The Italian sports-car brand De Tomaso Automobili, which is planning a revival with the P72 supercar, said it is moving its operations to the U.S. from Europe.
De Tomaso will build the P72 in North America and is "deep" in discussions with multiple states as potential locations for U.S. operations including production, design and corporate facilities, the company said in a statement released Wednesday.
A formal announcement is expected in the next six months, it said.
De Tomaso was founded in 1959 by the Argentinian racing driver and businessman Alejandro De Tomaso in Modena, Italy. It has a strong U.S. connection because of historical tie-ups with American automakers.
Ford Motor Co. acquired an 84 percent stake in the company in 1971, with de Tomaso himself holding the rest. He suffered a stroke in 1993, after which his heirs liquidated the company. Along with Ford components, De Tomaso looked to entrepreneur Carrol Shelby to help source engines and car designers in the 1960s.
The De Tomaso brand was bought in 2015 by Hong Kong-based Ideal Team Ventures for just over 1 million euros ($1.2 million) following an earlier failed revival attempt that saw its then-chairman Gian Mario Rossignolo arrested by Italy's tax police for misuse of public funds.
On Wednesday De Tomaso said production of the P72 is expected to begin late 2022, almost two years later than promised last year at the car's unveiling at the UK’s Goodwood Festival of Speed in July 2019.
"Our mission is to bring back the romance, passion and elegance of the luxury American automotive industry with our European sophistication and artisan processes," De Tomaso said in its release.