Two prototypes for a sleek new four-seat Maserati were shown at the 1968 Turin Auto Show, one each from Carrozzerie Vignale and Ghia who both had history with Maserati. The Vignale prototype was selected and shown in production form as the Maserati Indy Vignale Coupe at the Geneva Auto Show in 1969. Like some previous Maseratis, the name was chosen to celebrate the marque’s great racing history – in this case, the Maserati 8C TF’s dominating victories at the Indianapolis 500 in 1939-1940.
The Maserati Indy was designed as a full four-place luxury grand touring car in spite of the sleek two-door coupe profile. The heart of the design was a front-mounted all-alloy dohc 4.2-liter V-8 engine fed by four Weber carburetors and mated to a 5-speed ZF gearbox (or 3-speed automatic), mounted in a 102.4-inch wheelbase. A 4.7-liter V-8 was first offered in mid-1970, and a 315-320 hp 4.9-liter V-8 in 1973 with a claimed 170 mph top speed only slightly less than the two-place Ghibli. The luxurious leather interior of the Indy provided ample room to travel long distances in comfort with an almost horizontal lift-up hatch giving easy access to 18 cu. ft. of luggage space.
This exceptional European-spec Maserati Indy Vignale Coupe was completed on October 8, 1970 and originated as a 4.7-liter, with Girling four-wheel disc brakes and the additional bright rocker panel trim that identifies the larger 4.7-liter engine. At some point in the car’s history, an upgrade was completed to an authentic and correct 4.9-liter engine from a later Indy.
Never needing a full restoration, this car has been taken care of by a passionate collector, who worked hard to keep it well sorted, correctly maintained and attractive. Presented in its original and very attractive color scheme of Azzurro Hyperion light metallic blue with black leather, the paint quality is very good, with straight panels and nice chrome throughout. The interior is beautiful and correct, including the black leather covering the seats, door panels and console, and the original headliner and early Indy ‘twin binnacle’ style dashboard. The drilled three-spoke aluminum steering wheel with wood rim and a wood gearshift knob are equally well preserved. The full complement of gauges includes a km/h speedometer. The engine compartment is clean and nicely detailed, and the car runs and performs great. Original and correct Borrani alloy wheels are mounted with Pirelli tires.
A total of only 1,104 Maserati Indy Coupes were produced between 1969 and 1975, with just 300 of those originally equipped with the big 4.9-liter engine and updates. This is simply a fabulous Maserati that is begging to be let loose on a road trip. It is well sorted and ready for touring and events, but has been prepared to a level that makes it suitable for the occasional show as well.
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