V6 Conversion: 1960 Maserati 3500 GT

1960-Maserati-3500gt

The 3500GT was the car that kept Maserati afloat in the 60s and helped establish its reputation as a manufacturer of fine gran tourers. Up until that point Maser had focused on their racing efforts, but the coffers needed filling so they used the knowledge they had gained at the track to build a car for the road. You wouldn’t guess it by looking at this project car, but the 3500GT was an outstanding automobile. This 1960 example is located in Bethel, Connecticut and is in need of a full restoration. Bidding is over $23k here on eBay, but these are six figure cars when restored. Thanks goes to Mark D. for the tip!

1960-Maserati-3500gt-engine

Getting this Maserati back to six figure condition is going to be quite an undertaking. The exterior may look decent, but there is some major corrosion hiding underneath that aluminum body. Some repairs will also need to be made to the floors because a previous owner chopped them up to perform a V6 conversion. The Maser inline-six is back in place, but we don’t know if it’s the original. This engine was good for about 220 horsepower when new and was mated to a four-speed gearbox.

1960-Maserati-3500gt-interior

The restoration is going to be costly and time consuming, but not impossible. Here’s one that Healey Works brought back to life. The prospect of picking up a project like this on the cheap is tempting, but we had better leave this one to the professionals… Then again, you could always drop the V6 back in there and drive it.

Like This? Get Our Daily Email!

Comments

  1. jim

    a great find thats going to take a lot of work. bidding show there is a lot of interest. i wonder what is the story on the porsche and tvr in the background. not sure what the dark car on the right side in the background of top photo is.

  2. Dolphin Dolphin Member

    Wonderful cars……when cared for and running right, with a terrific mellow exhaust note from the twin-plug six. But these got to be $1500 – $5K cars years ago, depending on how much or how little care they received. Now a car like this can get to 6 figures, but only if its had a 6 figure restoration first.

    Lots of rust to fix, lots of fabrication for the chassis, floors, and doors, and probably some replacement of thin areas on the aluminum body. Another needs-everything car, unfortunately. It will cost far more to restore than it will bring on the market, so the options come down to store it until the fully-restored price appreciates enough to justify the cost of restoration, or part it out now, which will probably let the buyer make a few bucks but will likely be the kiss of death for this chassis.

    Someone has started on the engine (nice clean Webers), but the seller doesn’t say whether the engine turns over. It’s missing the water pump, raising the question whether it overheated and maybe seized or scored the cylinder walls.

    As usual, better to scrape together the $75K for a decent driver than to take on a major project like this.

  3. Peter

    Its worth half that.

    There are to many parts missing. PASS

  4. Horse Radish

    .I am so sorry, BUT I wouldn’t finance this ‘high end flipper’s lifestyle.
    .
    Always the same m.o.
    Cars that need restoration, bought in boxes or by the bucket, mostly basket cases sold/flipped for prices of a decent original….
    .
    Really too bad for the cars. Because of that fact they will probably not get restored as the buyers are already bled dry buying the ‘car’.
    . Got to say this though:
    he has an eye for the rare and desirable cars and knows which ones people will gladly bleed and bleed and bleed for.
    .
    I personally don’t see the benefit of such enterprise neither for the car or the old-car-scene.

    • John Allison

      THE FLIPPERS ARE RUINING A GREAT HOBBY FOR US CAR BUFFS!!

      • Horse Radish

        YES !, that’s what I was trying to say.
        I don’t mind the guys that take on a car, invest time and effort, but to get these projects like this one that need a lot of care, money and patience and to just turn it around for a profit ??
        That makes these guys in my eyes a lowly lifeform ?
        .
        If you want to be a dealer, open up a lot and sell Camrys and Toyotas, for Pete’s sake !

  5. junkman Member

    Many thoughts come to mind when I see something like this, above all RUST is a four letter word. You guys have nailed it, pass.

  6. paul

    All-reightey- then,….. next!

  7. BillR

    “… bottom of driver’s door has no rust”………..hmmmmmm

    • Horse Radish

      ….so we got ourselves a $23000+ door with a lot of brown flakes dangling along ?

  8. John Allison

    Did they store the back bumper on their beach front patio???

  9. Chris A.

    The location in Bethel Connecticut might have a lot to do with the severe rust. Winter road salt really looks like it ate into this car. Besides all the metal work, finding all the bits and pieces will take time. You won’t find a 12 point distributor cap or an air cleaner assembly down at the local parts store. This needs someone with time, skills and very deep pockets or it is just spares. Back in the day, a Maserati 3500 GT wasn’t terribly expensive, but any repairs were and still are. Maserati further developed the 3500 which resulted in the 3500GTi with Lucas fuel injection, disc brakes and a 5 speed transmission, a more desirable car. At the end of the model run, I thought of the 3500’s as sort of an Italian Jaguar E-Type.

    • paul

      Chris A I agree with all your points except the last, think of these more like an Italian Aston Martin in that era an early E Type would have run circles around this car.

  10. Chris A.

    Paul, good comment. The Aston Martin DB4GT is a more accurate comparison as both the Maserati and the Aston were designed and built in the late fifties and early sixties with coachbuilt bodies. Both of them had separate frames and bodies and no IRS. The E-Type Jag was a whole different concept with it’s monocoque chassis/body and the IRS. What all three had in common were classic DOHC in line 6 cylinder engines. The too late to the game Aston Martin GP car and the Maserati 250 F had well developed 6 cylinder DOHC race engines, as did add the Le Mans winning C and D 6 cylinder Jag race cars. Detuned, all three engines were developed and used as production engines for years.

  11. Clay Bryant

    Bidding at 43k? At least it will take one “fat-pocketed” out of circulation and teach him a lesson.I’d hate to see the parts bill before the restoration.

  12. paul

    Wow 43k he so far under water he was spotted in China but the China in the other galaxy.

  13. Peter

    When is reality, reality?

    I have seen this time and time again in the chase for classics. Its all about the perceived value of a commodity, no different to the price of oil. If I feel good today the price will go up and as a natural progression that I will require consumables such as car parts, around it.

    Does this mean that if I buy all the Maserati biturbo range for sub50k plus will they go up in value? The answers is yes! Because like sheep the price will go up from the initial sub<10k and the journalist will now say that it was a special model in its history as the brand will win. By this time many of the sub sub<10 biturbos are recycled metal and out of circulation.

    Its a numbers game, as we all know and if you are in the flipping business all well and good because the 42 Biturbos I bout have increased by 300%

    • paul

      Well not exactly, if you bought all the Yugo’s left on the face of the earth if any would someone give you a million for the lot since you own all of them? As for the Bi Turbo’s they would be a tough sell since not many people want them. If this was a Ferrari 275 GTB it would be grabbed at three times the price that this one will sell for.

  14. Chris A.

    In 1983 I had an opportunity to buy one of these in much better condition but not running. The price was $1,500 but i was aware that finding and paying for parts, labor, etc. would probably be another 10K. But If I had bought it, stashed it as is in good storage for 30 years and sold it for $43,000 my return would have been an average of 92% per year. Now lets see, buy this one for $43,000 average 92% per year hold for 30 years and it will be worth $1,186,800. What a deal!

  15. Peter

    Yugo’s retailed for $3990 when the were new. I cant find a concourse Yugo not to mention the 55 high performance motor anywhere. So I guess they are worth more than we think.
    Yugo’s a bad example as its mass produced and Maserati Biturbo’s are limited.
    Whats the price of Biturbo’s. Onwards and upwards!!

  16. Dolphin Dolphin Member

    Bid to $43K but did not meet the reserve.

    I don’t know who’s the biggest dreamer:
    the guy who bid this to $43K, or the seller who refused it.

    • Horse Radish

      I would just say greed won over stupidity.
      That simple.

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks. Don't post your car for sale in the comments. Click here to get it featured on the homepage instead.

*

Notify me of new comments via email. Or subscribe without commenting.