Skip to main content

DeLorean prototype 1 & production vehicle at The AACA Museum, Inc.

Image placeholder title

Hershey, PA The AACA Museum, Inc. announced a new micro exhibit of two DeLorean automobiles at the AACA Museum, Inc. One is the very first DeLorean DMC-12 Prototype 1 car from 1976 and the other is a 1981 DeLorean DMC-12 Coupe production model. Having the two available side by side gives you the opportunity to see the differences and enjoy a double dose of these iconic automobiles!

The Prototype DeLorean (1976)

This iconic vehicle came directly from working on a movie set about the life of John DeLorean, being played by Alec Baldwin, and scheduled for release later in 2018 for XYZ Films. In October 1976, the first prototype DeLorean DMC-12 was completed by American Automotive Chief Engineer William T. Collins, formerly employed at Pontiac. Initially, the car was intended to have a centrally-mounted Wankel rotary engine. The engine selection was reconsidered when Comotor production ended, and the favored engine became Ford’s “Cologne V6.” Eventually, the French/Swedish PRV (Peugeot-Renault-Volvo) fuel injected V6 was selected. Also, the engine location moved from the mid-engined location in the prototype to a rear-engined installation in the production car. The chassis was initially planned to be produced for a new and untested manufacturing technology known as elastic reservoir moulding (ERM), which would lighten the car while presumably lowering its production costs. DeLorean required $175 million to develop and build his motor company. The prototype helped convince Hollywood celebrities such as Jonny Carson and Sammy Davis, Jr. to invest in the firm. 

The DeLorean DMC-12 Coupe (1981)

The body design of the DMC-12 was a product of Giorgetto Giugiaro of Italy Design and is paneled in brushed SS304 stainless steel. Except for three cars plated in 24-carat gold, all DMC-12s left the factory uncovered by paint or clear coat. Painted DeLoreans do exist, although these were all painted after the cars were purchased from the factory. Several hundred DMCs were produced without stainless panels, for training workers, and are referred to as “black cars” or “mules,” in reference to their black fiberglass panels instead of stainless. These were never marketed.

The DeLorean automobile became widely-known and iconic for its appearance as a vehicular time machine in the Back to the Future franchise and also in the Wedding Singer movie. The one on view is a five-speed manual transmission car with approximately 500 miles on the odometer.

These vehicles are both on loan to the Museum courtesy of Kenneth D. Ullman of Gulf Coast Motor Works. We’re grateful to have them to share with our visitors for the next few months and expect them to be on view through April 30, 2018.

Visitors to the AACA Museum, Inc. can also enjoy several other featured exhibits. The primary featured display is “Getting the Job Done: Vehicles That Earned Their Keep” highlights a diverse variety of vehicles created for specific jobs and business purposes. The new Williams-Clyne Gateway Gallery is home to three award-winning Corvettes as the museum showcases a special exhibit curated by The National Corvette Restorers Society. From mid-November through December the Museum is decked out for the holidays with dozens of themed trees, Grinch scavenger hunt, model trains and more for our annual Cars & Christmas celebration which includes a food and toy drive. We are proud to be an official collection location for Toys for Tots and to be collecting non-perishable food and personal care items for The Central PA Food Bank.

The AACA Museum Inc., a Smithsonian Affiliate, displays beautifully restored and original automobiles, buses, and motorcycles in unique life-like scenes representing the 1890s – 1980s in a cross-country journey from New York to San Francisco. This Museum, a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization, is known to be one of the largest automotive museums. Special exhibits change several times a year and focus on a variety of eras and types of vehicles. The AACA Museum, Inc. is home to the Cammack Tucker Collection; the World’s largest and most prestigious permanent collection of Tucker Automobiles and related artifacts. The Museum is in South Hanover Township, located just off Route 39, one mile west of Hersheypark Drive, Hershey, Pennsylvania. Regular admission $12, seniors age 61 and older $11, juniors age 4-12 $9, children age 3 and under, AACA Museum, Inc. Members and AACA Members are FREE. The Museum is open daily from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and closed on 11/23, 12/24, 12/25 and 1/1. For further information, please call 717-566-7100 or visit

Image placeholder title

161 Museum Drive

Where to Bid

Car Auciton

Check out the Old Cars Auction Calendar

The Old Cars Auction Calendar has the when and where you are looking for when it comes to classic car auctions.