The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Maser says a previous owner attempted insurance fraud with the car. He says it’s A-Okay even though it comes with a flood damage title. We’ll have to see if it’s price means the seller is all wet.
If you’ve ever seen the movie Logan’s Run then you know that the ice cavern dwelling robot Box is to be avoided at all costs lest you end up… well, no spoilers from me.
In complete contrast, yesterday’s 2006 Scion xB proved that boxes can be instruments of good as well as misguided evil. Who knew?! That fact must have played in the little box’s favor as fully 70% of you felt it deserved a Nice Price win. And it’s not even Boxing Day.
It’s hard to imagine that yesterday’s Scion and this Maserati Grand Sport are both cars of the same era, so different they appear, sound, and, most importantly drive. The markets for entry-level commuter cars is quite unlike that of entry-level exotics, and yet we get to consider them both within the span of just two days. What a time to be alive.
The Coupé and its Spyder sister (Tipo M138) spearheaded Maserati’s return to the U.S. market in 2001 following an 11-year absence. I’m sure the company thought that after a decade few people would remember the Biturbo days, and they could move on without pitchfork and torch-bearing mobs demanding class action restoration for the earlier cars’ failings. The Coupé and Spyder were both styled by ItalDesign and to be honest I don’t think either is really the best work out of that house.
This Grand Sport edition was introduced in 2004 and offered a number of performance and styling tweaks over the standard cars, the latter of which inexplicably included the addition of “running boards.”
Under the hood was still the 4,244-cc Ferrari-derived DOHC V8, but now with a hairy-chested 395-bhp to its name. The exhaust note from these engines is so virile that it could serve as the soundtrack to a Chuck Norris fight scene. Lamentably the gearbox that came as standard on the Grand Sport was the Cambiocorsa.
I’ve only ever driven a Quattroporte with that auto-manual and I hated it immensely. Maybe it’s better in these because they are Grand Turismos and those are meant for the open road where the recalcitrant gearbox and peaky engine get to play in harmony rather than fight each other from light to light. Skyhook electro-magical suspension also made an appearance on the Grand Sport so don’t plan on buying shocks for this car at the PepBoys.
Speaking of this car, the seller says it’s seen nothing but “top notch” service during the time he’s owned it, which appears to be about two years. He notes that the seats have been recovered, and they look lovely in their two-tone blue and cream new leather duds. The HVAC is said to work, and the tach has the biggest numbers I’ve ever seen. Door cards and carpet look okay too.
The headliner is another story however, as it seems to be in need of repair or replacement. The only other interior issue stated by the seller is that the climate control knobs are hard to turn. This is something which he claims is typical of the cars.
Hmmm, sticky knobs, new upholstery, could this car have suffered some sort of untoward debasement in its history? Perhaps, however the seller says that the scarlet letter of flood damage marring the car’s title is nothing more than a prior owner’s attempt at insurance fraud.
I think it’s reasonable to give him the benefit of the doubt as I would imagine that a car as finicky as a Maserati would go into apoplectic spasms of electrical/mechanical failure if subjected to significant humidity much less going through the rinse cycle.
Something you might want to actually be concerned about is the mileage. At 90,000, a Maserati can be pretty played. Of course some sadist put more than half that on a freaking MC-12 and that’s the most high maintenance of all modern Masers so you know it can be done.
If you wanted to do it the price for this one is $10,500. It’s now your job to vote on whether you believe the seller and can in good conscience say someone should pay that much for it. Alternatively, is its negative provenance just too big a gamble?
H/T to Mustang1 for the hookup!
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