Wealth is concentrating upwards toward the 1 percent of the 1 percent. Instagram influencers are flying to Miami to rent and pose and preen in Lamborghinis and Ferraris, irreversibly cheapening these brands in the eyes of those that can actually afford to own them. Exotic car manufacturers with their fingers in the wind have clearly come to the consensus that the time is ripe for a new crop of metal that’s ludicrously exclusive enough to keep people with selfie sticks out of the club, and the proliferation of ultra-high end hypercars over the last few years has been staggering.
Here’s another for the pile. Built to celebrate De Tomaso’s 60th anniversary, the P72 has been “designed to pay homage to De Tomaso’s 1960s P70 prototype racer, built in partnership with Carroll Shelby.” Thus, new De Tomaso brand overlords Ideal Team Ventures from Hong Kong looked to the works of Peter Brock for inspiration, who worked on the original P70 as well as classics like the Corvette Stingray.
Ideal Team Ventures also owns Apollo, and thus the utterly ludicrous Apollo Intense Emotionale we first saw in 2017, and gave its design team the IE’s carbon fiber monocoque chassis as a starting point to work from.
That’s all the solid detail we’ve been given at this point, apart from what we can see in the pictures, which show one of the most unashamedly curvaceous designs we’ve seen in many years, a deliberate return to the flowing forms that permeated the 50s, 60s and 70s before things got all wedgy and sharp and digital in the 80s.
Indeed, the new De Tomaso team wanted this to be a “modern day time machine” capable of transporting the driver back in time to a more analog age. Thus, the interior is so damn analog it’s borderline steampunk, with dial gauges so pretty they look like those crystal glasses your mother keeps in the cupboard in case royalty pops in to visit.
It’s even beautiful from angles you’d need to be sniffing the seats to look at it from – look at the time and materials that have been spent making this sequential gearshift mechanism look cool tucked away under the center console:
We don’t know what engine De Tomaso is choosing to run in this thing, or if it will be naturally aspirated like the Apollo IE’s monstrous 780-hp 6.3-liter V12. What we do know is that, like the Apollo, the P72 will run a large and visually prominent central exhaust exit.
Putting things delicately, the starfish shape of the Apollo’s exhaust reminded us a little too much of the exhaust on your average mammal. As we said when we first saw it, “in a perfect world, it would visibly pucker whenever you go into a corner too fast.” On the De Tomaso, it’s been reamed out into a gaping hole at the bottom of the engine bay that makes the P72 look like it’s been around the block several times before it’s even turned a wheel.
It’s a great baritone saxophone horn of a thing, upturned in such a way that it’ll be virtually impossible for children and fools to resist throwing rubbish into. Interesting choice, but then hey, vive la difference.
The P72’s surprise unveiling at Goodwood [Festival of Speed] signals that De Tomaso is open for business again, and the company says it’s planning to build just 72 of these things, specified to meet LMP2 racing specifications as set by the FIA.
The price will be “around €750,000,” (US$845,000) and considering that the Apollo IE’s 10 builds sold for a staggering US$2.7 million each, the De Tomaso P72 looks like a bit of a bargain, especially if the motor in there’s half decent, which it surely will be. It remains to be seen if that’ll be enough to keep the ‘grammers outside looking in.
Source: De Tomaso Automobili
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