1974 Maserati Merak
The Maserati Merak (model AM122) was introduced at the 1972 Paris Motor Show. The Merak followed in the footsteps of its ‘big brother’ the Bora and was one of the seventies junior supercars, much like Lamborghini’s Urraco and Ferrari’s 308 GT/4, that was going to tackle Porsche head one and be sold in significant quantities to underpin the cash flow of the company during the oil crisis.
Like the Bora, the Merak was designed by Ital Design’s Giorgetto Giugiaro and its ancestry is obvious though there are many subtle but significant differences in the Merak’s design. The Merak was a 2+2 though its rear seats were best described as ‘occasional’ or for golf clubs only! Its Italian competitors all ran V8 engines, however, Maserati opted to use a transversely mounted 2965cc V6 engine that had its roots in the Citroen SM. Given the company was owned by Citroen at the time it is not surprising that a number of Citroen components were used, including the engine as well as Citroen’s hydraulic systems and much of the interior. Interestingly when Alejandro De Tomaso acquired Maserati the car underwent a ‘make over’ of its interior which was well received at the time. In addition to the ‘standard’ Merak, Maserati bought out the Merak SS in 1976 which was lighter and had a more powerful engine and also the Merak 2000 in 1977 specifically for the Italian market which imposed a heavy tax on cars with engines greater than 2000cc capacity.
The formula made good sense and Maserati enjoyed much success with its Merak and 1,820 examples were built in a twelve year period from 1972 to 1983.
We are delighted to offer an Australian delivered factory right hand drive matching numbers example as confirmed by Maserati Classiche. This is a very original and unmolested car aside from a colour change. Interestingly its original colour was ‘arancio’ (orange) which would be very unique and pretty fabulous! The current paint is presentable with a few blemishes and touch ups noticeable. The car currently has a later model Maserati badge on the nose and a Maserati badge on each quarter panel behind the front wheels. Meraks are prone to rust and whilst this one is pretty good it does have some rust in the floors.
Mechanically the car is strong and a recent compression test confirms good even pressure across all cylinders. Since being acquired by Oldtimer Australia this car has had a new exhaust fitted, a new set of correct Campagnolo magnesium wheels fitted (the originals were cracked) and a number of other miscellaneous jobs done to it. The previous owner replaced the sodium filled exhaust valves (this was not done when the engine was rebuilt some years prior) and the cylinder heads overhauled. Additionally, he had the hydraulic pump and priority valve overhauled.
The interior is really good for its age and the cockpit is original and very presentable.
Following is a summary of the cars known history:
– the car was registered in Victoria as LYJ 200 in the 1980’s.
– it was acquired and sold by Autosearch Australia Pty Ltd 438 Wickham Street Fortitude Valley on 31/10/86. The car was red at the time.
– its new owner lived in south east Queensland and kept the car for near on 30 years.
– the are numerous receipts on file for the purchase of engine components from 1987,1989 and 1994 implying the car was off the road for some or all of this time when the engine was rebuilt.
– the car was sold into Sydney in early 2014 and at that time the previous long term owner provided a written note confirming the car had travelled less than 100 miles since it had new tyres fitted, the clutch rebuilt, starter motor rebuilt and other miscellaneous works complete. Additionally the note stated the car travelled less than 15,000 miles since the engine was rebuilt.
– the car had a NSW Vehicle safety Compliance Certificate issued 17/6/2014 to enable it to be registered in NSW.
This is a ‘nice driver’ that can be used ‘as is’ or its condition further improved over time.
These junior super cars are really good news at the minute and Meraks have to be good value compared to equivalent Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Porsches.
- Maserati Merak
- 27022 miles
- 2965 cc