You had us at pop-up headlights.

The De Tomaso Pantera is an odd mid-engined supercar that was born in the quirky 1970s and died just as odd 21 years later. It never earned acclaim as Ferrari and Lamborghini did; however, it’s iconic design and powerful, Ford-sourced engine made it an icon of the time. Now, Ares Designs is resurrecting the Pantera through a modern interpretation – the Ares Panther.

See How The Ares Panther Developed:

Earlier this year, Ares announced the project, unveiling sketches and a prototype. A Lamborghini Huracán provides the Panther’s bones, giving the new supercar a familiar appearance. However, engineers at Ares worked hard to give the Panther unique styling elements and profile, such as adding pop-up headlights. The car retains a classic wedge shape that’s reminiscent of the Pantera.

Ares Panther

“This is a really exciting moment for us,” said Dany Bahar, founder, and Ares Design CEO. “Within just six months of announcing the Panther project we have our test car on the road and are ready to present to the world our expression of a car that I dreamt of as a kid. The Ares Panther will be the perfect blend of old school charm and charisma, underpinned with an iconic modern chassis, and clothed in full carbon.”

Right now, Ares test drivers have started the shake-down process, which could mean the supercar’s 5.6-litre V10 could produce more than the 650 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque the car is currently rated. Final development will conclude this summer. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission is standard.

Ares Panther

Ares will build just 21 Panthers with production beginning in October of this year. However, you’re out of luck if you're looking to buy one. All 2018 build slots are sold with each car taking approximately 24 weeks to build depending on the level of personalisation. The Panther starts at €515,000 (approximately £462,000 at today’s exchange rates).

The Panther is a launch point for Ares. It’s the first Ares “Legends Reborn” series, which will build cars focused on resurrecting iconic supercars from yesteryears. The Panther isn’t a shameless ripoff of its spiritual predecessor. It’s a modern interpretation of the Pantera for today’s audiences, and with a Lamborghini Huracán hiding underneath, you know it packs the performance. 

Ares Panther

Gallery: Ares Panther

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ARES DESIGN UNLEASHES THE PANTHER

ARES’ test drivers have started shake-down of the Panther development car from the atelier’s Modena home. With their experience from supercar programmes at the nearby Italian supercar companies, ARES’ team is ideally suited to matching the donor chassis and powertrain at the heart of the car with the new body and interior in order to forge the desired ARES Panther feel and behaviour on road and track.

Dany Bahar, Founder and CEO ARES DESIGN said: “This is a really exciting moment for us. Within just six months of announcing the Panther project we have our test car on the road and are ready to present to the world our expression of a car that I dreamt of as a kid. The ARES Panther will be the perfect blend of old school charm and charisma, underpinned with an iconic modern chassis, and clothed in full carbon.”

Just 21 ARES Panthers will be built from October 2018 with a starting price point of €515,000. All of 2018’s build slots have already been ordered and production of each car takes approximately 24 weeks depending on the level of personalisation requested by the client.

Matteo Vezzani, the newly appointed Technical Director of ARES DESIGN said: “This car is a showcase of ARES DESIGN’s capabilities. From the very first statement of intent to the shakedown, people have been fascinated by this project and I totally understand why. One of the most significant characteristics of the ARES Panther is its voice. The sound produced from the naturally aspirated V10 engine is nothing short of a roar. Super sporty, throaty and head turning, the team have done an incredible job in creating a stunning sounding, beautiful looking car.”

The 21 Panther owners will take delivery of a very special and rare car. It will feature all carbon fibre body panels, a carbon fibre/aluminium chassis, and stunning performance from an uprated 5.6-litre, 650hp, 560Nm, V10 that could provide even more power once final development is complete this summer. Throttle response has been improved and sharper gear-shifts delivered from the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

Shining through the car’s protective cover is the return of one of the automotive world’s coolest and emotive design features - pop-up headlights. Meanwhile, at the back, special attention has been given to the stunning exhaust system and pipes. Their dramatic style only matched in drama by the specially tuned soundtrack that they deliver.

The ARES Panther is the first creation from ARES’ “Legends Reborn” series – a programme that will deliver unique automotive projects focused on the resurrection of iconic sports and supercars.

Design, development and production of the ARES Panther is all undertaken at the new ARES DESIGN facility. The Modena HQ is the first of its kind – never before have bespoke, personalised and coach-built cars been conceived, designed, hand-crafted and then handed over to clients from the same venue. Combine that truly personal end-to-end service with state-of-the-art design and technologies within, and ARES DESIGN is well placed to service the growing global demand for personalised and ultra-low volume cars.