Motoramic

January 6: John DeLorean, automotive rebel, was born on this date in 1925

Justin Hyde
Motoramic

Imagine if instead of founding his own automaker, Elon Musk had risen through the ranks of General Motors — gaining fame for iconic models along the way — and you would have an idea of the role John DeLorean carved for himself in Detroit. Born in poverty, trained as an engineer, DeLorean combined a passion for cars with a talent for self-promotion not seen before or since in Motor City boardrooms. No one person ever took majority credit for the Ford Mustang or Chevy Camaro, but DeLorean gets the nod for crafting the original muscle car, the Pontiac GTO, along with the Firebird and several other models, all while building a name on the Hollywood and Manhattan social scene. His desire for the spotlight led him to quit GM in 1973 and eventually build his own gull-wing DeLoreans, before business troubles and an "American Hustle"-level sting (which he successfully beat in court) drove him to bankruptcy. Here's a rare look at the short film DeLorean made to sign up dealers and investors for his motor company, a mini-manifesto of his view of cars in that era:

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