DeLorean will unveil its new DMC-12 in December 5, 2016. With major upgrades

The approval of the Low Volume Vehicle Manufacturing Act has been a major change for DeLorean Motor Company’s plans. So much so that the now Texas based company announced the intention of offering a new version of the DMC 12 this year, as a 2017 model. The big news this time is that DMC has released the upgrades that the modern DMC-12 will present. And has also placed a counter in its website that lets us know when the company will reveal its new car: December 5, 2016.

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According to the company, we are now 181 days away from the official presentation. And the best news for the car is that it will have a much stronger engine than the original 97 kW PRV (Peugeot, Renault and Volvo) 2.8 V6 engine. As we have already told our readers, the company was studying 4 suppliers of 4-cylinder and V6 engines that ranged from 200 kW up to 261 kW. Two American and two foreign suppliers. Ford’s 2.3 Ecoboost engine produces exactly 261 kW for the Focus RS. Toyota’s famous 3.5 V6, the same one used by Lotus Evora, but without the supercharger, produces 200 kW. DMC has announced it is now working with only 2 engine suppliers and, in the worst case scenario, it will be twice as powerful. In the best, 2.7 times better.

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The chassis will have to be reinforced. The original ones were made of mild steel coated with epoxy, but epoxy ages and cracks. When the chassis flexed with time, it broke the epoxy coat and exposed the mild steel to corrosion. With that in mind, the chassis for initial production will be NOS (New Old Stock) units. It is important to remember the Texan DMC has bought all stocks from the original DMC, what gave it the idea of building new cars in the first place. But these NOS mild steel chassis will receive a brand-new treatment: they will be electrocoated for corrosion protection and powder coated for a better appearance. When the NOS chassis run out, reproductions of it will enter production with an upgraded front suspension.

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The brand-new DMC-12 will also have a major change in its electrical system. In place of the traditional harness, it will get a multiplex architecture that will both reduce weight and improve reliability, with weather-proof connectors. The multiplex architecture will also allow new equipment to be installed, such as a GPS navigation system with touchscreen, for example, as well as built-in diagnostics.

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The use of larger 17-inch or 18-inch wheels, supplied by a Tier 1 wheel manufacturer (Alcoa? Superior Industries?), will allow for a major improvement in the brakes. A supplier in “suburban Detroit”, “one of the best known names in the automobile industry”, is working with DMC to make them available. We would bet on Continental for that task.

Even though things seem to be progressing really well, the regulation for the Low Volume Vehicle Manufacturing Act, which was expected to be edited by December 2016, is not going as expected. This may halt the new DMC-12 production, as well as other low volume carmakers’ efforts. Maybe the presentation of the new car in December will work as a way to press lawmakers into getting their work done. Considering the new DMC-12 will cost more than US$ 100,000, all his buyers will be influential people, many of which will love to support the low volume car producers’ cause.

Gustavo Henrique Ruffo

I have been an automotive journalist since 1998 and have worked for many important Brazilian newspapers and magazines, such as the local edition of Car and Driver and Quatro Rodas, Brazilian's biggest car magazine. I have also worked for foreign websites, such as World Car Fans and won a few journalism prizes, among them three SAE Journalism Awards and the 2017 IAM RoadSmart Safety Award. I am the author of "The Traffic Cholesterol", a book about bad drivers that you can buy at Hotmart, Google Play, Amazon and Kobo.