone Auctions in the UK.
The early pre-L Panteras sat a bit lower and had a narrower body, and the thin bumpers were a stark contrast to the larger units on later cars. According to the auction listing, this particular Pantera is in "very original" condition, having shown no sign of rust or welds that might indicate repair work. The car is chassis number 2,105 and was reportedly sold in America to its original owner in 1972. It was registered in Oregon where it apparently stayed until purchased in an estate sale in 2012 and shipped to the UK.
The original owner reportedly died in the late 1990s, and the Pantera was said to have been in dry storage for some time. Upon arrival in England, the car was given an aesthetic and mechanical reconditioning to the tune of nearly $20,000. The cost included a litany of items such as new brakes and suspension, updated cooling system, engine maintenance, and a full repaint in its original shade of Spring Orange. The Pantera's numbers-matching 5.8-liter Ford-sourced Cleveland V8 engine is still mounted behind the driver, which could send the sleek machine to over 170 mph in 1971.
Silverstone Auctions will offer the Pantera for auction on November 13. It's estimated to bring somewhere between $90,000 and $100,000.