Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Maser offers the siren’s song of exotic Italian luxury, all for the price of a Kia. We’ll have to decide however, if that price is just the tip of the iceberg.

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Among the things that can be considered extraordinarily exasperating are extra innings in a ballgame, a massage in a foreign land without a happy ending, and last Friday’s 1989 Nissan Pulsar NX Sportback vote.

Yep, for most of the day that vote was in a statistical tie and I thought I was going to have to go to four decimal places to determine the outcome. Do you know just how fatiguing it is to go to four decimal places? I’d appreciate it if you’d give some consideration in the future, people. You did pull through in the end, however. So did the Pulsar, and it earned a narrow but decisive 52% Nice Price win despite its being an automatic.

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Today’s 2006 Maserati Quattroporte is another car that can be considered based on its transmission offering, seeing as this model year offered the DuoSelect manumatic that you’ll either love or hate, or far more likely love to hate.

Well, first a little background. The earliest editions of the Mk V (Tipo M139) Q4 came with the DuoSelect gearbox, an electro-hydraulic six-speed derived from Ferrari’s F1 and also infamously known as the Cambiocorsa. These transmissions are identified by the tiny T-bar selector on the console as well as their ability do do either full-auto gear changes or manual via flappy pedals behind the steering wheel. Oh, and they’re also known for going through very expensive clutches like Donald Trump goes through cans of Aqua Net.

The DuoSelect isn’t that much fun in daily usage either, preferring open roads and lots of revs between shifts for the smoothest performance. Around town it can get pretty tiring, at least that’s been my experience. It must have been others’ as well because in 2007 Maserati said “eff-this” and switched out the DuoSelect for a traditional six-speed box from ZF.

That makes the earlier cars less attractive, and hence, often lots cheaper, and in fact this 2006 is pretty damn cheap for something with Pininfarina styling and the Maserati script for its tramp stamp. Despite the bargai bin price, the car is described in its ad as being in excellent condition and comes with a butt-load of features.

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Here you get the sweet Skyhook suspension that gives you the choice of smooth or chunky peanut butter more aggressive settings. It also offers power everything, a Nav system (which is also terrible, IMHO), an interior swathed in leather and wood, and only 52,000 miles on the clock. With the exception of the black painted alloy wheels, it presents as-new in the pics in the ad.

Powering the Q4 is the 4.2-litre F136-Y, a 400-bhp DOHC V8 that also has its origins at Ferrari. This is a cross-plane derivation of the flat-plane V8 used in the F430/F458, and as you might expect it has Ferrari-level demands of your wallet for regular maintenance and when things go tits up. Regardless, it sounds gloriously like planets having angry sex when you dip your foot into it.

Okay, so you’ve decided to delve into the world of exotic car ownership, but you really don’t have a lot of cash which which to fulfill that internal edict. Would this ’06 Q4 and its $17,500 price tag intrigue you enough to make the leap?

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What’s your take on the car—as presented in the ad—and that $17,500 price? Does that feel like a deal to get your Maser on? Or, is that low, low price just the cost of entry into a wallet emptying adventure, and you’d rather play Pokemon Go?

You decide!

Portland OR Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

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H/T to highwindadvisory for the hookup!

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