Alessandro De Tomaso, boss of De Tomaso, not only longed to produce a sports car to rival the greatest Italian exotics, which he tried and failed with the Pantera, but also to market a four-door sedan that could compete with the class, refinement and quality of its European rivals. Only, maybe not quality. Anyways, thus was the De Tomaso DEAUVILLE born. Designed by Tom Tjaarda, the Deauville ressembled the Jaguar XJ6 so much that it’s almost impossible to believe that it wasn’t a straight-up copy!
Introduced in 1971, and in production until 1988, the De Tomaso Deauville relied on a powerful 5.8-liter Ford V8 engine, powerful and reliable, which propelled this heavy sedan to a more than respectable top speed of 140 mph, and accelerated it to 60 mph in 8 seconds. Thankfully, it also sported a fully independent suspension and four-wheel disc brake to provide some handling and stopping power.
What’s clear as day is that despite its powerful engine, surprinsigly good handling and … ahem… Jaguar-inspired lines, the Deauville was actually a pretty boring-looking car. It could never reach the level of build quality and refinement its customers expected and deserved for their money; it died a quiet death in 1988, only a few hundred cars having been produced over its 17-year production run. It is to this day un-mourned, but by the most ardent De Tomaso fans.