10 Things You Didn’t Know About the Maserati Brand
Maserati is a name that nearly every person in the world has heard of. Whether you are intimately familiar with the luxury Italian automaker, or you know of the Maserati brand in name only, we invite you to become better acquainted with this premium automaker. The Maserati brand was established in Bologna, Italy, in 1914, but not as an automotive manufacturer. The history of this high-end brand is immense and incredibly diverse. From the moment that the Maserati name was introduced to the world, up through the point in which the redesigned 2017 Maserati Quattroporte arrived at dealerships around the globe, there has not been a single dull moment.
10 Things You Didn’t Know About Maserati
Whether you are a seasoned Maserati owner, or have barely heard the name mentioned, get to know this Italian automaker by reading through our list of incredible truths, regarding the foremost name in automotive luxury and performance. You may know one or two, but we are betting that you will learn more new things about Maserati, than not.
- It Started with a Spark: Plug, that is. The founding brothers of the Maserati luxury automotive brand were Alfieri and Ettore. Both men were brilliant engineers, who designed spark plugs for vehicles in the very beginning. After the start of World War I, the brothers were enlisted by the government to design and manufacture spark plugs for military aircraft engines. Once the war ended, Alfieri and Ettore returned to their hometown where they opened up shop in an old bottle factory, and continued to improve car engine spark plugs.
- The Trident Symbol: While three of the Maserati brothers, Alfieri, Ernesto, and Ettore had mechanical minds, the fourth brother was an artist at heart. Despite his disinterest in the technical side of the business, the fourth brother, Mario, focused his efforts on creating a logo for the Maserati brand. Drawing inspiration from his hometown of Bologna, Italy, Mario designed the trident logo for the company after admiring the Statue of Neptune in the Piazza Maggiore. Symbolizing strength, the trident remains a constant in the entire Maserati lineup.
- A Passion for Racing: The entire Maserati company was founded to not only manufacture spark plugs, but also racing engines. The brothers had a passion for automotive racing, and it shined through in everything they did. The first Maserati model for public consumption was not even introduced until the early 1940s, with the introduction of the GranTurismo in 1942. Even after the brothers began selling vehicles to the public, their true endeavors remained within the racing circuit.
- Only Italian Automaker to Win Indy 500: Twice, that is. In 1939 and 1940, Maserati brand racecars took home the ultimate victory from the Indy 500 race in Indiana. This is not only a big accomplishment on its own, but it is also important due to the fact that Maserati is the only Italian company to win this iconic race. Ferrari and Alfa Romeo haven’t been able to pull it off, with Maserati still holding onto this impressive title.
- Racing Engine in a Luxury Sedan: Believe it or not, the very concept of placing a race car engine in a luxury sedan was foreign up until the creation of the Quattroporte in 1963. The idea to pair these two components was first mentioned by an Italian journalist, and it turned out to be the inspiration Maserati needed to propel itself into its next chapter.
- High-End Interior Designs: Everyone knows that Maserati brand vehicles are luxurious by nature. Boasting elegant interior appointments with refined materials – no other automotive brand has been able to replicate the interiors that Maserati is known for. Maserati doesn’t just create premium interiors, they bring in renowned designers in the fashion world to turn their vehicle interiors into true masterpieces. The very first example of this is when Italian designer Giorgetto Giugiaro was commissioned by Maserati to design the Ghibli model in the early 1960s. Today, buyers can enjoy the styling of Italian fashion house Ermenegildo Zegna with luxurious silk interiors available on the entire model lineup.
- Commissioned to Build a Car for Mussolini: Benito Mussolini may have been busy in his role as fascist dictator, but he managed to commission Maserati to build a custom car that was able to outperform Hitler’s Porsche. This overly petty competition never actually transpired, as the project was thrown out by the brand for unconfirmed reasons.
- Famous Past Owners: In 1978, Sandro Pertini was the Italian Head of State, and he made headlines when he chose a Maserati Quattroporte Royale as his presidential car. From that time on, plenty of famous names have purchased Maserati models to solidify their high status in society. From athletes to the Hollywood elite, American royalty have been opting to drive around town in the style that only Maserati can deliver. Bradley Cooper, Gwen Stefani, Cameron Diaz, Britney Spears, Apolo Ohno, and 50 Cent have all been spotted on numerous occasions in their favorite Maserati nameplates.
- Purchased by Fiat: Maserati has been through a few owners in the past, but the most recent change in ownership came in 1993 when the brand was acquired by the Fiat Group. The merger was an interesting one, as Fiat owned one of Maserati’s longest-running rivals, Ferrari. Despite this perceived conflict of interest, the partnership has proven a successful one for all parties involved.
- Still Committed to Racing: Maserati’s passion for racing did not die with the four founding brothers, but continues to this very day. In 2014, the brand revealed the Alfieri Concept Car at the Geneva Auto Show, which gave affirmation to the entire world that Maserati was still committed to its race car heritage.
Whether you already knew some of these interesting facts about Maserati or not, it is hard to argue with the fact that this particular automotive brand has one intense past history. As one of the oldest brands still available on the market today, a new Maserati isn’t just a car, it’s a piece of international history. Be sure to stop in at Maserati of Albany to take the newest 2017 models for a test drive, and find one that is perfect for you.