DeLorean Introduces Alpha5 EV, Decades After Stephen Wynne Resurrected the Company

Dan Clarendon - Author
By

Jun. 10 2022, Published 3:10 p.m. ET

Stephen Wynne’s net worth isn’t known, but we know the former mechanic had access to $5 million at some point in his life, because he devoted at least that much money took to resurrect the DeLorean Motor Company into the iteration that just introduced its Alpha5 electric car.

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Wynne previously teased the Alpha5 project in an interview with The Detroit News in February. “We are making an all-new, fully-electric, gull-winged, two-door sports car,” he said. “More details to come.”

Read on for more details about Wynne’s DeLorean obsession and the company’s surprising second act.

For Stephen Wynne, DeLoreans “just seemed like the opportunity to go for.”

Wynne, a native of Liverpool, England, is an auto mechanic who emigrated to the U.S. in 1980, according to CNBC. He settled in Southern California and started a foreign car repair shop. But it was an American car that caught his attention — the DeLorean. Eventually, he launched a service and parts business called DeLorean One. “There was no competition,” he told CNBC in 2016. “Nobody wanted to touch them, and it just seemed like the opportunity to go for.”

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Meanwhile, the first DeLorean Motor Company, founded by John DeLorean, launched in 1975 and began production in 1981. But a series of unfortunate conditions — an economic recession, high oil prices, high interest rates, a steep exchange rate, and underwhelming customer reviews — led to the company’s downfall in a matter of months, even before Back to the Future made the DeLorean a fan favorite.

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In the mid-1990s, Wynne found out that a holding company wanted to sell the DeLorean Motor Company’s intellectual property and inventory. He bought both and started a new version of the DeLorean Motor Company, with headquarters in Humble, Texas.

The company focused on servicing existing DeLoreans at first, but a 2016 change in federal law meant that the new DMC could start building new replicas of the original DeLorean. By the time CNBC caught up with Wynne, he had sunk $5 million into the company. “We’ve forgone profits because our holding costs are so high,” he said at the time. “But we’ve been holding on to the hope that we could put ourselves in the position that we’re in today.”

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The company’s new Alpha5 is “a representation of the past 40 years of DeLorean.”

Wynne still oversees the company’s classic DeLorean division, according to Autoevolution, but Joost de Vries, a former Tesla and Karma Automotive VP, has been DeLorean Motor Company’s CEO since last December. Under de Vries, DeLorean revealed details about its Alpha5 electric car late last month.

The Alpha5 is a spiritual successor to the original DeLorean and features a 100-kWh battery, an expected range of 500 kilometers (more than 310 miles) on one charge, and zero-to-60 acceleration in 2.99 seconds, according to MarketWatch. According to de Vries, the first run of Alpha5 cars is designed for racetracks but a street-legal version of the car is forthcoming.

“The Alpha5 is a representation of the past 40 years of DeLorean,” DeLorean Chief Marketing Officer Troy Beetz said in a statement, per NPR. “There was this enormous responsibility to make sure we honored the history of the DeLorean brand, but an even greater responsibility in curating its future. I think we did both with the Alpha5.”

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