My Classic Car: David’s 1973 De Tomaso Pantera

Childhood crush leads to the car in the driveway | David Cantagallo photos
Childhood crush leads to the car in the driveway | David Cantagallo photos

When I was in Grade 7, my father was an engineer for Chrysler and they did a lot of work with the Carlini Brothers body shop. The Carlini Brothers happened to be cousins to Hank Carlini, Ford Pantera director and right hand to Lee Iaccoca.

Sitting in their body shop under a soft cover was Hank Carlini’s De Tomaso Pantera. My dad lifted the cover and asked if I wanted to see a beautiful car. I immediately fell in love. I told my father then that one day I would own a Pantera.

Flash forward 36 years and I became an HR manager for Ford Motor Company and I found a Pantera covered in 15 years of dust sitting in a barn in northern New York. I took my now 82-year-old father with me for the 9-hour drive to pick her up.

On the ride home I reminded my father of our discussion while standing over Hank Carlini’s Pantera.

My life with the Pantera and my father made a full circle of automotive life.

— David Cantagallo, LaSalle, Ontario, Canada

The day we picked up my car
The day we picked up my car

One thought on “My Classic Car: David’s 1973 De Tomaso Pantera”

  1. Congrats, you are now entrusted to save and maintain her.
    Met you at Lasalle Car Show in the spring.
    These old classics need people like you.
    Hope to see you at future shows.

    Julian Fiacconi

Share your comments