Pantera is resurrected… ARES Design’s Panther evokes the Giugiaro-styled De Tomaso but changes language…
You’ve probably read about the new ‘Lancia Stratos’ being built on a Ferrari F430 base and, if you have been paying attention to your monthly Octane, you’ll be aware of the ARES Panther. This is the car that ARES Design, run by Dany Bahar (ex-Ferrari and Lotus) and technical director Matteo Vezzani, announced early in the year as a re-make of De Tomaso’s mid-engined Pantera, using a Lamborghini Huracan as the starting point and carbonfibre for the panels (so no pushrod Ford V8).
Things have come along since then and the plan is to build 21 production cars starting in October, each costing €515,000 although all have now been reserved by buyers. The V10 engine has been enlarged from 5.2 to 5.6 litres and delivers 650bhp with, ARES hints, more to come. ‘The sound is nothing short of a roar,’ says Vezzani. Other work includes sharpening the throttle response and the double-clutch transmission’s shifts.
Pop-up headlights, like the Pantera’s, feature on the Panther, although they are hard to spot on the disguised prototype. They are outlawed on new cars but, as a pre-existing car that has undergone extensive post-registration bodywork modifications, the Panther appears to have circumnavigated the legislation.