DeLorean's stillborn 40-foot bus

Glomming onto a Federal program in the 1970s meant to spur the development of more accessible buses, DeLorean Motor Corporation saw a potential revenue stream. Not that the DMC 80 had anything to do with their now cult-classic sports car, it wouldn't have even been built by DMC. An example of how badge engineering and pimping platforms has been going on forever in the automotive business, DeLorean was essentially planning on affixing the DMC badge to buses from Germany's FFG.

Like the DMC-12, success was not to be had. The Urban Mass Transit Administration's (now Federal Transit Administration) Transbus program was cancelled in 1981 after several years of floundering. DMC couldn't continue to devote resources to the effort, so they abandoned the licensing effort and scrapped a proposal for a bus assembly plant in New York, too. While DeLorean may be little more than a passing curiosity in automotive history, the fact that they got an automobile into production and on the market means that there are plenty of enthusiasts looking for any remaining vestiges of the company. The nature of launching an automotive enterprise also means that there's a ton of material to be strip-mined on eBay. If you find this little footnote in DeLorean's history as fascinating as we do, you can pony up bids and get your hands on a small trove of goodies like blueprints to the non-starter bus plant, a brochure for the DMC 80, and a random DeLorean certificate of achievement. Our favorite item, though, is the memo from John DeLorean to Bill Haddad, essentially saying "call this guy, he can help us, oh yeah, he was also convicted of fraud."

[Source: eBay via Winding Road]

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