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May 17, 2000

Georgia sports and racing car maker Panoz Auto Development has begun sales of its hand-built Esperante, right, an aluminum-intensive "sport convertible" with styling that pays homage to the luxury European marques of the 1950s and '60s. Panoz intends for the $79,868 Esperante to compete in the exclusive luxury roadster market. The two-seat Esperante features a 4.6-liter, 320-horsepower aluminum V-8 that can propel it from standstill to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. Panoz said it expects to build about 250 of the cars a year and has taken deposits for 160. For more information, see http://www.panozauto.com.

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