Maserati 60th Anniversary of 3500GT
Maserati gave itself a couple of birthday presents and a party this year; 2017 is the 60th anniversary of the 3500 GT, the very first GT car that delineated the market in 1957. The Italian marque celebrated with GranTurismo Sport and GranCabrio Sport Special Editions. They chose the 87th Geneva International Motor Show to introduce a conceptual Ermenegildo Zegna beige silk interior in the SUV Levante and even had a three-Michelin-starred chef and Maserati brand ambassador, Massimo Bottura, appear at their birthday party.
The first Maserati GT production car was created in 1957; the 3500 GT made its debut at the Geneva Motor Show, to create a successful market segment, later selling as coupe and cabrio versions. The GranTurismo Sport and GranCabrio Sport Special Editions celebrate the 60th anniversary of that important launch in Maserati history.
GranTurismo Sport and GranCabrio Sport Special Editions
In 1957, Maserati also reached the pinnacle of its racing history: after a memorable season, Juan Manuel Fangio won the F1 championship in his invincible Maserati 250F, creating truly great memories at the 1957 Nürburgring.
The 400-unit Special Edition is based on GranTurismo and GranCabrio Sport versions. The unique, new and exclusive features of these versions include the New Rosso Italiano three-layer paint for the exteriors, reminiscent of Fangio’s red 250F – F1 champion in 1957 – and the link with Maserati’s heritage.
The MC-design 20” alloy wheels with Glossy Black finish matches the Special Edition logo wheel centre caps.
Thrill to the new interior design in Poltrona Frau leather or leather/Alcantara upholstery and interior stitching available in 4 different combinations.
Gasp at other interior details like door sills in carbon fibre featuring the Special Edition logo and the dedicated plate on the central tunnel with a carbon fibre holder, commemorating the anniversary and the limited production run of 400 units.
Levante SUV Show Car
Go weak-at-the-knees for the Levante Show Car, featuring the new conceptual Ermenegildo Zegna 100% silk fabric in the cockpit. E. Zegna developed a new silk fabric specially for Maserati, so you can swoon about the “heightened soft touch effect”…wait for it… in a new beige colour.
The new “Chevron” beige silk fabric is coupled with full premium beige leather on the front and rear seats. The same new beige silk fabric with a “Nattè” pattern, also envelopes the interior door panels, while a “Jersey” pattern has been chosen for the roof lining and sun visors.
A designer label with the E. Zegna logo highlights the luxuriousness of this interior combination, which is paired with full premium black leather covering the upper part of the dashboard and the mostly beige cabin….be still our palpitating hearts!
As if we could stand any more wonder, they announced that “the new E. Zegna beige interior will further enrich the current line-up of luxury interiors, available in 100% silk in anthracite combined with full premium leather in black, red and tan”.
Food for Thought
Massimo Bottura, chef and owner of “Osteria Francescana” restaurant (#1 in “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016”) and Maserati brand ambassador, appeared for a special cooking experience dedicated to the Chosen Few – select Maserati and Ermenegildo Zegna customers.
Maserati 2017 Line Up
Everyone “ooh-ed and ahh-ed” over the complete range of Maserati cars including the Ghibli E, Quattroporte (GTS GranSport & SQ4 GranLusso) saloons and the SUV Levante S.
What price is all this Speciale luxury?
GranTurismo Sport “Special Edition” $155,650
GranCabrio Sport “Special Edition” $172,350
Some people may think that Maserati is the “soft option” amongst Italian sports cars but that ignores the richer and longer history of the marque. Ferrari N.V. was founded in 1939 but its first Ferrari-badged car was not completed until 1947. The upstart Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. was started in 1963 when Enzo Ferrari wouldn’t sell a car to Ferruccio Lamborghini. Maserati was founded more than a century ago in 1914.
Indeed, the Maserati style and design motifs are not as aggressive as Lamborghini nor as controversial as some Ferrari models but that is missing the point. The Maserati tagline is “Luxury, sports and style, cast in exclusive cars“. Its mission statement is “Build ultra-luxury performance automobiles with timeless Italian style, accommodating bespoke interiors, and effortless, signature sounding power”.
Once you understand that “The cost of true luxury is the choice that it affords”, the appreciation of the subtle, yet refined Italian style and sporty performance of a Maserati becomes obvious.
Only Petrolheads Should Read On….
More facts for the ‘petrolheads’: itself an ironic term when you know the Levante Show Car was based on the 275 hp 3.0-litre V6 Turbo Diesel version, combined with “Q4” intelligent all-wheel drive system – which can transfer torque between the axles in just 100 ms and, only when necessary, with 50/50% torque distribution – and an 8-speed automatic gearbox, with integrated Start&Stop System.
GranTurismo Sport “Special Edition”
460 HP 4.7-litre V8 naturally aspirated Ferrari engine.
Max speed: 298 / 300* km/h
0-100 km/h: 4.8 / 4.7* sec.
* with MC Shift transmission
GranCabrio Sport “Special Edition”
460 HP 4.7-litre V8 naturally aspirated Ferrari engine.
Max speed: 285 km/h
0-100 km/h: 5.0 sec.
Suspension & Chassis
Sport Skyhook for the best sporty sensation combined with increased comfort.
Transmission MC Shift (6-speed electro-actuated gearbox, transaxle layout with longitudinal front engine, located behind the front axle – Rear Wheel Drive) or MC Auto Shift (6-speed automatic gearbox, front transmission in unit with the engine, drive shaft, rear differential – Rear Wheel Drive).
Transmission modes Five driving modes: Auto-Normal, Auto-Sport, Manual-Normal, Manual-Sport, Ice.
Dual Cast brake system with drilled and ventilated discs by Brembo. Each disc ID machined with 4 slots and 16 blind holes around the perimeter. The slots keep the brake pads clean, preventing loss of efficiency, and help to break up the flow of water over the surface, while the extra holes ensure uniform wear of the pads and disc to prevent the deterioration of performance over time.
The hood, made entirely from carbon fibre, produces additional downforce at the front, improving steering feel and driving control at high speed.
The extreme appearance has been reinterpreted to create an elegant sportiness. The details that adorn the lines of the car give its elegance and style a sportier feel; a natural progression, truly following Maserati tradition.
Oval exhaust tips with bypass flaps always open in Sport mode for a full Maserati sound experience.
3 “extra campionario” paints available (New Rosso Italiano, Bianco Birdcage, Grigio Lava) and 4 typical Maserati range colours (Nero, Bianco Eldorado, Nero Carbonio, Grigio Granito)
Alloy wheels: MC-design 20” alloy wheels with a new Glossy Black finish
Special Edition logo wheel centre caps in a new finish, matching the wheel colour
The distinctive features of the carbon fibre hood, which comes as standard for body colour and available as an optional extra for the carbon look, are its front central air intake and two rear air vents. The internal part of the hood is in matt carbon fibre featuring a large-scale pattern. The hood of the GranCabrio Sport has been specifically modified, starting from the coupe model, and fitted to respect the restrictive regulations concerning pedestrian impact.
Standard carbon fibre look (front splitter, door handles, side mirrors, rear lip spoiler).
Poltrona Frau leather or leather/Alcantara upholstery and interior stitching available in 4 combinations:
- Bianco Pregiato leather interior with Grigio Chrono insert and Grigio Chrono stitching
- Black leather/black drilled Alcantara interior with Red stitching
- Black leather with White stitching
- Black leather/grey drilled Alcantara interior with Grigio Ghiaccio stitching
Standard carbon fibre look (centre console, paddles shift, instrument surround, carbon finish on dash and door panels trim strips)
Floor mats with coloured piping matching the interior details
Door sills in carbon fibre with Special Edition logo
Dedicated plate on central tunnel with carbon fibre holder, paying tribute to the anniversary and the limited 400-unit production run
Author’s Biography: Melvyn Teillol-Foo (MTF)
Dr Melvyn Teillol-Foo is a contributor on AlphaLuxe web-zine.
He is also a moderator on PuristSPro.com horology discussion fora. He blends his scientific medical objectivity from the pharmaceutical industry with purist passion, in his musings about watches, travel, wine, food and other epicurean delights.
His travelog ‘Lazing’ and feasting ‘Grazing’ series of articles have now passed into “mythic legend” on the original ‘ThePuristS.com’ website. Those were the halcyon days when he was “rich and famous” that he remembers with bittersweet fondness.
Dr Teillol-Foo is a quoted enthusiast on the watch industry, appearing in feature articles and interviews by Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Sunday Times (London), Chronos (Japan), Citizen Hedonist (France) and other publications. He has authored articles for magazines like International Watch (iW) – both U.S. & Chinese editions, ICON (Singapore), August Man (Singapore), Comfort (China) and The Watch (Hong Kong).