Maserati 150S For Sale?

Maserati 150S

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    Maserati 150S Review (1955 – 1957)

    Overall Summary

    Dusty Cars Rating

    If you were an amateur or a weekend track driver, getting yourself behind the wheel of the 150S would have been the closest thing to getting behind the wheel of a proper race car.

    The car had a more than capable engine, extremely low weight and precise suspension and steering. Sitting on a tubular frame chassis and weighing just above 1,300 lb meant that the car was one of the lightest ones out there, so even an I4 140 hp engine was enough for the top speed of 145 mph.

    Moreover, styling was also reminiscent of a proper racing car and very handsome, with no doors and roof and just two seats. The car was designed by famous and esteemed designers Fiandri and Fantuzzi.

    Having in mind its short lifespan, there were just two additions. The first one was the five-speed gearbox and the second one limited-slip differential.

    Driving & Performance

    Despite the sleek styling, driving was the biggest and most notable perk of the Maserati 150S. With 140 hp in a feather-light body, fthe car easily reached 145 mph. The same low weight advantage made is great for cornering and sweeping through long or sharp curves, as did the double wishbone front suspension and de Dion rear axle with transverse leaf springs. The FR layout was another, albeit expected, feature which improved the driving feel.

    The car was fitted exclusively with drum brakes, without disks even as an option, but this was not a problem for the 150S, since stopping 1,300 lb was an easy task for the drum brakes.

    Transmissions were made by ZF and they were used in many a lot higher level sports cars of the era. They were known for precision and confidence-inspiring performance.

    When Stirling Moss says a car is “sweet-handling”, there is nothing more to add.

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    Equipment & Comfort

    The car’s interior was completely utilitarian. The small dashboard had clearly visible instruments placed on a small space behind the steering wheel for easy and fast reading. The seats were buckets which provided incredible support for sharp turns, keeping the driver and passenger firmly in place.

    The transmission stick was placed on the central column, but brought very near to the steering wheel for quick operation. Generally speaking, everything was adapted to racing driving and enabling quick reactions. A proper driver’s car.

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    History & Development

    There were two reasons why the Maserati 150s came to exist. The first one was for homologation purposes that allowed the car to participate in certain races. The second one was drawing more customers who could afford cars with lower price and smaller engines. However, despite these features, the Maserati 150S was incredibly interesting to drive.

    The 150S was a perfect car for the amateur racer – simple, but capable and fun. It was not as wild as some other cars with twice as much power or more, but it was incredibly light and fun to manipulate. Even Stirling Moss said it was “sweet-handling and predictable”, but the racing star would have preferred a bit more power he was used to.

    The development started in 1953. The engine was created by Vittorio Bellentani and it was made of aluminum. The displacement was only 1.5 l and it was an I4, but the engine was incredibly advanced for that time, featuring DOHC setup, hemi combustion chambers, twin-plug ignition and dry sump. The engine produced 140 hp.

    The chassis came next and it was developed by Valerio Colotti. It was a tube-frame in order to ensure rigidity and reduce weight, both of which are incredibly important for a race car. The weight dropped to almost unbelievable 1380 lb which made the 150S incredibly fun, agile and interesting to drive, as well as the 140 hp engine more than sufficient.

    The body was styled by two different designers – Fiandri and Fantuzzi – and both of them created elegant, smooth and aerodynamic body which was very reminiscent of the racing cars from the era, making the 150S incredibly popular among buyers who had the chance to enjoy lots of racing flair without actually being racing drivers.

    One year after it came out, the 150S got 5-speed ZF gearbox and LSD.

    The car was made for two years, from 1955 to 1957, and 27 of them were made in total. Furthermore, there was a street version of the car, called 150 GT, which came in 1957 and it used the same engine slightly detuned to 130 hp and chassis of the Maserati 200S.

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    Facts & Figures

    Engines1.5 L I4
    Dimensions and weight
    Weight1,380 lb
    Maserati 150S years of production
    1955 – 1957
    Maserati 150S production numbers
    Coupe 27
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