HomeMediaThe tale behind the DeLorean DMC-12

The tale behind the DeLorean DMC-12


The DeLorean DMC-12 is a curious case in the automotive timeline. It was eye-catching and promised great things. But in the end, it failed miserably. Thanks to a new video from Donut Media, we now have the whole story surrounding what happened to arguably one of the most iconic cars in modern history.

John DeLorean, the founder of DeLorean Motor Company, took everything he learned from his extensive automotive career at Chrysler, AMC, and General Motors and put it in one basket. Thus, the DMC-12 was born. It featured a stainless steel body to keep weight down, a platform and suspension by Lotus’ founder, and an engine from Peugeot, Renault, and Volvo. Outside of some engineering bright spots, not much else went right for DeLorean.

The company desperately needed funds and Mr. DeLorean was determined to seek out private investment over an initial public offering, but the option remained on the table. Unfortunately, the IPO never happened because the FBI set up the DeLorean founder and planted 59 pounds of cocaine. The FBI then alleged DeLorean was attempting to finance a drug trafficking ring to, in turn, finance the failing DeLorean Motor Company. The company declared bankruptcy almost immediately after his arrest, and even though a jury would find him not guilty, the damage was done.

One of the most interesting parts of the story is the IPO potential. If DeLorean himself would have publicly traded his company, the DMC-12 just might have been a roaring success. However, the flunk of DeLorean Motor Company hasn’t stopped a generation from falling in love with the car, with special thanks to a certain film series: “Back To The Future.”

Today, a Texas company plans to build 300 replica DMC-12s with leftover parts from the 1980s, though when they’ll actually get production up and running remains to be seen. An even better DeLorean could come even farther into the future. John DeLorean’s nephew, Paul DeLorean, has divulged plans to build a flying car of sorts and expects a prototype to be ready next year. Now, wouldn’t that be something?

This article, written by Sean Szymkowski, was originally published on MotorAuthority, an editorial partner of



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