Alejandro de Tomaso's biography deserves a good director. Back in the fifties, the man was forced to leave Argentina due to political reasons, only to become an "also ran" Formula 1 driver. Then again, despite being "a nobody" in the town of Enzo Ferrari, de Tomaso was quick to set up his own car company. De Tomaso started out with prototypes, only to move on to road cars like the Vallelunga and the Mangusta.
Of course de Tomaso's concept would have never worked if it wasn't for his friendship with Lee Iacocca. Thanks to the American connection, the new Pantera was displayed at every Ford dealership, while Ghia and Vignale got absorbed into Ford. Through a number of ups and downs, De Tomaso also continued to build cars until Alessandro's final moments in 2003.
Marcello Gandini didn't want to work for de Tomaso. While he appreciated what the Argentinian was trying to do, he also intended to keep a distance from the man who seemed to be the opposite of Gandini's boss at the time, Ferruccio Lamborghini.
Yet a clever employee of de Tomaso's, a certain Perego, managed to lure him over, and so Gandini agreed to do certain "easy jobs" for Alessandro. The list included the Pantera's (failed) refresh after twenty years, a number of Maserati BiTurbo updates (following de Tomaso's purchase of the brand that put him in a Formula 1 car), stillborn concept cars and the 2000 De Tomaso Biguá, which continued its career as the Qvale Mangusta.
As Marcello Gandini told Davide Cironi, de Tomaso always payed him on time, if not in advance. But he was also the kind of man who would go back to buy the hotel he was once thrown out of. Simply because it was time for the people of Modena to learn his name, once and for all.
(Please use the subtitles to enjoy Gandini's stories in English!)
You may be happy to learn that the historic De Tomaso brand . However, I won't speculate on who's behind it this time around. Let's just wait and see if a car shows up. Or a branded handbag.