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The Maserati Biturbo was a family of executive grand tourers produced by Italian automobile manufacturer Maserati between 1981 and 1994. The original Biturbo was a two-door, four-seater notchback coupé (of somewhat smaller dimensions than the BMW 3 Series of the time) featuring, as the name implies, a two-litre V6 engine with two turbochargers and a luxurious interior.

Maserati Biturbo
1985 Maserati Biturbo E, front left (US).jpg
Maserati Biturbo E
Overview
ManufacturerMaserati
Production1981–1994
Assembly
Designer
Body and chassis
ClassGrand tourer (S)
Body style
LayoutFront-engine, rear-wheel-drive
Related
Powertrain
Engine
  • 2.0 L twin-turbocharged 90° V6
  • 2.5 L twin-turbocharged 90° V6
  • 2.8 L twin-turbocharged 90° V6
Transmission
Dimensions
Wheelbase
  • 2,514 mm (99.0 in) (coupé)
  • 2,600 mm (102.4 in) (saloon)
  • 2,400 mm (94.5 in) (Spyder)
Length
  • 4,150 mm (163.4 in) (coupé)
  • 4,400 mm (173.2 in) (saloon)
  • 4,040 mm (159.1 in) (Spyder)
Width
  • 1,710 mm (67.3 in) (coupé, Spyder)
  • 1,730 mm (68.1 in) (saloon)
Height
  • 1,310 mm (51.6 in) (coupé, Spyder)
  • 1,360 mm (53.5 in) (saloon)
Chronology
PredecessorMaserati Merak
SuccessorMaserati Ghibli (AM336)
Maserati Quattroporte IV

The car was designed by Pierangelo Andreani, Chief of Centro Stile Maserati up to 1981, somewhat influenced by the design of the then recent Quattroporte III (penned by Italdesign Giugiaro).

All Maserati models introduced from the Biturbo's inception in 1981 until 1997 were based on the original Biturbo architecture, including the later grand tourers like the Shamal and Ghibli II. The Barchetta, while of a different layout entirely, used an ultimate version of the Biturbo V6 engine.

HistoryEdit

When Alejandro de Tomaso acquired Maserati in 1976, he had ambitious plans for the marque. His plan was to combine the prestige of the Maserati brand with a sports car that would be more affordable, replacing the higher-priced models that had traditionally made up the Maserati range, such as the Bora and Khamsin which were developed under Citroën ownership.

The Biturbo was initially a strong seller and brought Italian prestige to a wide audience, with sales of about 40,000 units. Sales figures fell in subsequent years. De Tomaso also used another of his companies, Innocenti, to produce body panels of the car and also to provide final assembly.[1] De Tomaso later sold Maserati to Fiat when he suffered losses who grouped the company with their erstwhile rival Ferrari.

The Biturbo is number 28 in the BBC book Crap Cars and in 2007 was selected as Time's worst car of 1984, although they ranked the Chrysler TC by Maserati as a "greater ignominy".[2]

The Biturbo competed unsuccessfully in the British Touring Car Championship in the late 1980s, the European Touring Car Championship and the World Touring Car Championship (1987).

Gandini's first restylingEdit

Between 1987 and 1989, a facelift designed by Marcello Gandini was phased in, which helped to soften the sharp bodylines present on the original design. These changes first found their way onto the 1987 430. The redesign included a taller and more rounded grille with mesh grille and bonnet, aerodynamic wing mirrors and 15-inch disc-shaped alloy wheels, now mounted on 5-lug hubs. Some models received the wraparound bumpers with integral foglights and the deep sills introduced with the 2.24v in early 1989.[3] Mechanical upgrades first seen on the 2.24v also began filtering through the Biturbo range in early 1989, including suspension and power steering improvements as well as ventilated front disc brakes.[3]

Gandini's second restylingEdit

 
Maserati Biturbo (1991 Facelift)

In 1991, the entire lineup was restyled for a second time, again by the hand of Marcello Gandini; the design features introduced with the Shamal were spread to the other models. Gandini developed an aerodynamic kit that included a unique spoiler at the base of the windscreen hiding the windshield wipers, a rear spoiler, and side skirts. The new two-element headlights used poly-ellipsoidal projectors developed by Magneti-Marelli. Inset in body-colour housings, they flanked a redesigned grille, slimmer and integrated in the bonnet; the 1988 bumpers were adopted by all models. The 15-inch isc-shaped alloys were replaced by new 16-inch seven-spoke wheels, with a hubcap designed to look like a centerlock nut. The second facelift was referred to as nuovolook.[citation needed]

SpecificationsEdit

The cars in the Biturbo family were of unibody steel construction, with a conventional layout of front-longitudinally mounted engine and gearbox. Suspension was of the MacPherson strut type upfront and semi-trailing arms at the rear, with[coil springs, double-acting dampers and anti-roll bars on both axles. The differential and rear suspension arms were supported by a subframe.

EnginesEdit

 
12-valve Biturbo V6 engine

The Maserati Biturbo was the first production car to use a twin-turbocharged engine. It also featured the first production car engine with three valves per cylinder. The aluminium 90-degree SOHC V6 was a completely new design even though it was roughly based on the 2.0 L engine used in the Merak, itself based on earlier Formula One Maserati V8 engines, designed by Giulio Alfieri. The 2-litre version featured wet aluminium sleeves coated with Nikasil.

In Italy, new cars with engine displacement over 2,000 cc were subjected to a 38% value added tax, against 19% on smaller displacement cars. Therefore, throughout the Biturbo' production run, there both two-litre models aimed mainly at the domestic market and "export" versions, initially with a 2.5 L V6 engine and later, a 2.8 L V6 engine. The carbureted 2.5 L engine was rated at 185 hp (138 kW) and 282 N⋅m (208 lb⋅ft) of torque in North American specification and 192 PS (141 kW) and 298 N⋅m (220 lb⋅ft) of torque in European specification.[4]

 
1985 Maserati 2.5L 18V Engine

In 1984 and 1985, the 2.5 L V6 models utilized a single Weber DCNVH carburetor under a smooth aluminum alloy plenum fed by twin IHI turbo chargers (one per bank of cylinders). Maserati, U.S. dealers, and sports car enthusiasts began experimenting with intercoolers for which many variants were fitted and mutually endorsed by Maserati. Intercoolers included air-to-air (two variants: top mounted assembly which was not as efficient as the separate side-mounted versions) and water-to-air intercoolers, all produced by Spearco. In 1986, the 2.5 L V6 models switched to a Weber 34DAT carburetor which was proven to be less efficient and more problematic to maintain than the Weber DCNVH used previously. On initial viewing of the 1986 Biturbo engine bay, the aluminum alloy plenum is finned with a slightly different footprint and the intake manifold was specific for that model. Similar experimentation with intercoolers and placement continued through 1986 models. However, the side-mounted water-to-air intercooler became the standard variant utilized until late 1986 / early 1987 when the intercoolers were placed, by the Maserati factory, outside the engine bay located in front of the radiator where they remained throughout the remaining models in the Maserati Biturbo family tree.

Fuel injection was fitted in 1987 raising power to 187 hp (139 kW) on North American models.

In 1989 the enlarged 2.8 L engine raised the power to 225 hp (168 kW) and 246 lb⋅ft (334 N⋅m) of torque for North America and 250 PS (184 kW; 247 hp) for Europe.

A 1,996 cc DOHC 36-valve (6 valves per cylinder) V6 engine was developed for the Biturbo but never manufactured.[5]

Engine type Displacement Valvetrain Fuel system Model(s)
AM 452 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 18 valves Carburetor Biturbo, Biturbo S
AM 453 2.5 L (2,491 cc) 18 valves Carburetor Biturbo E
AM 470 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 18 valves Fuel injection Biturbo i
AM 471 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 18 valves Fuel injection Biturbo Si, 222, 4.18v, Spyder
AM 472 2.5 L (2,491 cc) 18 valves Fuel injection Biturbo i 2500
AM 473 2.8 L (2,790 cc) 18 valves Fuel injection 228, 430, 222 E, Spyder 2800, Karif
AM 475 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 24 valves Fuel injection 2.24v, 4.24v, Spyder III 2.0
AM 477 2.8 L (2,790 cc) 24 valves Fuel injection 222 4v, 430 4v
AM 490 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 24 valves Fuel injection Racing, Barchetta Stradale

Biturbo coupé (Tipo AM331)Edit

BiturboEdit

An early Biturbo, showing the first design of alloy wheels.
Maserati Biturbo S

The Biturbo is a two-door 2+2 coupé, introduced in December 1981.[6] It is powered by a twin-turbocharged V6, rated at 180–205 PS (132–151 kW). The Biturbo name was dropped when the car was significantly redesigned in 1988. After 1994, the two-door coupé was again significantly reworked and became the Ghibli.

In July 1983, Maserati launched the sporty Biturbo S, for the Italian market only. Power was increased by 25 PS (18 kW) to 205 PS (151 kW) at 6500 rpm, courtesy of increased turbo boost and twin intercoolers which fed fresh air by two NACA ducts in the bonnet. The chassis was updated as well with lowered suspension and new, wider 6½Jx14" magnesium alloy wheels were fitted. The S was recognizable by its black mesh grille and the external trim (grille frame, headlight housings, window surround and Maserati badges on the C-pillar) finished in a dark bronze shade instead of chrome. The customer could only choose between two paint schemes: silver or red, both paired to the lower half of the body in contrasting metallic gunmetal grey.[7] In the same year, the 2.5-litre Biturbo 2500 or Biturbo E (for Export) was also introduced, and was joined some twelve months later by the Biturbo ES with power outputs 205 or 196 PS (151 or 144 kW), respectively in European- or catalysed US-specification. In 1985, all models received updates and were renamed Biturbo II, Biturbo S II and Biturbo E II. The cylinders were now Nikasil-coated, a more capacious fuel tank was fitted and a Sensitork limited slip differential replaced the earlier Salisbury clutch-type one. The second series of the Biturbo was recognizable by its new 6"Jx14" wheels similar in design to the Biturbo S wheels; the S II wheels had fully painted faces, without the silver center.

1986 brought a major change: carburation gave way to Weber-Marelli fuel injection, and the Italian market models were now known as the Biturbo i and Biturbo Si. Power outputs increased across the range, albeit at some loss of throttle response. The original square instrument cluster (from 1983 - 1985) was changed in 1986 in favour of a rounded shape instrument cluster. The intercoolers were moved from under the bonnet to a front-mounted position directly behind the grille, making the NACA ducts on the Si's bonnet merely decorative.

In 1986, an Italy-only special edition of the Si called the Biturbo Si Black was introduced, whose main feature was a black on metallic grey paint scheme.105 units were made until 1988. Performance was the same as for the regular Si.[8] In 1987, Maserati launched the final car to wear the Biturbo badge, the U.S only 2.5 litre export market model Biturbo (E) Si Black. with black on metallic grey paint scheme and special interior trim. Only a total of 25 cars were known to have been produced for the U.S. market.

222Edit

In May 1988, with the models receiving a facelift, the Biturbo name was dropped in favour of 222—meaning 2-door, 2-litre engine and 2nd generation. The car carried all the visual clues of Gandini's signature design language, with a more rounded grille and bonnet as on the 430, different wing mirrors and a rear spoiler. The 222 premiered at the 1988 Turin Auto Show.[9] The engine size of the 222 E export model grew from the Biturbo's 2.5-litre to 2.8-litres. A mixed velour-leather interior was standard on the domestic models, while export markets got leather upholstery as standard.[6]

 
1994 Maserati 222 SR

1990 saw the arrival of the 2.8 L 222 SE, heir to the Biturbo ES. It inherited the latter's limited paint finish availability (red, silver or black) and the dark trim and grille, while modern aprons and side skirts (blacked out as well) came from the 2.24v.[6]

After just a year, the 222 SE was replaced by the restyled 222 SR; the SR offered adaptive suspension as an option. Simultaneously the very similar 222 4v. joined the lineup; it was a 222 SR with a 2.8 L four-valve engine, the first car to incorporate a DOHC engine in the direct Biturbo E lineage. It featured wider, 16-inch, 7-spoke alloy wheels.

2.24vEdit

In December 1988 Maserati unveiled the most powerful variant of the two-litre models: the 2.24v, powered by the new four-valve head engine. The engine itself had been displayed at the Turin Auto Show in May 1988.[10] The 2.24v was the first model to use the more modern wraparound front and rear fascias with integrated foglights, and deep side skirts. It was also distinguished by the 15-inch disc shaped alloy wheels as also used on the 422 and 430, a black grille and trim treatment, rear deck spoiler and lower body two-tone paint. The bonnet was adorned by two reversed NACA ducts to extract hot air from the engine bay, as on the Karif, while at the rear there were four exhaust tips.[3] It went on sale in early 1989 in Italy, the model's most important market. The 2.24v replaced the earlier Biturbo Si, which was taken out of production in the latter half of 1988.[3]

In 1991 Gandini's restyling transformed the 2.24v into the 2.24v II. The new series cars were fitted with a catalytic converter, and got Meccanica Attiva suspension on all four wheels as standard. Production of the 2.24v ceased in 1993.

RacingEdit

 
A 1991 Racing at Magny-Cours

The Maserati Racing (Tipo 331) was a more potent variant of the 2.24v with a higher power output, and was meant as an intermediate model beneath the more aggressive Shamal. It was first introduced to the press in December 1990, only 230 units were built from 1991 to 1992 and all were meant for the Italian market only. Later, several units could be found exported across Europe (France, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands) which indicated import to those countries from Italy; limited documentation was available, which made homologation in some countries (still) a huge administrative challenge.[11]

 
Engine

The lowered, electronic KONI shock absorbers allowed to adjust damping on four settings, allowing for comfort or road handling at the flick of a switch. This is combined with a five-speed manual gearbox manufactured by Getrag and a limited slip differential from Maserati but suspected to use Quaife technology.

The choice of colours of the Racing was limited to red or black. On the interior, the only change was the paneling, painted dark grey (carbon fibre grey) instead of being wood trimmed.

Combined with new settings on the two engine controllers from Magneti Marelli, in charge of the ignition, the fuel injection and the turbo boost management, allowed the power to increase to 287 PS (211 kW; 283 hp) at 6,250 rpm with a specific output of 142 hp/l. The torque is 374 N⋅m (276 lb⋅ft) at 4,250 rpm. This engine was given the designation AM 490 in the Maserati engine reference book. The engine was made compatible with lead-free gasoline. Induction consists of two IHI water-cooled turbochargers with two air-to-air intercoolers. Changes from the 2.24v's engine include a new, lighter crankshaft, new exhaust valves (sodium filled for improved heat dissipation), new combustion chambers, new lighter connecting rods, new lighter forged aluminium pistons, and new IHI turbochargers.

Performance stats

  • Max. speed: 256 km/h (159 mph)[12]
  • 0–100 km/h (0–62 mph): 5.9 seconds.[12]
  • 0–1,000 m (0.00–0.62 mi): 25.60 seconds.[12]

Versions and enginesEdit

Model Years Engine Power Fuel system Notes Units produced
Biturbo 1981–85 1996 cc V6 SOHC 180 PS (132 kW; 178 hp) Carburetor Italy only 9,206
Biturbo E 1983–85 2491 cc 185 PS (136 kW; 182 hp) 4,577
Biturbo S 1983–86 1996 cc 205 PS (151 kW; 202 hp) Italy/France 1,038
Biturbo ES 1984–85 2491 cc 205 PS (151 kW; 202 hp) 1,480
Biturbo II 1985–87 1996 cc 180 PS (132 kW; 178 hp) Italy only
Biturbo S 2.5 1984–88 2491 cc 196 PS (144 kW; 193 hp) Catalysator
Biturbo E II 2.5 1985–87 185 PS (136 kW; 182 hp) Catalysator
Biturbo S II 1985–86 1996 cc 210 PS (154 kW; 207 hp) Italy only
Biturbo i 1986–90 188 PS (138 kW; 185 hp) Fuel injection Italy only 683
Biturbo Si 1986–88 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp) Italy only 992
Biturbo Si Black 1986–88 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp) Italy only 450
Biturbo Si 2.5 1987–91 2491 cc 188 PS (138 kW; 185 hp) Catalysator 430
2.24v 1988–92 1996 cc V6 DOHC 245 PS (180 kW; 242 hp) Italy only 1,147
222 1988–90 V6 SOHC 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp) Catalysator, Italy only 1,156
222 E 1988–90 2790 cc 250 PS (184 kW; 247 hp) 722
1988–93 225 PS (165 kW; 222 hp) Catalysator
222 SE 1990–91 250 PS (184 kW; 247 hp) 210
1990–91 225 PS (165 kW; 222 hp) Catalytic converter (US: 225 hp)
2.24v II 1991–93 1996 cc V6 DOHC 240 PS (177 kW; 237 hp) Catalysator, Italy only 254
222 SR 1991–93 2790 cc V6 SOHC 225 PS (165 kW; 222 hp) Catalysator
222 4v 1991–94 2790 cc V6 DOHC 279 PS (205 kW; 275 hp) Catalysator 130
Racing 1991–92 1996 cc 285 PS (210 kW; 281 hp) 230[11]

Biturbo saloon (Tipo AM332)Edit

 
Rear view of a Biturbo 420 saloon

Two years after the Biturbo's introduction a four-door version was unveiled. In comparison to the coupé, the saloon sat on a 8.6 cm (3 in) longer wheelbase and had a more pronounced rear overhang. While keeping a resemblance with the rest of lineup, only the nose and bonnet were shared between the equivalent two and four-door models; all the bodywork from the A-pillar to the rear is specific to the saloons. Due to the longer wheelbase and added luxury components, the weight increased by 100 kg (220 lb).[13] Most of the four-door Biturbos have slightly less power output than their two-door counterparts, due to the different routing of the exhaust system.

420 and 425Edit

 
Maserati 425

The first four-door Biturbo introduced was the 425 (1983–86), equipped with the "export" 2.5 litre engine. In 1984, the 425 (along with the two-door models) received a new dashboard. Two years later, a two-litre version of the 425, the 420 (1985–86), was added for the domestic market, together with the more powerful 420 S. The 420 S sported improved handling, the twin intercooled engine[14] and the same aesthetic accoutrements of the Biturbo S: dark finish trim, two-tone paint, two-tone wheels and NACA ducts on the bonnet, delivering fresh air to the intercoolers. Like their two-door siblings in 1986, the saloons were updated with the Weber fuel injection, thus spawning the 425 i (1986–89), 420 i (1985–87) and 420 Si (1985–87). The latter featured a somewhat more restrained styling than its predecessor.

430Edit

 
1989 Maserati 430

In 1986, Maserati launched the high-performance version of the Biturbo' saloon called the 430 which was produced from 1986–1994. It was the flagship variant of the saloon range, which debuted the largest 2.8-litre version of the Biturbo engine.

The 430 was distinguished by 15-inch 5-lug disc alloy wheels and a more rounded grille and hood, that later found their way to the rest of the lineup with the first 1988 facelift. The 430 was considered to be a full grand tourer, with standard leather upholstery and walnut veneered steering wheel rim, dashboard, door panels, gear shift knob along with the handbrake lever.

1991 saw the introduction of the restyled 430 4v (1991–1994), powered by the latest 24-valve engine – as the "4v" suffix implied. As the top of the range 2.8 L saloon, the 430 received the full aerodynamic package, including a discreet spoiler on the trailing edge of the bootlid. The regular 430 variant was updated as well (gaining new bumpers) and remained on sale alongside its four-valve counterpart.

422Edit

As the Biturbo was replaced by the 222, the 420s gave way to the 422 produced from 1988–1992. The 422 was basically a 420 Si with the 1988 restyled grille, wing mirrors and wheels.[15]

4.24vEdit

The 4.24v was the four-door offering of the 2.24v. This new subfamily of the Biturbos paired Maserati's four-valve 2.0 L V6 with the new Meccanica Attiva suspension.[6] The 4.24v also adopted all of the exterior trappings of the 2.24v, including black trim and grille, black deep side skirts and a small spoiler on the boot. In 1991, the 4.24v was subjected to the restyling alongside the rest of the range, becoming the 4.24v II. Catalytic converters meant power decreased somewhat in comparison with the previous model.

4.18vEdit

The 4.18v was launched in December 1990 and was meant for the Italian market only. It was very similar to the 422, but utilised an engine with three-valve per cylinder heads. It was the first Biturbo to feature ABS as standard. With 77 examples made, it is the rarest in the entire Biturbo family.[6]

Versions and enginesEdit

 
1991 Maserati 430 4v.
Model Years Engine Displacement Power Fuel system Notes Units produced
425 1983–89 V6 SOHC 2.5 L (2,491 cc) 200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp) Carburetor 2,052
425i 1987–89 V6 SOHC 2.5 L (2,491 cc) 188 PS (138 kW; 185 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 320
420 1985–86 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 180 PS (132 kW; 178 hp) Carburetor Italy only 2,810
420i 1986–88 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 185 PS (136 kW; 182 hp) Fuel injection 1,124
420 S 1985–87 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 205 PS (151 kW; 202 hp) Carburetor Italy only 254
420 Si 1986–88 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 210 PS (154 kW; 207 hp) Fuel injection 524
430 1987–94 V6 SOHC 2.8 L (2,790 cc) 225 PS (165 kW; 222 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 995
422 1988–92 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,997 cc) 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 978
4.18v 1990–92 V6 SOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 77
4.24v 1990–92 V6 DOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 245 PS (180 kW; 242 hp) Fuel injection Italy only 384
4.24v II 1991–93 V6 DOHC 2.0 L (1,996 cc) 240 PS (177 kW; 237 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 490
430 4v 1991–93 V6 DOHC 2.8 L (2,790 cc) 280 PS (206 kW; 276 hp) Fuel injection Catalysator 291

Biturbo spyder (Tipo AM333)Edit

 
1987 US-specification Spyder

The convertible iteration of the Biturbo was designed and assembled by Zagato in Milan. It was Zagato's first work for Maserati since the A6G/2000 thirty years earlier.[16] Embo of Caramagna was first commissioned to develop a four-seater cabriolet version of the Biturbo, which was shown at the April 1982 Turin Auto Show,[17] but their proposal never made it to production.

The Spyder was built on a 2.4 m (7.9 ft) wheelbase, some 11.4 cm (4 in) shorter than the coupé's. Still, since it is a strict two-seater with folding rear seats, the luggage space is larger than in the original Biturbo.[16] It was on this short chassis that the sporty hardtop Karif was later developed. Overall, 3,076 Spyders were built over a ten-year period.[18] This was a production record for open-topped Maseratis.

The first Spyder was launched at the Turin Motor Show in 1984. It was offered with both the 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre "export" engine. Two years later, fuel injection was implemented and the car was now called the Spyder i. 297 were made with the 2.0 L engine and 122 with the 2.5 L engine.[6]

 
Maserati Spyder i '90

In 1989, the Spyder received a facelift, known as Spyder i 1990 (or '90). The car received the full 1988 Gandini treatment, one year after the other models: rounded grille, fuller bumpers, aerodynamic wing mirrors and 15" wheels on five-lug hubs. As on the rest of the Biturbos, the export engine had the increased displacement of 2.8-litres. A four-speed automatic transmission was available on request. As for the saloons, all engines benefitted from water-cooled turbochargers and intercoolers, increasing reliability considerably over the earlier models.[19]

The third series, or Spyder III, was introduced in 1991 in occasion of Gandini's second facelift that renewed the entire range. This included the new bonnet and grille, ellypsoidal headlights in body-colour housings, a spoiler at the base of the windscreen, deeper body-colour sills and 16-inch seven-spoke wheels. The Spyder IIIs were fitted with Maserati's Ranger limited slip differential. Whereas the 2.0 L third series Spyder received 24-valve engines, 2.8 L cars still used 18-valves, thus remaining the only 2.8 L Biturbo model to never get a four-valve head upgrade.[6]

 
Maserati Spyder III

Versions and enginesEdit

Model Years Engine Displacement Power Fuel system Notes Units produced
Spyder 1984–88 V6 OHC 1996 cc 180 hp (134 kW) Carburetor Italy only 276
Spyder 2500 1984–88 V6 OHC 2491 cc 192 hp (143 kW) Carburetor Catalysator 1,049
Spyder i 1986–88 V6 OHC 1996 cc 185 hp (138 kW) Fuel injection 297
Spyder i 2500 1988–89 V6 OHC 2491 cc 188 hp (140 kW) Fuel injection Catalysator 122
Spyder i 1990 1989–91 V6 OHC 1996 cc 220 hp (164 kW) Fuel injection Catalysator, Italy only 309
Spyder i 1990 1989–91 V6 OHC 2790 cc 250 hp (186 kW) Fuel injection 603
1989–91 V6 OHC 2790 cc 225 hp (168 kW) Fuel injection Catalysator
Spyder III 1991–94 V6 DOHC 1996 cc 245 hp (183 kW) Fuel injection Italy only 200
1991–94 V6 DOHC 1996 cc 240 hp (179 kW) Fuel injection Catalysator, Italy only
Spyder III 2800 1991–94 V6 OHC 2790 cc 225 hp (168 kW) Fuel injection Catalysator 220

Maserati 228Edit

Maserati 228
 
Overview
Also calledMaserati 228i
Production1986–1992
DesignerPierangelo Andreani
Body and chassis
ClassGrand tourer
Body style2-door, 5-seat coupé
Powertrain
Engine2.8 L twin-turbocharged V6
Transmission5-speed ZF manual
4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase2,600 mm (102.4 in)
Length4,460 mm (175.6 in)
Width1,865 mm (73.4 in)
Height1,330 mm (52.4 in)
Kerb weight1,240 kg (2,734 lb) (dry)[20]
Chronology
PredecessorMaserati Kyalami

The Maserati 228 (Tipo AM334) was a two-door, 5-seater GT coupé based on the Biturbo chassis. It was conceived to fill the void left in the Maserati range by the departed Kyalami, and was therefore aimed at the same market of the large GTs of the past like the 3500 GT and Mexico.[20] To accomplish this, it was based on the longer wheelbase chassis (2.6 m) of the four-door Biturbos, and powered by the largest, 2.8 litre, 18-valve fuel injected V6 (hence the name 228 – 2-door, 2.8 L engine). Bilstein gas shock absorbers replaced the usual hydraulic ones, and a 4-speed automatic transmission was available on order.[20] The notchback coupé bodywork was styled by Pierangelo Andreani, and the car was wider and longer than the two-door Biturbos, with no common body panels; the interior was also more luxuriously appointed.

Maserati declared the car in the European-specification could accelerate to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.6 seconds and attain a top speed of 235 km/h (146 mph). A 24-valve but still carbureted prototype was shown in December 1984; the production version of the 228 was introduced at the 1986 Turin Motor Show, and 469 examples were made until 1992.[20]

Versions and enginesEdit

Model Years Engine Displacement Power Fuel system Notes Units produced
228 1986–92 V6 OHC 2,790 cc 250 bhp (186 kW) Fuel injection 469
225 PS (165 kW) Catalysator

Maserati KarifEdit

The Maserati Karif was a hardtop, 2-seat berlinetta based on the short Spyder chassis. It was fitted with the most powerful 2.8 L V6. Pairing the agile short wheelbase with a stiffer, enclosed body, it was the fastest and most exclusive coupé in the Maserati Biturbo lineup at the time.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Heitz, Rudolf, ed. (1 August 1985). Auto Katalog 1986 (in German). 29. Stuttgart: Vereinigte Motor-Verlage GmbH & Co. KG. p. 104. 81530/85001.
  2. ^ Neil, Dan (2007). "The 50 Worst Cars of All Time: 1984 Maserati Biturbo". Time Magazine.
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