The Petersen Automotive Museum Auction | Lot 240
1974 De Tomaso Pantera L by Ghia
$134,400 USD | Sold
| Los Angeles, California
8 December 2018
- Only 4,818 original miles
- Offered from single-family ownership for 40 years
- Pristine original cosmetic condition, including paint and interior
- Retains its original engine and many original stamping and markings, as well as its original glass and Goodyear Arriva tires
- Recently mechanically recommissioned
The De Tomaso Pantera was built in Italy but sold largely through Lincoln-Mercury dealers in the U.S. with a full factory warranty. It combined Ford’s dead-reliable 351 Cleveland V-8 and American-style comforts – including power windows and air conditioning – with such European performance features as a ZF transaxle, power-assisted four-wheel disc brakes, and rack-and-pinion steering. Simply put, it was the best of both possible sports car worlds, and it cost considerably less than a comparable Ferrari or Lamborghini.
Several different variations of the Pantera were produced over the years. The one that Americans instantly recognize is the second-generation Pantera L, or Lusso (“Luxury”), which incorporated several detail changes for the U.S. market. Most notably, the Pantera L was significantly better built than earlier examples, a fact recognized and lauded by the automotive press of the time. Today, the Pantera is widely heralded as the improbable idea that both Detroit and Turin got right and as one of the definitive and instantly recognizable supercars of the decade that birthed the category.
The current owner’s family acquired this Pantera L from Mark Sertl of Manchester, Missouri, in 1978, and have since maintained it in their collection for the past 40 years, carefully garaged alongside other fine sports cars and Full Classics. The car has been gently recommissioned mechanically, returning it to running and driving order, but is in cosmetically pristine order, including magnificent original paint, a near-mint interior, and what are believed to be the original Goodyear Arriva tires.
The original serial and body number tags are intact, as is the sticker on the air cleaner, and the original stampings are clear and correct throughout. Missouri safety inspection stickers are still on the Climaglass windshield, and a particularly poignant note is the Sears service tag inside one of the doors. Accompanying the car is the original jack and tool bag, as well as the original owner’s manual. At the time of cataloguing, the car recorded only 4,818 miles, almost certainly the original figure as corresponding to the 1978 title.
This is among the most original Pantera Ls offered in many years and would be an ideal addition to any collection favoring these extraordinary Blue Oval-powered supercars.