De Tomaso Zonda
Geneva Motor Show
Petrol engine: 5.8 litres 5763 cc
The De Tomaso Zonda was a sports prototype car of the Italian car manufacturer de Tomaso, which was first presented in 1971.
A luxury sports coupe with 2 seats by Ghia for De Tomaso, with the support of the US company Ford. A series production did not materialize. The company entered into a relationship with the Ford Corporation. In connection with a larger business, which also includes the acquisition of Alejandro de Tomaso Ford was ready to sell a revised, everyday version of the Mangusta in large quantities in the US market. De Tomaso then developed the Mangusta for Pantera, who had an independent body and an improved suspension, conceptually but largely similar to its predecessor. Ford drove the Italian-built Pantera 1971 in the United States through the network of Lincoln - Mercury dealers. The project was initially a success; until 1974 Ford was able to sell more than 5000 Panteras.
At the beginning of the 1970s, de Tomaso strove for an expansion of the model range. The company put the Pantera the four-door sedan Deauville aside, a year later, the derived notched coupe Longchamp appeared. They also had a Ford large-scale engine and a body designed by Tom Tjaarda. Unlike the Pantera, however, Ford did not sell Deauville and Longchamp in the US; the Europe-only marketing led to the fact that both models achieved in 15 years in total only medium three-digit production figures.
As part of the expansion effort, De Tomaso also considered extending the model range to an exclusive front-engine sports coupe that would be located above the Pantera and compete with top Ferrari and Maserati models.
First designs for the body went back to the friend of Alejandro de Tomaso Milan fashion designer Giulia Moselli; However, it only provided superficial sketches. The detail design was the responsibility of Tom Tjaarda, who was the head of design of the Carrozzeria Ghia. Ghia also produced a prototype that was publicly displayed at the 1971 Geneva Motor Show. In this prototype, De Tomaso Maserati’s took on the tradition of naming car models after winds. The hatchback coupe was named Zonda, which referred to a strong wind in the Argentine Andes. Ford and De Tomaso did not agree on a series production in the following years; Ford refused to import to the US, as the $ 14,000 forecast sales price did not suggest any profitable sales. De Tomaso alone was not able to develop the Zonda to production maturity. Therefore, the project was not pursued.
The De Tomaso Zonda had an elongated hatchback body, which significantly in the proportions and profile of the Giorgetto Giugiaro -designed Maserati Ghibli recalled. He had a low, long hood, a far back laid passenger compartment and a deep sloping rear roofline. As with the Ghibli, there were only small side windows behind the doors. Front were folding headlights Installed. Technically, the Zonda based on the front engine platform of De Tomaso Deauville, which was shortened, however. The drive was provided by the other De-Tomaso models known, 5.8-liter eight-cylinder V-engine from Ford.
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