Weekly Historical Car
Maserati Sebring was a two-door 2+2 coupé made by Maserati from 1962 until 1968. Based on the Maserati 3500, the Sebring was aimed at the American Gran Turismo market and nicknamed after Maserati's 1957 racing victory at the 12 Hour race. A single two-seat spyder was built by Vignale in 1963 but did not enter production.
The Series I (Tipo AM 101/S) was shown at Salon International de l'Auto 1962 and again at the Salone dell'automobile di Torino in 1963. Employing all but the Maserati 3500's coachwork, it could reach 137 mph (220 km/h) and 0–60 mph in 8.5 seconds on 185x15 Pirelli Cinturato tyres. A Borg-Warner automatic transmission was available, a first for Italian automobiles. When leaving the factory it originally fitted Pirelli Cinturato 205VR15 tyres (CN72). A total of 348 Series I Sebrings were built between 1962 and 1965. The engine was updated in 1963, gaining 15PS for a total of 235 PS (173 kW). The 3700 engine first appeared in 1964, although only a handful of Series I cars were thus equipped.
In 1965, the modified Series II (Tipo AM 101/10) was introduced. It had lightly redesigned headlamps, modernized bumpers, new turn signals in front, and new side grilles replacing the lower extraction vents used hitherto. It took minor design cues from the contemporary Quattroporte. At the rear, aside from the squared off bumpers, the taillights were now mounted horizontally rather than vertically and the bootlid opening was narrowed somewhat. The Series II rode on larger 205x15 Pirelli Cinturatos. A run of 245 units was made from 1964 until 1968. Along with the 3500 engine (although only two of these were built, both in 1965) the 3700 with a lengthened stroke enlarging its engine to 3,694 cc (245 cubic inches) and the even larger 4000 were added.
The 4000 GTiS has a 4,012 cc engine producing 255 PS (188 kW) at 5,200 rpm. It remained in production until 1968, when financial constraints forced Maserati to drop its older models from production. No major updates took place over the last three years of production, except for a slight power gain for the 4000, now up to 265 PS (195 kW). 348 units of Sebring 3.5 and 245 of 3.7 and 4.0 (combined) were made, for a total of 593 units from 1962 to 1969.
Jeremy Clarkson named the Sebring as #77 on his Top 100 Cars list.
- 1. Tabucchi, Maurizio (2003). Maserati: The Grand Prix, Sports and GT cars model by model, 1926-2003. Milano: Giorgio Nada Editore s.r.l. p. 249. ISBN 8879112600.
- 2. ^ Jump up to:a b Tabucchi, p. 248