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Maserati

Maserati

Italy Italy (1914 - present)
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History

At the turn from the 19th to the 20th century, the Maserati family integrated 6 brothers that were all somehow involved in automobile engineering and design: Alfieri, Bindo, Carlo, Ettore, Ernesto and Mario Maserati. They were initially in charge for the production of racing vehicles for the DiattoDiattoDiattoItaly, 1904 > 19282 models
10 photos
brand but when Diatto was suspended from racing, in 1926, the brothers decided to create their first Maserati car. Subsequently they formed the Maserati trademark. In that same year, Alfieri Maserati drove one of their cars to victory in the Targa Florio and the company officially started producing racing cars.

Maserati 26B, 1927

Maserati 26B, 1927

© photo courtesy of: Maserati

Despite Alfieri’s death in 1932, the brothers carried on with the car company, producing cars and winning competitions. However, in 1937, they eventually gave in to the Orsi family and sold them their shares from the Maserati company. The Maserati brothers got to stay in the company for another 10 years by working on engineering job positions. With the Orsi purchase, the firm’s headquarters were transferred to its current place, Modena, Italy.

When World War II began, the Italian automaker set aside the car production in order to help the Italian war efforts by producing components. The company also tried to deliver a special V16 automobile to Benito Mussolini, but never made it through the car brands’ competition for such achievement. After the conflict was over, Maserati restarted car production and shortly afterwards the Maserati brothers would leave the company for good, in 1947. They would then open the O.S.C.A.OscaOscaItaly, 1947 > 196710 models
12 photos
car manufacturer, which lived for 2 decades.

In the late 1950’s, the Maserati management started focusing on road cars too, in addition to the sports and racing vehicles. Nevertheless, French car builder CitröenCitroënCitroënFrance, 1919 > present91 models
5346 photos
11 videos
bought the Italian company in 1968 and the engineering and technology from both brands were borrowed from one another in order to improve each other’s vehicles. When Citröen and another French car builder, PeugeotPeugeotPeugeotFrance, 1882 > present120 models
3839 photos
7 videos
, merged companies, Maserati only managed to survived thanks to Italian government funds and was bought by Alessandro de Tomaso in 1975. The former racing driver took the company’s direction and revived it.

American car company ChryslerChryslerChryslerUnited States of America, 1925 > present70 models
873 photos
1 video
bought a significant part of Maserati’s shares in the beginning of the 1990’s but shortly later, in 1993, the FiatFiatFiatItaly, 1899 > present158 models
4864 photos
35 videos
Group purchased it and began investing on its revitalization. Maserati’s control was fully taken over by FerrariFerrariFerrariItaly, 1947 > present232 models
5131 photos
37 videos
(which is part of the Fiat Group itself) in 1999, to be its luxury segment, but Ferrari “gave it back” to Fiat in 2005.

 



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Logo

The Maserati badge is a traditional symbol of the town where the brand’s factory was first built, Bologna, before being moved to Modena. It is composed by a red trident above a blue base, which represents Neptune’s trident.

History tells that the only Maserati brother that wasn’t particularly passionate for cars and engineering, Mario, was the one that created the Maserati logo, basing its design on the Neptune’s statue at Bologna’s Piazza Maggiore.



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Motorsport

Maserati has been on official competition for 30 years, until 1957 when the company retired from racing, having achieved some major success in track and road races and even on powerboat competition. Maserati stays on the racing history as a brand that always searched for innovation and versatility, winning in all fronts: tracks, races, hill-climbs, on the road and on water at the powerboat circuits. Land and water speed records were achieved by the Italian car brand.

During those 3 decades of active competition, the Trident-represented brand has summed up nearly 500 overall victories and endless category wins, including 23 Championship titles, 32 Formula GP titles and two Indianapolis 500 titles, being the single Italian brand to date that has won this north American race.

Maserati debuted in racing in 1926 at the Targa Florio and its model Tipo 26 would bring home the champion title right away. The following year brought the first Grand Prix victory for Maserati, at the Tripoli GP, when Ernesto Maserati drove the Tipo 26Tipo 26BMaserati Tipo 26BItaly, 1927 > present1 photo
. The company’s most important titles in the sports prototype category seem to have been the ones at the Targa Florio, Buenos Aires 1000 Km and Nürburgring.

The two times that Maserati won the North American race Indy 500, by driver Wilbur Shaw at the wheels of an 8CTF8CTFMaserati 8CTFItaly, 1938 > present6 photos
, happened in 1939 and 1940 and set the company in racing history as the sole Italian brand that managed to win that race.

Even after Maserati officially retired from racing, some private drivers still make use of the brand’s cars and engines and bring home some important champion trophies. Recently, the Italian company seems to be making a comeback to the competition world with its single-series Trofeo Pirelli Vodafone Championship.



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