In 1993 De Tomaso launched what would be the little Modenese firms last production model. Named Guara after an Argentinean breed of hunting dog, it shared an identical central spine chassis with the Maserati Barchetta (Maserati being owned by De Tomaso at the time) harking back to the layouts used for the Vallelunga and Mangusta back in the sixties. A trio of body styles were made available (Barchetta, Coupe and Spyder), early examples coming with 4-litre BMW V8's. The Guara's central tunnel was formed from aluminium honeycomb with ribbed light-alloy subframes either end carrying the suspension at the front and engine/suspension unit at the rear. Lightweight composite materials were used for the tub whilst a 90-litre fuel tank was positioned inside the central chassis tube evoking memories of the 1963 Sport 2000. Race-derived suspension saw unequal length wishbones installed all round with inboard-mounted pushrod-operated co-axial Koni spring/damper units and anti-roll bars front and back. Whereas De Tomaso had traditionally used Ford engines, the Guara marked a significant departure because of its longitudinally mounted all alloy 4-litre BMW V8. With dual overhead camshafts, four valve cylinder heads, compression set at 10.0:1 and Bosch DME M3.3 engine management, these units gave 304bhp at 5500rpm. A Getrag six-speed gearbox with LSD was coupled to the BMW V8. The cars weighed in at 1200 Kgs. Production of the BMW-powered Guara's started in 1994 and continued until 1998 at which point De Tomaso made the switch to Ford power. By this time nine Barchetta's and between 18 and 24 Coupe's had been manufactured. The car offered for sale here is chassis number 15 was originally used by Sportwagon Engel as their demonstrator. The car is presented in an unusual blue/purple/grey metallic (depending on the light) with cream leather interior. It has been carefully maintained throughout its life and has covered an indicated 18,000 kms from new. A true head turner!
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