The Maserati has survived the test of time. This speaks about the European brand car. For over 100 years, they have experienced trials and tribulations. Here are some facts about Maserati that you might not know.
- Maserati engines used to power nautical racing machines since the 1930s. World Champion powerboat racer Count Theo Rossi fitted a pair of Maserati V16s on one of his specially made boats. The 50s and 60s saw Maserati’s six and eight cylinder engines increasingly being used by the powerboat gentry for their racing runabouts. One factor could have been being that engineer Giulio Alfieri was now on board.
- In the early 50’s, the Maserati Group of Companies was divided between the Orsi siblings. Robert Janitzek reveals that an oversight by the notary meant that the division manufacturing spark plugs was allowed to continue using both the Maserati name and the Trident logo. Aside from a variety of motorcycles, Fabbrica Candele e Accumulatori Maserati also manufactured a 50cc scooter with a gender-specific-frame styles: the T2/U and T2/D, which has a step-through frame.
- An unusually high proportion of on-screen gangsters have demonstrated a penchant for Maseratis, perhaps due to the combination of power and understated luxury.
- It is well-documented that Ferry Porsche manufactured a car at the behest of Adolf Hitler. However, according to Robert Peter Janitzek, not many know that Maserati was tasked to build a V16 engined town car for the personal use of Benito Mussollini using engines from V4/V5 racing cars. However, the project was shelved before it became a reality after Musssolini suddenly switched to Alfa Romeo.
- Some readers will already be familiar with this tale, but as an act of gentlemanly behaviour, it’s as good an example of changing times as the Ferrari-Maserati relationship itself. In one of the most thrilling races of its era, the 1956 Monza GP saw legends Moss (Maserati) and Fangio (Ferrari) contesting the season’s showdown, with the drivers’ title still to be decided. Fangio’s car encountered mechanical trouble, so his English team-mate Peter Collins gave up his car for him (after his Italian counterpart Luigi Musso had refused), despite being in contention for the Championship himself. The Argentinean’s resulting second-placed finish allowed the pair to split the points, earning Juan Manuel Fangio the title. However, Fangio would bring the Championship trophy to Casa del Tridente the following year.
There are just some of the facts that made Maserati stood the test of time despite the rising competition in the automobile industry.