- 1967 New York Motor Show car
- Last straight-six Maserati
- Matching engine/chassis numbers
- One of 40 examples built
At the start of the 1950s, Maserati was still producing cars on a small scale. It built high performance sports cars that were a little too demanding for the wealthy clientèle just starting to appear after the war. They were looking for models that kept the same allure and were fast, but which had improved levels of comfort and security. The task of developing such a car was given to Giulio Alfieri, the brilliant engineer who joined Maserati in 1953. Four years later, the Maserati stand at the Geneva Motor Show displayed a stunning prototype of the 3500GT, with a coupé body designed by Touring. In 1963, following the Sebring presented the year before, Maserati unveiled the car that would unequivocally replace the 3500 GT. It was the Mistral, elegantly designed by Frua. A curved rear window serving as the tailgate was cleverly and discreetly incorporated into the flowing shape of the car, an original concept at that time. It was available in 3.7 and 4-litre versions, with just 40 examples of the 3.7-litre produced, making it an extremely rare car. It sold in France for 74 000 FF, and was more expensive than an Aston DB4GT, a Ferrari 250 GT SWB and twice the price of an E-Type Jaguar !
As the copy of the factory Avviso Spedizione indicates, this stunning Mistral Spider was delivered new to the importer in New York, Foreign Car City Inc., presented in Bianco Polo Park with red leather interior, automatic gearbox and air-conditioning. This same document states that the car was destined to be exhibited at the 1967 New York Motor Show. The Mistral sold at the show and was registered in 1968, remaining in the US until June 2007 when it was imported by Michaël Boertien, the Dutch Maserati collector. The car was acquired by the present owner in 2008, who had it registered in France and then undertook a full cosmetic and mechanical restoration. Work to the body was carried out by ODS, the well-known workshop near Paris, and we have all the related invoices and photographs that show the Mistral stripped back to bare metal. It changed colour at this point at the owner's request. The mechanical work was undertaken by Fernand Maria, the talented mechanic who has looked after Italian cars for some of the biggest French collections. The top end was completely rebuilt with new pistons, bearings, rods, timing chain and valve guides with adjustment and re-surfacing of the cylinder head and refurbishment of the valve seats. In short, extensive work was carried out to enable this sublime cabriolet to drive perfectly today. The original, beautifully patinated, leather interior has been conserved and the carpets also appear to be original. It will be delivered to its new owner with the original manual and a large file of invoices and photographs documenting its restoration.
The driveability, unique sound and beautiful styling of the Maserati Mistral Spider boosted the image of the marque from Modena. Sensibly fitted today with a five-speed ZF manual gearbox, it provides enormous pleasure to drive. Moreover, being one of just 40 examples in this 4-litre Spider version, this is an extremely rare car.