Sold for $130,750 at 2009 Bonhams - Quail Lodge Resort and Golf Club.
Between 1952 through 1957, Maserati won seven World Championships in racing and dominated the Formula One scene. After this, their emphasis changed to road cars of the Gran Turismo class when the 3500GT was introduced at the 1957 Geneva show. The car, available in either coupe or convertible style, was powered by a 220 horsepower, hemi-head DOHC six-cylinder engine.
Maserati commissioned Pietro Frua to design a hatchback coupe as a successor to the 3500GT. The Mistral, the first of the 'wind Maseratis' and the last of the straight sixes, was first shown at the Salone dell'automobile di Torino
in November 1963. The 3485cc unit from the 3500GT was fitted with a Lucas fuel-injection system and mated to a ZF five-sped transmission and placed into this new GT car. The displacement would later rise to 3,695 and finally to 4014cc.
This Mistral is the last Spyder built in 1970. It is a right-hand drive model with English-unit instrumentation by Lucas and Smiths. The odometer reads just 62,000 miles since new and it is a mostly original car.
The total Mistral production through 1970 reached 950 cars with just 120 of them being Spyders.
In 2009, this car was offered for sale by Bonhams at the Exceptional Motorcars and Automobilia at the Quail Lodge in Carmel, CA. The lot was sold for the sum of $130,750 inclusive of Buyer's Premium.
The Mistral was produced from 1963 through 1970. During its production lifespan, 120 spyders and 830 coupes were produced. The design had been penned by the Italian stylist Pietro Frua, arguably one of his greatest automotive designs. The French had a name for a strong, cold wind in their southern region, it was Mistral. Maserati adopted the name because it embodied the essence of the wind - speed. The original name for the vehicle had been Due Posti.
In 1963, Maserati introduced the Mistral at Auto Shows and a year later the production version was ready. Initially, the vehicle was to be outfitted with a 3.5-liter power-plant, however, the production version received a 3.7-liter engine. It was a derivative of the engine used in Maserati's motorsport. The cylinder head had hemispherical combustion champers, Lucas indirect fuel injection, and chain-driven camshafts. Mounted under the gently sloping hood, the 245 horsepower six-cylinder engine powered the rear wheels and could propel the vehicle from zero to sixty in 7 seconds.
The short wheelbase provided room for two passengers. A square section welded together had replaced the classic elliptic tubular frame in an effort to reduce the overall weight. A 4.0-liter engine now lurked under the hood, raising the overall horsepower rating by ten and giving the Mistral a top speed of just under 160 mph.
The Mistral was outfitted with a ZF 5-speed gearbox, disc brakes on all four corners, and the traditional Borrani wire wheels. The later models had light-alloy wheels. The interior was plush, elegant, and inviting with rich leather bucket seats. A hardtop could be purchased as optional equipment for the Spyder version, making it more versatile.
In production for seven years and with nearly 1000 examples created, this is truly a magnificent automobile. Its beautiful curves, wrap-around chrome bumper, and Maserati's marriage of racing and luxury made this a suitable choice for all types of automobile enthusiasts.By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2006