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Interview – 100 years of Maserati – Glen Sealey


Some of the more exotic car makers did not start building road cars till relatively late in the car cycle.

Enzo Ferrari started Scuderia Ferrari in 1929 to produce racing cars but did not start making road-legal cars till 1947.

Lamborghini was founded in 1963.

One of the longest names in car manufacturing is Maserati which celebrates its centenary this year.

They too started with race cars.

So what’s the history of this proud Italian car company which will celebrate 100 years in December?

Let’s ask the man who must have one of the great jobs in the motoring industry, Glen Sealey, General Manager Maserati Australia and New Zealand.

 

  • A number of brothers started the company to produce racing cars
  • Trident – three pronged spear – based on a statue in Bologna
  • In the Indianapolis 500 had back-to-back wins in 1939 and 1940 in a Maserati 8CTF , the only Italian manufacturer ever to do so.
  • The famous Argentinian driver Juan-Manuel Fangio raced for Maserati for a number of years in the 1950s, producing a number of stunning victories including winning the world championship in 1957 in the Maserati 250F.
  • 60s and 70s were a time of change but not a time of manufacturing efficiency – hard to keep a niche market car going
  • In 1968, Maserati was taken over by the French car manufacturer, Citroën.  Maserati changed a great deal.  New models were launched, and built in much greater numbers than before. Citroën borrowed Maserati expertise and engines for the Citroën SM and other vehicles, and Maseratis also incorporated Citroën technology, particularly in hydraulics.
  • Hit by the Global Financial Crisis
  • Ferrari still builds your engines
  • Last year sold 134 cars in Australia.  DOesn’t sound much but is more than Bentley, Ferrari, or Lamborghini or Foton

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