This Maserati 3500 GT Vignale Spyder is no longer available. Please contact us for any further information you may require.
In the history of every car manufacturer there are moments and models that represent a milestone. For Maserati that moment arrived in 1957, a year of outstanding sporting victories for the marque, which saw the 3500GT go into production. Presented at the Geneva Motor Show in March of that year, it was immediately accepted into that exclusive category of the high class 'Gran Turismo'.
The success of the 3500GT Coupé was soon followed by a demand from its customers, especially in the United States, for an open-top version. As early as 1957, Frua produced a Spyder prototype on an early 3500GT chassis. In 1958 Carrozzeria Touring produced two open-top versions. But, it wasn't until 1959 that Maserati found the design they were looking for when Carrozzeria Vignale produced a spyder, based on a design by Michelotti. The Vignale Spyder went into full production in early 1960 and mechanically it appears to have followed the same upgrades as the 3500GT. Early models had disc brakes on the front wheels and drum brakes on the rear wheels.
Early Spyders had a 4-speed gearbox which was later replaced by a 5-speed box in line with the updates made to the 3500GT. Unlike the 3500GT which was bodied in all aluminium, hence the use of the word 'Superleggera', the Spyder Vignale's body and doors were made of steel, for added strength, but the bonnet and boot lid were made of aluminium, to save on weight.
Maserati's 3½-litre straight six engine Maserati's chief engineer Giulio Alfieri had modified the competition six cylinder engine from the Tipo 350S sports racer for road use and incorporated some major components from leading European manufactures. For the power unit Maserati adopted the 3500GT's twin overhead camshaft six cylinder engine fed by three twin choke 42 DCOE Weber carburettors had a cubic capacity of 3,485 with a compression ratio of 8.5 to 1 developing some 220 bhp at 5,500 rpm. The Vignale Spyder adopted identical mechanics as the 3500GT, save for a modified chassis with its wheelbase now reduced by some 100mm. The manually operated retractable hood being concealed in a space behind two occasional rear seats.
This 3500 GTi Vignale Spyder, one of just 242 examples, was originally supplied to the Italian gentleman Ruggero Giordano Zonca of Milan in April 1962. The car was finished in Argento Luna, the stunning shade of Silver-Blue the car is presented in today. Also specified in 1962 were Borrani wire wheels and a black leather interior. This Matching numbers example is today presented in restored condition with substantial work just completed by a very well-known facility in the UK. The car benefits from a beautiful fresh dark blue leather interior. Being a late car it is the more desirable specification with disc brakes all round and a 5 speed box. Originally it would have been fitted with Lucas fuel injection but as is often the case this car has been converted to the "easier to live with" Weber Carburettor setup. Ready to use and enjoy immediately this wonderful example of one of Italy's finest 1960s Open Gran Tourismos is a wonderful opportunity not to be missed.
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