The following is a list of our most common frequently asked questions.
What is Panoz Auto Development?
Panoz Auto Development is America’s premier manufacturer of high-performance automobiles. Panoz has been known for making high-quality, hand-made vehicle at their facility since 1989.
Who founded the company?
Panoz Auto Development Company was founded by pioneer and entrepreneur Daniel Panoz (PAY-noze). The company was the culmination of Panoz’s lifetime love affair with the automobile, dating from the moment he traced his name in dust across the nose of a sports car while a mere child. By 1989, the 27-year-old had opened his company based on a belief that high-performance cars, such as those built in Europe, could be competitively manufactured in America. In contrast to the high-maintenance Euro cars, he set forth to build automobiles that would be reliable, easily serviced and a good value.
Where is Panoz headquartered?
Panoz builds vehicles in a 100,000 square-foot complex near Hoschton, Georgia, approximately 55 miles north of Atlanta. The original Panoz workshop was a converted 2000 square-foot Department of Transportation salt storage barn.
What was the first Panoz vehicle built?
The 1990 Panoz Roadster was the first car in the Panoz stable. Based on a chassis by the legendary Frank Costin, the Roadster was armed with a front/mid-mounted five-liter Ford V8 and was the first production car in the U.S. to use a Superplastic formed aluminum body.
Panoz became the first American manufacturer to design and build a production Aluminum Intensive Vehicle when the original Roadster was completely redesigned in 1996. The conventional steel space-frame was replaced with an advanced twin-tiered extruded aluminum chassis and the pushrod cast-iron engine set aside for an all-aluminum, 305-horsepower 32-valve V8. The A.I.V. Roadster would carry the torch for the company for more than three years.
When did Panoz enter racing?
Daniel Panoz and his father Donald created Panoz Motor Sports in 1996. They tapped racing guru Adrian Reynard to help build two front/mid-engined, rear-wheel drive Esperante GTR-1 to compete in races such as the grueling 24-hour Le Mans, Le Mans Prototype, and the USRRC Team Championship. Bucking conventional wisdom, these were the first front-engined racing cars to compete at Le Mans in decades.
With no racing experience, Panoz went head-to-head with Porsche, Mercedes, and Ferrari. After 18 hours of racing, Panoz was running ninth overall when an oil failure knocked it out of contention. Though neither of the two Panoz works cars finished, it was one of the most impressive showings by an independent manufacturer in the history of Le Mans. The thunderous Panoz cars left an indelible mark on the racing community and are still favorites for their chest-pounding blast.
What successes did Panoz enjoy in racing?
In 1998, the Panoz GTR-1 finished Le Mans seventh overall and won the USRRC Team Championship. In 1999, an open-top version of the GTR-1 was developed to compete in the American Le Mans Series’ top class, Le Mans Prototype (LMP). The Panoz LMP-1 Roadster S was extremely competitive, winning the 1999 Team and Manufacturers Titles in the American Le Mans Series ahead of cars from sports car legends BMW and Audi. In its first-year of competition, the Panoz team won the 2002 Trans Am championship. The cars were competitive in 2003, winning ALMS races twice against larger teams.
Does Panoz still build racecars?
Panoz Auto Development builds purpose-built racing cars. The Panoz GT-RA is used to train students in the Panoz Racing School, which are located at four tracks across the United States and Canada. The Panoz WGTS is the official racing car for the Women’s Global GT Series, and all-female support race for the American Le Mans Series.
Panoz partnered with the Sports Car Club of America to build the GTS, a 385-horsepower spec racer that will make competitive GT racing affordable. The car was reclassified in 2003 to compete in the GT2 class.
When was the Esperante introduced?
The Panoz Esperante was introduced in April 2000, which was the second vehicle from Panoz in less than ten years. While the Roadster was designed for driving purists, the Esperante was meant to be a luxury sports car capable of higher performance and broader appeal.
What makes the Esperante so much different from European sports cars?
The Esperante is almost completely aluminum, allowing for a lower weight. Using the aerospace industry’s technique of Superplastic Forming, body panels are molded from aluminum in a completely new way that is stronger than steel, but also was more dent-resistant and paint-friendly. In addition, the chassis is assembled by using aluminum extrusions that are bonded together as opposed to welded, making the chassis much stronger.
In addition, the automobiles are reliable, easily serviced and a good value. This allows discriminating owners to enjoy them much more than high-maintenance cars from Europe. The Esperante has been so influential in its design and construction that many of the techniques and materials pioneered in the car are being employed by companies such as Aston Martin and Ferrari.
What are the same specs for the Esperante?
Weighing only 3,197 pounds and propelled by a 320 HP aluminum 4cam V-8, the Esperante has a stunning 9.99 power to weight ratio. This allows the car to hit 62 MPH in about 4.9 seconds and run the quarter mile in only 13.4 seconds at 107.3 mph. The powerful brakes stop the car in just 122 feet from 60 MPH, while the suspension achieves and incredible 0.96g lateral acceleration. Add to this that the Panoz Esperante is completely handmade, from its aluminum-encased engine to the hand-sewn leather seats, and the car is the pinnacle of the luxury sports car.
How many models of Esperantes are available?
The Esperante is available in the base model, the GT-LM and the new GT. The luxury sports cars are built in both coupe and roadster configurations. MSRP starts at US$88,950.
What is the base model?
The Esperante is a class leading, American sports car that competes with European cars such as the Aston Martin DB7 Vantage, Ferrari 575 and BMW Z8. The Esperante’s sweeping lines and subtle curves make it among the most beautiful vehicles in the world.
The Esperante was designed for individuals who value style, quality and performance. The car is a pure, state-of-the-art vehicle with an aluminum chassis and lightweight aluminum body. The Panoz Esperante is equipped with anti-lock brakes, electronic traction control, dual front airbags, power convertible top, a full leather interior in its luxurious cockpit, which includes a Blaupunkt audio system with CD player. The car features function full carbon fiber superstructures. Only a few hundred of the luxury sport convertibles are built each year.
The Esperante’s blend of graceful design, hand-built craftsmanship and modern technology can best be appreciated when behind the wheel. The smell of the hand-sewn leather seats, the taut throw of the shifter and the roar of its V8 are a delight to the senses. The muscular suspension carves through hairpin turns with nimble precision. The entire experience is as much spiritual as it physical, forming a relationship between driver and car that is rare and special.
Can Esperantes be tailored?
Panoz offers a long list of options to custom build a car for just about any individual’s taste or needs. Customers are encouraged to visit the factory in Georgia and review options before ordering a car from their dealer.
What is the GT-LM?
Introduced at the New York Auto Show in April 2003, the Esperante GT-LM is built with a race-inspired performance package. The GT-LM has a redesigned suspension, improved aerodynamics and a supercharged 420 HP V8. MSRP for the GT-LM begins at $121,325.
The GT-LM gives the remarkably composed and refined touring version of the Esperante platform a more sporting tone based on the company’s racing experience. The rear subframe was redesigned to feature a more aggressive suspension geometry and increase structural stiffness while also reducing its weight. New lightweight tubular control arms minimize the unsprung mass and a double-isolated coil-over spring/shock assembly increases performance.
The Esperante GT-LM has a new nose, tail bumper fascias and rocker panels. These components are complemented by a fixed carbon fiber hardtop and subtle “duck tail” rear spoiler, which combine to increase aerodynamic downforce. Other refinements include revised front and rear lighting, along with a custom front and rear grill.
Standard equipment includes 17-inch aluminum BBS RK wheels with Pirelli P-Zero Rosso tires, a sport tuned suspension and dual-piston aluminum PBR caliper with Brembo vented rotors. The interior features new sport seats with more aggressive bolstering and a host of billet aluminum trim enhancements. Numerous options are available.
Will the Esperante GT-LM be raced?
Panoz will build on its impressive motorsports heritage by taking on the GT class in the ALMS and 24 hours of LeMans with a race prepared variation of the GR-LM.
What is the GT?
The Esperante GT features the dramatic body treatment and many of the performance enhancements offered on the Panoz Esperante GT-LM. The car includes the GT-LM’s revised suspension aerodynamics package and interior features. The GT is a lighter, faster, and stronger Esperante with a competition flair. Panoz will begin production of the Esperante GT in the first quarter of 2004. MSRP for the GT is $96,271
What is the “Panoz Experience?”
Prospective customers can visit the factory in Georgia, stay at the world famous Chateau Elan. This stay is much like a trip to Maranello in the 1950s to visit Ferrari. If the customer orders an Esperante within 30 days from their dealer, the cost of their stay at the Chateau Elan will be reimbursed.
What warranty is available on Panoz products?
Every Esperante is backed by a 3 year/36,000 mile warranty, 24-hour roadside assistance and can be maintained by any Panoz, Lincoln-Mercury, or Ford Service Center.
What is Panoz planning for in the future?
Panoz Auto Development will always vow to be on the cutting edge of vehicular technology. Currently, Panoz is developing the use of a color-molded plastic that will hold up better than paint and allow for a safer and easier alternative to machine painting. This new plastic, combined with a new modular aluminum chassis design, will make Panoz the automobile manufacturer to catch up to in the coming years.
Where can I find more information about Panoz?
Information is available at www.panozauto.com or by contacting Scott Black at (214) 520-3430.