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Back To The Future's iconic DeLorean car going back into production in Texas

By Cate McCurry

Published 29/01/2016

The gull-winged car sits in a showroom in Texas
The gull-winged car sits in a showroom in Texas
The Belfast-made sports car, which was used as a time machine in the film Back to the Future
Driving force: John DeLorean at the wheel of the Belfast-made sports car

An American company is set to go back to the future by manufacturing a batch of the famed DeLorean motors.

More than 30 years after its production ground to a halt in the Dunmurry factory where it was made, the car, which was immortalised as Doc Brown's time machine in the Back to the Future trilogy, will be restored to its former glory.

The DeLorean DMC-12 was produced here from 1981, but only 9,000 were made before the company went bust.

Now, the Texas-based DeLorean Motor Company, which bought all the leftover parts from the factory during the 1990s, is making some 300 replicas.

In 1995, the company's director, Stephen Wynne, began selling refurbished DeLoreans in the States. His firm is now able to build new cars as well, following changes to American laws governing small-scale car manufacturers.

"It's fantastic," the DeLorean CEO said. "It is a game-changer for us. We have been wanting this to happen."

Mr Wynne, who brought the DeLorean Motor Company to the Houston area in 1987, will oversee production as the cars are manufactured on American soil for the first time.

"It's huge for us," he said. "It means we're back as a car company again. There's no reason to change the appearance of the car. As we go into the programme, we'll decide what areas need to be freshened up."

Mr Wynne hopes to have the first car completed in early 2017.

A refurbished model will set you back £35,000, while the new model will sell for just under £70,000. The company also sells a range of DeLorean products including branded travel bags.

Dr David Laverty, a lecturer in electrical and electronic engineering at Queen's University Belfast, led a project last year in which his students made a customised electric version of the car. It was thought to be the first one built in Northern Ireland since the last original model rolled off the production line in Dunmurry.

Dr Laverty, who dreams of restoring a DeLorean, said the cars would be snapped up.

"There are a lot of fans that would spend that kind of money, especially in California - people who made their money in start-ups who wouldn't bat an eyelid at spending that kind of money on a DeLorean," he said. "If I had the money, I would buy one too."

Belfast Telegraph

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