2003 Maserati Spyder Cambiocorsa

The Maserati Coupe and Spyder were produced from 2001 to 2007 when they were replaced by the GranTurismo. These grand touring automobiles offered four seats for the coupes and two seats for the roadster version. The coupe and spyder, both commonly referred to as the 4200GT, were based on the 3200 GT which was sold in Europe, but not in the United States. The name '4200' was a representation of its 4.2 Liter engine size.

Maserati tasked the vehicle's design for the Coupe and Spyder to Giorgetto Giugiaro of ItalDesign. Giugiaro had also designed the Maserati Ghibli. The interior design was handled by Enrico Furnia and the cars were built at the Viale Ciro Menotti plant in Modena, Italy.

Maserati unveiled the Spyder at the 2001 Frankfurt Auto Show. The coupe made its introduction at the 2002 Detroit Auto Show. Sales in the United States began in March of 2002 for the Spyder, followed by the Coupe going on sale in May.

Near the close of 2004, the Coupe and Spyder was given a slight facelift. In the front was a slightly larger grille with its lower edge pulled slightly lower into the lip of the front bumper. The new grille was given horizontal bars and there was a new air outlet featured on the lower rearmost sides.

Both the Coupe and Spyder had side driver and passenger airbags as well as seat belt pre-tensioners. riving stability is provided by Maserati Stability Program (MSP) which became standard on the 2004 models and controls the engine and brakes to help the driver control the vehicle in extreme driving situations. At all four corners were high-performance Brembo brakes with light-alloy four-piston calipers and cross-drilled ventilated discs.

The 4244cc engine developed 385 horsepower and offered 332 lb-ft of torque. The manual transmission was a six-speed that was available either as a GT (manual stick shift) or CC (Cambiocorsa) using paddle shifters. The GT version was given a foot-operated clutch, whereas the Cambiocorsa (Italian for 'race change') had a electrohydraulic manual transmission that uses a Formula One-type gearbox with hydraulic operation and electronic management operated by F1-style paddles behind the steering wheel, similar to the system used in Ferrari vehicles. This system allowed the driver to switch between Normal and Sport modes.

In 2004, at the Geneva Motor Show, Maserati introduced the GranSport version. It had special 19-inch wheels, a Skyhook active suspension with a 0.4 inch lower ride height, the Cambiocorsa transmission, aerodynamic body cladding, and a chrome mesh grille. The exhaust system was tuned to make a deeper, 'throatier' sound on start-up. The engine still displaced 4244cc but was developed to produce 395 horsepower.

The Maserati Trofeo was the racing version. Power was from the stock engine but uprated to 414 horsepower due to a revised engine mapping and a modified free-flowing exhaust that uses a baffle-free muffler. The vehicle weight was reduced and many non-essential elements were removed. There was no soundproofing, air conditioning, and no leather seating.
A Trofeo racing series was organized for the Maserati enthusiasts, with a per-race rental charge of about $20,000.

By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2012

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