DeLorean Motor Company

The DeLorean Motor Company (DMC) was the project of the former General Motors vice president John DeLorean, produce a sports car. DMC was founded in 1975 and 1981 began in Northern Ireland Dunmurry to craft a production model with a body made ​​of stainless steel.

The drawn by Giorgetto Giugiaro wedge shape and the matte sheen of brushed stainless steel unpainted body of the gullwing awarded the first and only model " DeLorean DMC-12 " is a modern and unique appearance. However, the production had to be discontinued after 21 months and about 9200 vehicles produced.


To keep production costs slightly lower than in the USA possible to DeLorean decided his factory in a country to build with high unemployment as possible to get by the respective government subsidies. So the choice fell on the former crisis area Dunmurry in Northern Ireland; for the Labour government had him after the contract paid at the end of the 1970s, the sum of more than £ 100 million and various tax benefits made ​​possible. In the area of ​​West Belfast, the unemployment rate was very high at this time, and the British government promised by the creation of more than 2,000 new jobs less encouragement of the population for the IRA.

The manufactured in Dunmurry model DMC-12 sold initially as expected, good. Even before the start of production were present over 20,000 orders. Even if the sale price is more than double the originally planned 12,000 dollars (hence the name DMC -12 = $ 12,000 ) was that demand was high. In the United States, the main market, the car was offered at sales launch for approximately $ 25,000. The list price of a Porsche 911 was only slightly higher. It justified neither performance nor the build quality of the vehicle that price. Nevertheless, the DMC had taken nearly $ 26.5 million in the first half year after production started in the spring of 1981 and seemed to be an attractive product on the right track, the liabilities to investors that included Jr., among others, Johnny Carson and Sammy Davis, and the British government to replace.

But then experienced the automotive industry 1980/1981 one of the largest international crises for over fifty years. The paragraph numbers in the main market of DeLorean, the U.S., fell rapidly from twelve to under six million cars per year. The market for sports cars and luxury cars broke a particularly strong, as well as many established manufacturers who profited from the U.S. market and the strong dollar, such as Porsche or Ferrari, hit hard. DeLorean was simply not yet established enough to cope with such a crisis. In addition, the young company had invested existing capital and still can not form any reserves. On top of that DeLorean had almost doubled production figures due to the initial high response after introduction of the DMC-12. Now steeply declining sales, the company faced off guard. This unpredictable for John DeLorean situation meant that the DMC-12 had to first be stockpiled, better to come in the hope that the increase in demand in the U.S. back into the business.

The crisis in the automotive market, the unreasonably high price, some glaring quality issues which required costly repairs through the dealer, as well as the expensive wing door construction exacerbated the financial situation of the DMC. At the same DeLorean was a new government in the UK over. In 1979, the Conservative Party came to power in England. The new Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher had been forced to watch as developed in the pilot project " DMC " of the previous government gradually becoming a runaway financial and political disaster. But John DeLorean had no choice, as his biggest donors, the UK government to ask again for a credit increase. This shot up to 1982 another 30 million pounds after. On 20 October 1982, the British government, the DeLorean Motor Company, however, continued under receivership.

A total of about 9,200 DMC -12 were made ​​; the vehicles that were not sold by the end of the DeLorean Motor Company, were sold as a package to a former contractor. The company founder John Zachary DeLorean died in 2005.

A Texan investor has now taken over the shell company and now offers in Humble, Texas, DeLorean vehicles " remanufactured ", which have undergone a profound revision and restoration process. It should have been eliminated all the fundamental weaknesses of the DMC -12. In October 2011, the (new) DeLorean Motor Company announced the production of electric DeLorean from 2013, the sale price should be at $ 90,000.


More DeLorean models

Parallel to the development of the DMC -12 John Z. DeLorean made ​​already thinking about expanding its product range. Several ideas were played out, and three of them reached the stage of serious planning. With the closure of the plant but also failed them.

DeLorean Medusa

As DeLorean Medusa the design of a four-seat sedan with gullwing doors is called. This was based on a study of Italdesign, the Giugiaro unveiled at the Turin Auto Show the public in 1980 under the name Lancia Medusa. The study Ital Design had wanted to show that optimal aerodynamics and the interior comfort of a large sedan were compatible. The Medusa had a drag coefficient of only 0.263 and thus went so far as the most aerodynamic vehicle in history. Technically the car based on the platform of the Lancia Beta Monte Carlo, was therefore designed as a mid-engine vehicle. Contrary to some reports, the Lancia Medusa had no wing doors, but four regular, front -hinged doors.

The mid-engine concept was probably the main reason that John Z. DeLorean interested for the Lancia Medusa by Giugiaro. In the course of 1981, there were several discussions between DeLorean and Giugiaro on the inclusion of a production of the Medusa, and Giugiaro created on DeLoreans request, several sketches in which a Medusa was to see the front part of the DMC -12 was adapted. Giugiaro provided also include reflections on, at least the front equip the Medusa with double doors. Again, it but remained in sketches; appropriate alterations to the Medusa exhibition vehicle were not made.

In September 1981, the talks were so advanced that DeLorean presented in an interview with Giugiaro a production start in 1984 in view and thereby assumed an annual production of 10,000 copies.

Given the crisis of the company in early 1982 the design of the Medusa was not pursued.

DeLorean TR 8

After the opening of bankruptcy proceedings in 1982 consideration was given, utilization the DeLorean factory in Dunmurry. It seemed clear that this was not feasible solely with the DMC-12. Therefore, the bankruptcy trustee had the idea to make a smaller, cheaper model next to the DMC-12. The choice fell on the Triumph TR7, the production of British Leyland had set a year earlier. The bankruptcy trustee negotiated in the spring of 1982 with Leyland about a takeover of the rights and all production of the TR7; the car should then be manufactured and sold with minor visual changes in Dunmurry as DeLorean. According to British press reports, the Leyland management agreed with the proposal; ultimately failed Considerations such as these in the fall of 1982 in light of the arrest of John Delorean.