With the steep appreciation of any Ferrari with a manual transmission, the chances of owning an Italian coupe with a stick and a V8 seems reserved for only the ultra wealthy. However, one Italian coupe is now more affordable than a brand new Honda Civic yet still offers a manual transmission mated to a full-fledged Ferrari V8 with a body sculpted by the legendary Giorgetto Giugiaro. The Maserati Coupe GT is your discount ticket into the exclusive club of exotic Italian coupe ownership while still offering the necessary ingredients to make this car worth showing off. Maserati’s suffer from depreciation faster than a car thrown into the ocean, and models built only a few years ago can easily be found for a fraction of their original retail price. These depreciation bargains offer normal people like you and I the opportunity to taste the good life, and for around $20,000 the Maserati Coupe GT is one of the greatest used car deals in history.
The Maserati Coupe GT, which was built between 2001 and 2007, is powered by the F136 R V8 engine, this family of V8 engines was used in numerous Ferrari products like the F430 and 458 Italia and has far more prestige compared to any other V8 in this price range. The version used in the Coupe GT produced 385 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque making it very easy to move this 3,600lb car. The engine featured a dry sump lubrication system, variable valve timing, and only weighted 405 pounds. Besides the performance, this engine also sounds incredible and benefits well from an aftermarket exhaust, its makes the distinct Italian sound that we all dream of. Although this version is not like its high revving cousin used in the 458, it still pulls nicely to its 7,000 rpm redline and was meant for around town usability rather than track driving.
To back up the V8 customers had a choice of either a traditional 6-speed manual or the optional Cambiocorsa paddle shift gearbox. The Cambiocorsa gearbox has not aged well and reminds us of a time before automatics were the superior transmission is every measurable way. Both transmissions were located in the rear of the car for better weight distribution and improved handling. It’s quite obvious to chose the timeless 6-Speed over the dated flappy paddle nightmare for the purest driving experience.
The traditional dual wishbone suspension setup made this car great for lively back road carving and could easily handle the power of the V8. It even features an active suspension system called “Sky Hook”, which is easily the best suspension name in the world. “Sky Hook” is based on coil overs but uses accelerometers to adjust the suspension for the selected ride mode. Owners could transition from comfort all the way to sport, and the system could even work with the flappy paddle transmission to adjust for specific driving situations.
This car is more than just a discounted Ferrari engine, the elegant curves of the exterior still look beautiful today, and the brand recognition of Maserati ensures you will get noticed for all the right reasons. The elegant exterior still leaves room for four inside and the richly trimmed interior compliments the other high-end features in this Italian sport coupe. With the engineering of a Ferrari for the price of a Camry the Maserati Coupe GT is the bargain of the century and we all need one. You don’t need Ferrari money to experience a similar driving experience and own an Italian engineering masterpiece, get your Coupe GT before they are all gone!