Maserati 5000 GT
|Production||1959–1965 31 units|
|Body style||2-door coupé|
Maserati 5000GT Built: Modena, Italy, from 1959-1965
Before Maserati produced their first true 'production' road car, the 3500GT, they had abandoned motor racing, and this left them with a small but valuable stock of the ultra-powerful V8 engines. The 5000GT Coupes, of which only 32 examples were built in five years, were effectively 3500GT rolling chassis, with the massive V8 engine installed, and with luxurious handbuilt 2 + 2 bodies. All the 32 production cars appear to have been coupes, though a single convertible was reputedly shown at the Turin Show in 1961. The first three cars used out-and-out racing engines, including gear-driven camshafts, while the rest used the more refined version being developed for later production car use, and featured fuel-injection by Lucas. 20 of the cars were bodied by Allemano, but all looked striking, and were undoubtedly rich men's toys.
The first customer was the Shah of Iran, and another was Briggs Cunningham. The 5000GT, however, was really only an indulgence by Maserati, involving them in little more than re-engining the 3500GT frame and suspensions, and was built by hand to keep their richest clients happy.
In 1960 the engine got some modifications: received a displacement of 4940cc with a bigger stroke and a smaller bore and were fuel injected; in the new configuration engine developed 340 bhp. After the first body by Touring, the main body partner since 1960 became Carrozzeria Allemano which did 21 of the cars, designed by Giovanni Michelotti. Other builders were Pietro Frua (2), Carrozzeria Monterosa (2), Pininfarina (1), Ghia (Sergio Sartorelli) (1), Michelotti (1) and Carrozzeria Touring (2 more).
Engine and transmission: Eight-cylinders, in 90-degree vee-formation, with twin- overhead-camshaft cylinder heads and fuel-injection. Bore, stroke and capacity 98.5 X 81mm., 4935cc. Maximum power 330bhp at 5700rpm.; maximum torque 3301b.ft. at 3500rpm. Four-speed manual gearbox in unit with engine. Hypoid bevel
Chassis: Front engine, rear drive. Separate tubular steel chassis frame. Independent fronlt suspeension by coil springs, wishbones and anti-roll bar. Recirculating ball steering. Rear suspension of live axle by half-elliptic leaf springs, with anti-roll bar and torque arms. Front wheel disc brakes, and rear drums.
Bodywork: Separate coachbuilt bodyshells in variety of two-door styles, mainly by Allemano (but also by Touring, Ghia, Frua, etc), in notchback coupe 2+2 layouts; steel and/or light-alloy depending on style chosen. Typical dimensions: length 15ft. line; width 5ft. 7in.; height 4ft. 4in. Unladen weight 44001b.
Performance: (Typical) Maximum speed up to 170mph. 0-60mph 6.5sec. Standing 1/4 -mile 14.0sec.