TopGear.com27 September 2012

Classified ad of the week: Maserati Merak

A cheaper, worse alternative to the MC Stradale Grancabrio…

Maserati Merak

Seeing the name Maserati this week reminded us of JC's slightly rubbish £7000 supercar, so we thought it was about time we rummaged through the internet to find one for sale. And even though our chances of finding one of the 17 left on UK roads were slimmer than a biker's highway code, we managed it...

This right-hand-drive Merak looks a little better than his, mind. Beamed in from the handlebar moustache dimension, this is the ultimate rare-groove seventies supercar. By 1975 - and once Maser' had shaken off the shackles of Citroen ownership - the old 190bhp Merak had been a given a boot up the trumpet with a hopped-up 220bhp 3.0-litre V6. They'd also added lightness and fitted an exciting new badge on the back.

And this one's the top of the tree. The Merak of Meraks. The state-of-the-seventies SS version. It is lighter than its predecessor by 20kg (roughly one third of a Hammond). It is black and cream. It has a badge with lightning through it. It looks like it should be driven by Peter Stringfellow. We like it.

The vendor promises that it's seen a constant service program, boasting 16 stamps in the original service book. It's only done 56000 miles too, and there are just four previous owners on the log book.

Like Jeremy's one, this has been subject to a full engine overhaul - piston rings, bearings, timing chains, clutch, the lot - and it's been converted to run on modern fuel. Hopefully it'll make more than 80bhp, which is all Jeremy's managed on the rollers...

How many pounds for such a fine wedge of Italiana? £24,000. Obviously, there's a chance it'll break constantly and at the most inconvenient times, but it's still less than an entry-level BMW 3-Series.

Now click here for the advert. And if you buy it, please contact editor@topgear.com and tell us. We may laugh.

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