1977 Maserati Merak SS
Extremely rare and desirable SS variant of the Merak, only 312 made
Only 12,000 documented miles
100% original paint and interior
A desirable late “Bora dashboard” Merak SS with conventional hydraulic brakes
One family owned since 1979, a California car its entire life
Original owner was Morris Albert, composer and singer of the ‘one hit wonder’ song “Feelings”
Fully mechanically serviced and sorted
Original books, tools, jack, all registration receipts and records
A “best in the world” car, virtually impossible to find another like this
In 1968, Citroen took over Maserati, primarily so that the French firm could leverage Maserati’s engine building talents to manufacture a new high performance engine for the upcoming flagship Citroen SM. Maserati created an all-new V6 engine, initially displacing 2.7 liters, which used to great success in the SM. The resources provided by Citroen allowed Maserati to also develop new models, including the first mid-engine Maserati, the Bora, designed by Giugiaro at his new design firm, Italdesign, and powered by an evolution of the Maserati V8 engine.
However, Citroen also wanted to take advantage of their investment in the SM V6 engine, and Maserati wanted to have a model to compete against the coming-into-fashion 2+2 mid-engine cars by Ferrari and Lamborghini. Maserati increased the displacement of the engine to 3.0 liters, topped it with three Weber carburetors, and, using the mid-engine Bora as a base design, and taking advantage of the compactness of the V6 engine, added two (quite small) back seats. The large and heavy glass-enclosed engine compartment of the Bora was replaced by a flat panel and, in a genius design stroke by Giugiaro, two flying buttresses connecting the roof and the rear of the car.
Introduced in 1972, the Maserati Merak initially contained Citroen hydropneumatic systems controlling the brakes and the headlights, and the dashboard was taken straight out of the SM. In 1976, the lighter and more powerful Merak SS was introduced, with 220 hp thanks to larger carburetors and a higher compression ratio. In the US market, the SS traded its Citroen hydropneumatics for more conventional hydraulics, further reducing weight and increasing reliability. Ultimately, the later SS cars moved even closer to the Bora design, especially in the interior where the dash was virtually identical to the Bora.
This particular 1977 Maserati Merak SS is one of the only 312 late SS cars with the Bora dashboard and the conventional hydraulics. Purchased new in 1978 by Morris Albert, the composer and singer of the 70s hit “Feelings”, it was traded back to the dealership in 1979, and purchased by its next owner, who would keep the car for the next 37 years in southern California before it was passed to his nephew in 2016. Virtually unheard of for a Merak, it has never been cosmetically restored, and wears its completely original paint over its 100% original interior.
This Merak has only traveled 12,000 miles since new, and registration records going back to when the car was purchased document this mileage. In 2017, the previous owner commissioned a complete engine rebuild by Bobileff in San Diego, due to one of the sodium-filled exhaust valves failing. I have personally had all of the other systems of the car sorted out during my ownership over the past year, including re-tuning the carburetors, distributor rebuild, brake system rebuild, A/C system refurbishment, and new Michelin XWX tires installed on all four wheels.
I have personally driven this Merak SS almost 1,000 miles over the past year, including participation in a classic car rally in the Texas hill country, and I have thoroughly enjoyed every mile. The car is completely sorted and needs absolutely nothing, something rarely said about other Meraks. All of the accessories are present: the original books, toolkit, jack, and spare wheel, along with the history of the car since new. This is truly an unrepeatable “best in the world” car, a time capsule, collector and investor grade in every respect, and it would be virtually impossible to find another Merak such as this one. I look forward to speaking with you about this incredible Merak SS; please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 832-617-0494.