Saturday, May 14

At $38,000, Is This ’12 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible A Grand Deal?

Nice Price or No Dice 2012 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible

Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Maserati easily looks like something Ryan Gosling’s character would have driven in the movie Crazy Stupid Love. Let’s see if this GranTurismo is also crazy-stupid expensive.

Yesterday’s 1995 Toyota Previa LE was a mid-engine minivan from a company that at the same time also offered a mid-engine sports car. That was back when Toyota was one of the cool kids, and it was quite the time to be alive. Today, you have to give the company credit for even still making a minivan, albeit doing so while following the money by building something like 32 different sizes of essentially the same crossover.

All of us appreciate cool, and not even an alarmingly high odometer reading could dissuade most of you from falling under the Previa’s weird spell and giving its modest $3,100 asking price a thumbs up. That, by the way, culminated in a solid 87 percent Nice Price win.

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I have to ask you a serious question — what’s wrong with Maserati?

I mean, look at this 2012 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible and tell me it’s not one of the most gorgeous cars that Pininfarina has ever Pininfarina’d. Add to that more trident badges and motifs than you could shake a stick at for brand imprinting from every angle, and you’ve got to figure that the car would be a success and hence highly in demand. After all, Ferraris of this era manage to hold a ton of their value. As an example, a Ferrari California of the same year, which is arguably the GranTurismo’s closest competitor, still can pull six figures these days. While a drop, that’s still more than half its original MSRP. After 10 years. That value is also not likely to drop anytime… well, ever. And don’t get me started on Porsche 991 prices!

Image for article titled At $38,000, Is This 2012 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible A Gorgeous Deal?

And yet, this drop-dead beautiful drop-top four-seater with its 434 horsepower all-alloy V8 engine that can create a staccato symphony of sounds suffers from a lack of passion that is evidenced in the model’s market values. It’s the same for all the mainstream Masers, and that’s kind of a shame.

We’ll get to this particular car’s value in a minute, but let’s first talk about the car. When the GranTurismo was introduced, Maserati’s product planners had the Aston Martin DB9 clearly in their sights, a fact the company readily admitted to the press at the U.S. launch. Offered as a coupe at that 2007 launch, the lineup was then doubled three years later with the advent of the drop-top, a model called the GranCabrio in Europe and GranTurismo Convertible here in the U.S. All of the GranTurismo Convertibles employed the 4.7 liter quad-cam V8, a mill co-developed between Maserati and Ferrari when the later company owned and operated the trident brand. That’s matched with a traditional six-speed automatic from ZF which does get wacky-big paddle shifters behind the wheel as a tradeoff for the slusher being nothing fancy.

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The rest of the cabin is a bit more befitting the car’s role as a long-distance tourer. It has room for two in comfort and four for short distances. That’s owed to the back buckets being intended for use and not just as an insurance ploy. There’s leather pretty much everywhere in here, and it all looks to be in still-lovely condition, as does the sprinkling of lumber on the dash and door panels.

The seller doesn’t note whether the car suffers from SBS (sticky button syndrome), and we don’t get a good enough look at the dash to discern that ourselves. According to the ad, a dash cam has been added, but it’s claimed that it has been “unobtrusively installed.” Other add-ons include trident logo floor mats and a quick-release front license mount.

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Maintenance on the 44,630-mile Maser includes a full fluid service within the last 1,000 miles, a replacement of the radiator and overflow tank within the last year, and the timing belts just two years back. The seller claims the Blu Oceano Metallic-painted bodywork is completely free of dings, dents, or scratches. Per the pictures in the ad, so too are the Neptune lobster fork wheels.

The car is said to carry a clean title, albeit showing out-of-date registration tags in the pics. Still, it must get out and about since the seller calls it “Italian art on wheels” and says “It’s a star wherever it goes.”

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Now it’s apparently going to a new owner. Or maybe not. The asking price is $38,000 and that’s just a little over a quarter of the car’s original MSRP of around $145,000. As we just discussed, a similar V8-powered Ferrari will conceivably draw over one-hundred grand, a drop of just around 50 percent over its as-new price tag. I’ll ask again — what’s wrong with Maserati?

Probably nothing. This is probably just a fluke and we should all go out and buy Maserati GranTurismos before everybody else figures out what’s going on.

Image for article titled At $38,000, Is This 2012 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible A Gorgeous Deal?

With that valuable financial tip in mind, what are your thoughts on this GranTurismo Convertible and that $38,000 price? Does that seem like a deal to get in on the ground floor of Italian exotica? Or, is the bottom yet to drop out on the Maserati brand?

You decide!

Spokane, Washington, Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

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