1971 Maserati Ghibli
- Year of manufacture1971
- Mileage12 513 mi / 20 138 km
- Car typeOther
- Engine numberOA SS2956
- Interior colourOther
- Exterior colourOther
Well-Preserved and Very Rare 4.9 Liter Ghibli SS in Great Colors. One Owner for 47 Years.
Maserati Ghibli SS 4.9
s/n AM115/49/2200, Engine no. OASS2926
Metallic Blue with Cream Leather
Awarded “Car Designer of the Century”, Maserati Ghibli designer Giorgetto Giugiaro commanded mastery over automobile aesthetics and innovation, designing a wide range of award winning cars. Not content to rest on his prodigious output while at Bertone where he’d already penned future masterpieces, he moved on to Ghia boldly departing from the still trendy rounded forms of the early 50s and 60s. In 1966, one of his most prolific years, Giugiaro delivered four of the most critically acclaimed designs of the decade, the finest among them being the Maserati Ghibli. Named for the warm and high-speed exotic desert winds, the chiseled Ghibli debuted at the 1966 Turin Motor Show, gaining immediate acclaim as the most refined and elegant of Giugiaro’s advanced linear and aggressive designs, and launching an entirely new trend in car design. The Ghibli not only featured a fresh body design, the mechanical features were among some of the most advanced available for any road car.
Maserati initially outfitted the Ghibli with their race-bred 306 hp dry-sump 4.7-liter quad-cam V8 fed by four Weber carburetors, coupled to a ZF five-speed manual transmission and limited slip differential. Competent drivers could reach 60 mph in less than seven seconds with handling being reported among the best of the period. Dramatically low and wide, the disc brake equipped Ghibli was further improved in 1969 with the 4.9 liter engine (as equipped on this car). Under the SS designation, power increased to 330hp, making it the fastest Maserati road car ever produced, capable of 170 mph and improved 0-60 times.
According to the present owner, this desirable 4.9 liter Ghibli SS was owned and enjoyed by a single Florida owner from new until 2018. Over the decades, the car appears to have been mechanically serviced and maintained with driving in mind. The car is presented in striking colors and sports honest finishes and driver mechanicals. The paint is bright and smoothly executed with good coverage and high gloss but close inspection reveals numerous surface flaws and signs of use. While under consignment, the car has been treated to localized paintwork at the left front corner, while tending to a few other minor cosmetic blemishes. There are a few signs of general use along the door gaps and some road chips, but the car has an attractive driver level presentation. The doors, hood, and rear glass shut with crisp and firm latching exhibiting good fit and panel match consistent with the presentation throughout the car. The wheels show minor cosmetic imperfections but are otherwise nicely preserved, shod with Pirelli Cinturato tires. Chrome plating on bumpers and various other trim is handsome, though the bumpers showing minor rippling, some hazing, and a few areas where the plating has lifted. Glass throughout is in good condition overall showing light surface imperfections and a few small chips in the windscreen.
The original interior remains complete and correct but is showing signs of age. The seats are both capable of support and serviceable driving, but will require attention at some point. Carpeting will also warrant replacement and other interior surfaces will need attention, but some of the remaining materials and surfaces can be revived through selective preservation in the hands a skilled upholsterer. The center console and door panels are complete and presentable, but not without small marks and light stains. The top of the dashboard has some stains, but remains original. Very nice instrumentation adorns the wide dashboard with clear and consistent coloring, bright numbers, and crisp needles. Toggle switches and various knobs are also in good condition overall. The steering wheel and center horn button are particularly nice and will sparkle even more so when the promising interior has been freshened. In the rear of the car, the expansive glass stretches out over the spare tire compartment exposing the spare wheel. Although the rear spare tire cover panel is missing, the remaining side panels are clean and properly in place.
The engine compartment is very complete and undisturbed retaining the original dual snorkel air cleaner, proper hosing and fasteners, and correct engine plates, markings, and largely original finishes. Though not detailed for show, the integrity of the finishes reveal the car has been serviced and maintained with the intent of retaining original components and features. The rare 4.9 series engine was a landmark for Maserati, and has since become the most coveted of the Ghibli production run in part due to their powerful output, but also to their refinement. Offering considerably more displacement than even a Daytona, the 4.9 Ghiblis are top-tier cars in both beauty and performance. The undercarriage of this car is clean and tidy with no evidence of structural damage, displaying honest finishes reflective of general use.
Driving this Maserati, one is reminded of the magic of driving a car that has never been restored. Given that the Ghibli was one of the earliest to arrive on the budding Supercar scene, it promptly lives up to the moniker delivering grace and power. The car starts easily, releasing a finely tuned exhaust note as the engine settles into a gentle but eager quad cam idle. Oil pressure is good as indicated by the gauge, delivering intended readings for noted engine systems. The 5-speed operates quite nicely with smooth action and a predictable clutch pedal as throttle comes on strong throughout the power band. At speed, the Ghibli opens up and reveals it’s true touring nature, settling in as the speedometer climbs. 4-wheel disc braking is very efficient given the weight of the car, bringing the Ghibli down evenly without pulsing. Even under leisurely driving, the gently wrapped windscreen, sweeping rear glass, and comfortable driving position offer surprisingly good visibility – yet another remarkable feature of the innovative Giugiaro design. Ghiblis are known for their spacious cabins, and options like telescopic steering columns (not found on Ferraris of the era), aiding in their ability to accommodate larger drivers while offering touring comforts and performance features.
With its refined 4.9 liter quad-cam V8, stunning looks, and coachbuilt Ghia and Giugiaro provenance, this Maserati Ghibli SS presents a wonderful opportunity for a collector or enthusiast to drive, refine, and enjoy one of the most important and celebrated sports cars of the Golden Era of Italian design.