Working with Sports Car Shop in Eugene, Oregon, I've had the pleasure of sampling a couple of these. As their webmaster, I get some brief seat time with most of their cars on the way to the park for photographs that end up on the website. They are a Double Bubble specialists and actually have 3 Abarth Zagato's right now!
On to the car seen here which is for sale in Chicago by another sports car specialist, we have a fantastic looking driver that proudly wears California Mille decals; an event I'd love to attend especially in great little specialty sports car like this one!
This car is in very good mechanical and cosmetic condition with new biscuit tan with black piping leather interior, fresh headliner, recently painted dash, restored instruments via Palo Alto Speedometer, refinished steering wheel. New floor pan, water pump, electric fuel pump, horn, steering control arm, etc. Has full roll cage & glass windows. Car was also prepped for the 2010 California Mille, an aggressive 5 day drive, keeping up with Porsche 356s, small Alfas and Lancias. Great fun in the mountain twisties. This is not a trailer queen. We drive it frequently for rallies and car shows. The car has been maintained by an Italian mechanic who specializes in Fiats and Ferraris.
California Mille Rally number can be easily removed as it is stick on. Buyer can either leave it on or we can remove it.
The picture from behind demonstrates really well where this model gets it's nickname of double bubble. And I can confirm that from the inside these cars, those few extra inches of headroom would be critical if wearing a helmet as it's quite tight on the inside. That said, this one has a nice interior fitted that looks quite comfortable and stylish. Great looking car!
The Khamsin, which means strong wind in Egyptian, was launched in 1974 based on a design from Bertone. Only 430 units were produced, though production lasted until 1982! The V8 sports a healthy 320hp and is coupled to an automatic in this car. The Khamsin also has numerous innovative features that would be seen on production cars years later like a glass rear window below the hatch (CRX, Insight), speed sensitive power steering (most cars today), and the engine was placed way back in the engine bay to give the car a more balanced weight ratio front to back (S2000).
Check out this
quote from seller's listing:
My Maserati Khamsin is an uncommonly original example of this great Italian grand tourer. I bought it from the original owner, M.C. Gill, president and CEO of Gill Aerospace Corporation in 2006. Built in November 1974 and brought to the US in February 1975, it was the 7th Khamsin, #US1014, (out of the 420 ever built) that came to the USA. All miles and destinations have been documented in the company mileage log and I continued the tradition. It was serviced and cared for by the aerospace maintenance staff and at times by SM World. The paint is the original 1975 Maserati paint and in fantastic condition. Mr. Gill had a special instruction for the workers at his wearhouse for washing and waxing the Khamsin and it worked. The interior is all original with very minimal wear. The dash is perfect and so are the door panels. All electrical system works perfectly. The original radio, windows, lights and the power antena work perfectly and the original clock keeps perfect time. It was always garaged at the company's wearhouse and under cover and I've had it parked in my warm garage next to my Ferraris and connected to battery tender.
If there is any comfort in it for you, I must say; this Khamsin was always driven by men over 60 years of age and thus not abused at all. It still drives and feels tight on the road and it tracks perfectly straight. It looks fantastic for it's age and one cannot tell it apart from a restored one. The original european exhaust and the under carriage are in perfect condition. The Borg Warner transmission shifts smoothly and the drive-shaft is tight. All original US emission controls are on the car. I have kept up with all necessary services in the past 5 years, ie; plugs, filters, oil, etc. and have installed new hydraulic accumulators/spheres as well. I am greatful for having this original Khamsin and if you're tired of seeing poorly restored ones or just bad examples of this great car, this one may just make you a proud and happy owner. It does not need anything at this time. If you're reading this add then you probably know about the car more than I do.
The owner really does seem to represent a very clean and original car. The lines on this model aren't exactly what you'd call beautiful but they fit the period perfectly. My only complaint would be the automatic transmission, but for true long distance GT driving, I'm sure it does just fine.
GTV's are always easy fodder for this blog but the pictures and action on this auction compelled me to post it. It's so sharp and really presented the way I'd want to own. Close to original but with tasteful upgrades to complete the look.
quote from the seller's listing:
Here is my 1968 Alfa Romeo GTV originally sold in France. The car was brought to the US in the early 2000's and was restored to a very nice driver condition in 2005 and before my ownership. The car runs and drives very well. It is completely reliable. The paint is not perfect but presents very well. The can starts and runs great. It shifts very well with no second gear issues. All lights and gauges work. The car drives very well around town as well as on the highway. The brakes and clutch are in good operating condition. The car was fitted with an aftermarket air conditioning unit. 14" Panasport wheels with good Yokohama tires. Overall a nice GTV and cool because Alfa never sold a 1968 model year car here in the States. ***Please note I have changed the amber inboard lights to clear. Amber lights included.
Bidding has been swift and considering there is still 7 days to go with this auction, it appears the reserve has been met and the current bid is over $18k.