The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Pantera says that it would be a good candidate for a rolling restoration. We’ll just have to see if its price is something you could roll with.
The Internet loves looking at cats. Well, this is the Internet, and yesterday we had a 1984 Jaguar XJS five-speed to look at, and that is sort of a cat. Unfortunately for the seller, that rare - and soon to be rarer owing to the copious areas of rust - Jag didn’t kindle much love. Even as unique as it was, its price took it down in an 84% Crack Pipe loss.
Cat are assholes, right? Well some people used to make the same claim about industrialist and Latin bon vivant Alejandro de Tomaso.
The Argentine-born De Tomaso was known for tweaking the noses of competitive car maker executives, and for bringing to the world cars like the Chrysler-Maserati TC and the gaudy De Tomaso Dodge Omni 024. Dude knew how to get attention.
He also famously commissioned a show car to be displayed at the 1971 Turin Motor Show that was the spitting image of Fiat’s upcoming X1/9. De Tomaso had been given a look at the pre-production Fiat and wanted to make the Italian company’s exec’s crap i loro pantaloni.
But for all of his mischief, and bluster, and serial car-maker purchases, the one thing that Alejandro De Tomaso will probably be most remembered for is for giving the world the Pantera.
Take a look at one and I think you will agree that all is forgiven. Drive one, and you might start thinking of doing dirty deeds yourself.
There’s been a dirty deed done dirt cheap to this 1972 Pre-L Pantera and that is the hole cut in the roof for the addition of a very Pep Boys pop-up moon roof. The Pantera’s Tom Tjaarda-penned, Carrozzeria Ghia design is one of history’s greatest and it’s a shame that someone felt the need to mar it with so tacky a taint to its top.
Other than that, the car is described as being structurally sound but in need of some tidying up, and looks okay in the pics. Perhaps most concerning, aside from the roof, is the engine cover/boot lid which is woefully out of alignment. The paint on the 55,000-miler looks to be in need of some attention too, and if you like wings but don’t like Hooters then there’s one of those on the lid in back as well.
The interior looks to be in very serviceable shape, with the original (and from my experience, wildly uncomfortable) seats and all trim intact. You’ll note that the gated shifter is a dogleg, with first out of the H. That’s something you get used to and honestly with the buckets of torque the big Cleveland right behind you puts out, shifting the ZF box isn’t something you’ll probably be doing all that much.
Prices on Panteras have gone through the roof in the past decade, and they always seem to be a good investment, or at least to hold their value. Perhaps the biggest issue in the Pantera trade is that there aren’t that many unmolested ones on the market as for the longest time the cars were so undervalued that people would personalize them to the n-th degree.
This one still even has its luggage tray and the seller says it’s well sorted mechanically. Oh and yes, as you’ll note the picture of those mechanicals, the gas filler on these early cars is directly above the exhaust manifold. Woosh!
This one is scruffy, but other than the wing, the sunroof, a freaky-deaky air cleaner, and the chrome Cromodoras (yech!) it looks pretty stock. There’s plenty to do to it and as such it comes with a fairly low - for running Panteras - price. That’s $58,500. Yes, I know that’s not low in general, but come on work with me here.
Now, considering that you’d need to re-steel that roof, de-chrome those damn wheels, and most likely repaint and de-wing the thing, do you think that $58,500 is a good starting place for this car? Before you answer, have a look at this one and its price.
Okay, now that we’ve compared and contrasted, what’s your take on this white knight and that $58,500 price? Is that a deal for a rolling restoration? Or, is that just not how you would roll?
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