Maserati Vignale Spyder
A stunning 'pre-production' example of Maserati's timeless Vignale Spyder, finished in original colours and matching numbers.
The Maserati 3500 GT, launched at the 1957 Geneva Salon, was designed by chief engineer Giulio Alfieri and was essentially developed from the company's first street car, the AG6 of 1946, which was offered only as a rolling chassis and was bodied by numerous exotic coachbuilders. It is a testament to the chassis design that continued to evolve through the 1960s and ultimately powered the Sebring and Mistral. In its 3500 GT form, the twin-plug, 3.5-liter inline-six could carry its passengers upwards of 140 mph, which was an impressive figure for the era.
The best possible components went into the 3500 GT, including a ZF all-synchro four-speed gearbox, a Salisbury axle, Alford and Adler front suspension, and Girling brakes. Mechanical developments were steady throughout production, with a five-speed ZF gearbox made optional in 1960 and then standardized the next year. Massive Alfin drum brakes were offered until 1959, when three key options were added, which were front disc brakes, center-lock Borrani wire wheels, and a limited-slip differential. Lucas mechanical fuel injection was added in 1961.
The rarest factory iteration of the 3500 GT was the spyder, which was bodied by Alfredo Vignale on a slightly shortened 100-inch wheelbase chassis.
A total of 244 spyders were built, including 9 'pre-production' cars of which 3 were prototypes and 6 were early pre-production cars
Chassis 'AM101.761' is one of the early 'pre-production' cars and was originally completed in April 1960. The car was originally black and was sold with a rare 4 speed ZF gearbox.
The 'pre-production' cars can be differentiated from standard production run cars in a number of ways, some of which include:
The roof line is 2cm lower
The nose above the radiator intake is longer and sharper
The Air Intake on the front is much more styled and attractive
The body is narrower
The cars have a long bonnet that stretches up to the base of the windscreen
They have 3 gauges on the dash whereas the later cars have 5 (although 3 was an option)
The side mirror is different
The rear lights are slightly smaller
The rear number plate light is very visually different
Factory records show the engine number to match the chassis with the internal number being '403' and the body number to be '8'. Maserati Classiche Dept. have also confirmed the car was originally supplied with a 4 speed gearbox.
The car has also benefitted from recent mechanical work including:
The gearbox (in the car) was fully rebuilt with new internals.
The rear axle has had a complete rebuild and all the differential internals have been replaced.
The front axle has had a complete overhaul and the car has been returned to the original type disc brakes that should be there (often as they are harder to find people put thicker discs on which are incorrect.
The steering has been fully rebuilt.
The original steering wheel has been rebuilt.
The car has brand new tyres.