How John DeLorean Created The Muscle Car Movement In The United States
by Gregg Hall
1967 Pontiac GTO
Most of us think of John DeLorean as the guy behind the gull-wing stainless car from the Back to the Future movies but the fact of the matter is that his contributions to the automotive world go much farther back than that. DeLorean was actually the creator of the muscle car revolution in the United States. Think of how different the sports car industry would be today if we hadn't had that era of performance cars.
In 1964 DeLorean was with Pontiac and he made the decision to totally recreate the Tempest using a huge V8 high performance engine. The car became known as the GTO, also nicknamed the Goat by adoring fans and remains to this day one of the all-time favorite muscle cars. The GTO was a big hit for Pontiac sparking off huge sales volume and led other manufacturers to follow suit.
His creative out of the box thinking got him advanced to the higher echelons of the automotive industry but his independent free thinking nature was not really cut out for that and he ended up leaving that and forming his own company to do things his way.
Leaving his past fruits behind him in Detroit, DeLorean opened his own car company in Northern Ireland with the rather ambitious idea of competing against the Big Three automakers that he had helped so much in the 1960's. His namesake, the DeLorean DMC-12 was a unique brushed stainless steel sports car with the innovative flip up gull wing doors. The car never really took off and actually less than nine thousand ever sold. Still, the vehicle was responsible for many innovations for years to come.
DeLorean along with Preston Tucker were both headstrong individuals who were forward thinking revolutionaries way ahead of their time introducing cutting edge vehicles. Although their product ideas didn't take off in their time they influenced the future of the automotive industry.
In 1999 DeLorean had hopes of coming back to the automotive world with a high performance sports car that would be priced below 20k and would be made of mostly plastic. It seemed like he was ready for a revival but it never came to fruition and he died in 2004.
It will be interesting to see how the new Tesla Motor Company's electric high performance car does; the founder says he was influenced by DeLorean and Tucker. The car does 0 to 60 in under 4 seconds with a top speed of 130 mph.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Gregg_Hall July 24, 2006
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