Czech Republic Find: 1976 Maserati Merak

Maseratis of the modern day are a great disappointment compared to their elder statesmen. This 1976 Maserati Merak is a stunning alternative to a Ferrari 308 of the same era, but you’ll have to be handy with self-assembly and know a good shipping merchant. The project-grade Merak seen here on eBay is located in the Czech Republic and said to be a stalled project with its major components included. The Buy-It-Now is $27,500.

Without the Merak’s distinctive buttresses along either side of the rear half of the car, this almost looks like a supercar ute from down under. The body shows evidence of prior prep and paintwork, but looks straight; no word if the primered sections reflect rust repair or prior accident damage. The rear bumper is missing along with the front, but it may be included within the multiple piles of spare parts. The good news is, this is a Euro-spec car so it should have the slim chrome bumpers.

Why does that matter? The US cars had ugly rubber overriders stuck to the front and rear. Other clues include the speedometer in KMH. You might assume that given the car’s location, of course it would be Euro-spec – but we’ve seen enough domestic market projects end up overseas that nothing is ever for certain. The interior presents very well for a car that’s been disassembled for restoration, and the uncracked dash is nice to see. Seats appear original and largely undamaged as well, but here’s the big question: what about the motor?

Well, it’s included, just not in the car. The Merak shared its 3.0 V6 with the Citroen SM, effectively turned 180 degrees for installation it the Maserati. While not abundant, there are seemingly more than a few SMs used as parts cars hanging around so replacement components shouldn’t be impossible to find. Still, we’d want to know more about what level of servicing the mid-ship mounted motor had received before bolting it into the Merak seen here. Or, would you swap in a different powerplant altogether?

Comments

  1. John T

    Hagerty lists the price for a #3 car at less than $30K for a base model (which this is judging by the front end and the engine). Conspicuously absent are any photos of the floors under the rear seats (where they all rust). Caveat emptor

  2. Mark

    What’s that part on motor RIGHT SIDE , that looks like a brake rotor?

    • John T

      It is a brake rotor. The Merak adopted the Citroen SM inboard brakes, at least until DeTomasso took over and chucked anything that had to do with Citroen

  3. John T

    Correction $27K for a #4 (fair condition) which this clearly isn’t

  4. Klharper

    I owned a Merak but mine is a later model and it was a SS. I paid 19.5 for it about 10 years ago and it is a condition 3 car. Today that car is probably worth about 70k.
    If it was a base model as this car is it would be worth closer to 40k.
    Maserati parts prices will make you cry and you could not get this car to the level of a 40k car if it was given to you for free.
    I liked the Merak and it was a good car but not a great car, in reality both a Ferrari 308 GT4 and even a Lotus Espirit were better cars and better buys

  5. Larry B.

    Except for the very last injected models, the SM had a 2.7L version of the C114 engine. The Merak always had the 3.0L except for some Italian market tax 2L specials. All Meraks had the Citroen transmission, in spite of some statements to the contrary.

    • John T

      Actually, the injected SMs all were 2.7L. USA models for 1973 model year got the 3.0L engine in both 5-speed and automatic. 1973 model year European market cars also got the 3.0L engine, but only in the automatic version and only with carburetors. The 5-speed Euro models retained the 2.7L engine (either injected or carburetors) throughout production.

  6. Adam T45 Staff

    Without the rear buttresses, from the rear the Merak has a touch of the Lancia Stratos about it. I will always remember the episode of UK Top Gear where Jeremy Clarkson bought a Merak. Now there was an object lesson in how to NOT buy a car!

  7. Keith

    Was the pic of this car be for or after the flood ?

  8. Mike

    Wonder if I can still source US spec bumpers for this? Nice to have a picnic table to set lunch on at car shows.

    https://i2.wp.com/www.classicitaliancarsforsale.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/57-1.jpg?resize=474%2C355

    • redwagon

      wow. those are ugly.

    • david nieuwenhuis

      Hi Mike, I have a few pairs of US bumpers for Khamsins lying around. I changed them for Euro spec. These are just as ugly, big and heavy so, get ready for them..

  9. minicoopermk1

    What could possibly go wrong when importing an Italian sports car from the Czech Republic, under an Austrian title?

  10. drake

    This guy’s on DRUGS!

  11. Edward

    Loonies exist in many other places besides the US, as can be seen in this notice! Gotta laugh at the seller’s dreamer price, even if I lived within towing distance of this car. What % of Chech buyers could afford to buy/own it?

  12. Beatnik Bedouin

    My first thought when seeing the post above was, ‘To je skoda…’, which means ‘It’s a pity in Czech (I lived there for a year and picked up a bit of the language).

    Don’t be surprised by an Italian car with an Austrian title being sold by a Czech. It’s quite common for cars to cross borders in the EU and be flipped at a profit – well, that’s the dream, anyway.

    I’ve seen Austrian scooters, (West) German cars and Italian motorcycles sold on Polish and Czech on-line auction sites. As a SoCal expat buddy of mine, who lives in Europe, says, “These guys are waiting for a rich western or northern European to turn up at their doorstep with wads of cash.”

    • ACZ

      Ja vim

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