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1969 De Tomaso Mangusta with Gurney Eagle engine – Click above for high-res image gallery

American muscle. Italian design. Cadillac Allanté notwithstanding, that right there is a recipe for success. And few were ever as capable of straddling that divide with one foot in each of the best of both worlds as De Tomaso. Like modern-day Pagani, De Tomaso was founded by an Argentinean based in Modena, and the small automaker created some of the most exotic machinery of its day. Chief among them was the Mangusta – its Italian name means 'mongoose,' which might not seem as ferocious an animal to name a sportscar after as, say, a jaguar, viper or stingray, until you realize that the little rodents are known for eating cobras. Then the Mangusta's mission statement becomes a little clearer.

Like the later revival (which was subsequently sold under Qvale and then MG badges), to say nothing of its prey, the original Mangusta packed Ford V8 power: From 1967 through 1971, 400 Mangustas rolled out of the De Tomaso factory with 289s or 302s installed, out of which fewer than 200 are believed to still be around.

So it's not every day that one goes up for sale. And what you see here is no ordinary Mangusta, either. Its Boss 302 engine was retrofitted with race-spec cylinder heads and intake manifold sourced from Dan Gurney's legendary Eagle racer. The body, which comes on an original chassis separate from the engine in this eBay auction lot, has a touch of rust despite a restoration by celebrity garage Pino's Auto Body and it's painted Ferrari red. The stunning rosso exterior is complimented by a tan leather interior that even has a sterling-silver nameplate. This particular Mangusta once belonged to cosmetics heir and noted car collector Jack Nethercutt before passing into the hands of Vector founder Gerard Wiegert, giving this exceptional exotic an even more interesting pedigree. Check out the enormous gallery of images below and the auction listing after the link for more.

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[Source: eBay Motors]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      I love these cars. I see two in my area every now and then, one a sort of Grabber Blue color, and the other white. I didn't know they were THAT rare though. Wow I feel lucky now. I have a pic of the blue one on my old phone.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Reminds me of a Lamborghini Espada.

      Pretty neat!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Right up there with the Miura for Dragon attracting super hot sexiness. Meow and Grrrrr!...
      • 5 Years Ago
      The orange Pantera in the background of one of the photos is MINE! Wahooo! What an awesome, random find.
      • 5 Years Ago
      love the mangusta and the pantera, love old lambos (and new).
      learned to drive manual trans on a Hall Pantera prepped 72.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Saw one at a car show next to a Muira, just a great looking car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Beautiful, impressive for 1969!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Beautiful automobile and still looks contemporary, but they were vile handling beasts.
        • 5 Years Ago
        LB, the Mangusta wasn't the first or last car with lift throttle over steer, but it may have been amongst the most extreme. Most cars would need at least a snow covered parking lot to get as easily sideways.

        Would have made a great drift car.