1970 De Tomaso Mangusta by Ghia

The Mangusta, one of the pioneering supercars, marked De Tomaso’s entry into the automotive scene in 1967, solidifying the company’s reputation. Alejandro De Tomaso’s racing background in Argentina, followed by stints with Maserati and OSCA in Italy, fueled his ambition to establish De Tomaso Automobili in Modena, Italy, in 1959.

Initially focused on racing, the company ventured into road cars with the Vallelunga in 1965. Though the Vallelunga was not a commercial triumph, its design elements, notably the short-wheelbase and backbone chassis, influenced the subsequent Mangusta.

Arriving in 1967, the Mangusta boasted a mid-mounted 289ci (4.7-liter) Ford V8 engine, delivering 306bhp. Designed by Carrozzeria Ghia’s Giorgetto Giugiaro, the Mangusta featured distinctive ‘gull-wing’ engine covers, contributing to its striking appearance. Close ties with Ford facilitated production, yet only 401 Mangustas were crafted between 1967 and 1972, making them exceedingly rare compared to contemporaries like the Lamborghini Miura.

Approximately 250 Mangustas remain globally, with just eight in the UK, comprising both early ‘four-headlight’ and later ‘pop-up’ versions. With around 300 horsepower at its disposal, the aerodynamic Mangusta boasted a top speed nearing 155mph, aided by all-around disc brakes.

Photo Source: RM Sotheby’s