Eric’s Gas Station Sighting

maserati merak

It never ceases to amaze us some of the cars that people will leave parked in the elements to just decay. We have even heard tales of owners who hate their car, but would rather leave it parked than let it go to a good home. While Eric G was getting his motorcycle inspected at a local gas station, he spotted this Maserati Merak. When he asked the gas station owner about it their response was, “it’s a piece of junk”. Over the past couple years, Eric has kept an eye on it and every so often the owner moves it around the station or into their garage, but this past winter they left it out in the snow. It goes to show, what might be an engineering master piece to one person is a piece of junk to someone else. It’s just too bad that they would rather leave it in the snow than let someone else have it. Let’s just hope they decide to part ways with their “piece of junk” sooner, rather than later! Our thanks to Eric for sharing his find with us and we hope he will keep us posted if the owner decides to part ways with it!


  1. paul

    Why yes it is, now if somebody would remove the junk hanging off the bottom of this car, then it wouldn’t be such a piece of junk.

  2. Steve

    It just goes to show you that some people have more money than brains!!! Like Ron White always says you can’t fix stupid!!

  3. pbryantr

    I love the dish on the rear wheels!

  4. Dolphin Member

    The Merak is a great ’70s design based on the mighty Bora, but some people just have to improve on something great by adding junk, as Paul said. This car never came with the flares, hood scoop, those ground effects aero things, and whatever that battering ram is on the front. Anyone can do anything with a car they own that’s within the law, but this is the kind of car that the words ‘boy racer’ were invented for.

    I guess you could say the same about that MG TC with the Ford V8 60 from the other day, but if the story is true that was a rally car, then you have to accept that race/rally cars have to be modified if they’re going to do their job. There’s a word we used to use for that kind of modification: ‘sanitary’. It was done right, for a particular performance purpose. You couldn’t use that word with this poor Merak.

  5. Plasticman

    Truth is it’s likely it IS a load of junk! After years stood outside and the dubious build quality of Maserati back then; it would certainly require a small fortune spent.

  6. Tim H

    I wonder why we need to have opinions about what other people do with their stuff? When people think their stuff, that I like is junk, that’s usually good news for me.

    • Dolphin Member

      I know what you’re saying, and it’s usually true, BUT…..

      My rust-free, outbuilding-find 240Z has turned into a minor resto nightmare. To prepare for a “chrome delete” the PO had all the chrome and SS etched with acid to prep for the black epoxy paint. It took off almost all the chrome and also added thousands of little pits. All the chrome and SS is now junk, and I am now trying to find replacements.

      My guess is it’s going to be a similar story with this Merak once someone tries to remove those flares and some of the other stuff. It will probably end up being pretty expensive to do that because the body will likely need work, plus a repaint. At least buyers know what they’re getting into with the Merak, but sometimes modifications bring problems that you only find out about once you get into the resto. If you know what’s going to be required you can plan and pitch your purchase offer accordingly.

      And as Chris has said, this *mid-engine* car has had a ‘hood’ scoop added to the…trunk! The stupidity is sometimes staggering.

      • Don Andreina

        Dolphin, would there be any NOS from the ‘relaunch’ a few years ago?

      • paul

        Yeah the guy was trying to get his golf bag to fit in the trunk.

    • Don Andreina

      You’re sort of right; each to their own. But when you’re going to put it out there like this

    • Dolphin Member

      Not that I’m aware of. I’ve never seen another Merak that looks like this one, and I don’t think Tomaso did anything very noticeable to the Merak body after he bought Maserati. He changed the Citroen hydraulics and some mechanical things and I believe that was it.

      I think the body parts that were added to the car are probably aftermarket.

  7. rolymo

    In a lot of cases in the USA the owner does not have the technical ability to sort out the problems ,so brands the vehicle “junk” to cover up their own ineptitude, also filling stations often get lumbered with “cast-off” broken cars that they don’t own so cannot sell on but keep them on show to promote forecourt traffic

  8. Chris

    I wonder what that supposed scoop in front of the rear wheel is for? Cools the tire maybe?
    Actually the materials and quality of the Meraks and Boras was quite good, (apart from 1st year teething problems) it is more a case of poor maintenance and non mechanically sympathetic owners. …they weren’t made to do burn outs and 1/4 mile or ham fisted driving runs.

  9. rolymo

    I sold a very unusual automobile to a filling station owner 11years ago, he drove it until it stopped from lack of service. It still sits on his forecourt in Florida on a main tourist route and is definately not for sale . Even dead it continues to pull in business every day 24/7.

    • Reuben Adkins

      And what vehicle would that be? Pictures?

      • rolymo

        Reply to Reuben Adkins :- A Belaro GT. I would post photos if I knew how ? On several occasions I have wanted to respond with a picture but there is no indication of how to do it on this site. (I have 5800 pic’s in my memory)

  10. Alan

    Funny, when I first looked at the photo, prior to reading the description, I thought: “Eh, some sort of Fiero conversion.” Oops! A real Maserati, eh? My bad….

  11. Daymo

    But why on earth does it wear Rover SD1 Vitesse wheels? Guess the originals rusted away!

    • rolymo

      Sorry not Rover SD1 Vitesse wheels :- with a 4 bolt pattern

  12. Chris

    Daymo Alloys ‘m don’t rust away. Meraks have a hard to find bolt pattern maybe in common with Vitesse wheels? I believe they are 4 X 130 mm. Do Vitesse wheels come in 16″ or 17″ sizes? That would open up the available wheels for Meraks to get a more modern tire on them.

  13. Chris

    I wonder what the lump on the hood, (bonnet) is for? Hood Scoop? …It is a mid engine.

  14. rancho bella

    Just goes to prove what I say all the time, “99.9% of the population have no taste”

  15. Chip Lamb

    Gas station owner likely correct, as it’s a Merak and not an SS, all the external nonsense aside it’s an anemic V6 and is saddled with Citroen hydraulics. Parts beast at best.

  16. Tom Greenacres

    This junked up Merak reminds me of so many Panteras, with their plastic goober add ons obscuring a beautiful and simple design.

  17. jake

    Back in the 90’s whenever I’d go to my brothers place in Vernon Hills, IL I would always see a Maserati Bora sitting at a repair shop!!! Winter, spring and summer didn’t matter and then one year it was gone!!! Always hoped someone restored it!

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