Market Finds: A Stylish And Stealthy Maserati Bora Is The ‘70s Supercar You’ve Been Searching For

A Stylish And Stealthy Maserati Bora Is The ‘70s Supercar You’ve Been Searching For

Andrew Golseth By Andrew Golseth
May 1, 2016
11 comments

Photography Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Some of Giorgetto Giugiaro’s most iconic designs include the BMW M1, DeLorean DMC-12, Lotus Esprit, and—my personal favorite—the Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint GT. The legendary designer has given the world some incredibly beautiful machines spanning his half-century career. One of his, perhaps overshadowed, projects is the oh-so-Italian Tipo 117: the Maserati Bora.

Our Editorial Manager, Michael Banovsky, makes a compelling argument that the Bora is the perfect everyday supercar of yesteryear, and perhaps he’s onto something. When the car debuted in 1971, it was fast, the ride wasn’t jarring, the cabin comfortably housed two adult-sized occupants, and the shape was more graceful than many of it’s hard-edged counterparts—though, the Bora chassis was the base for one of the sharpest wedge design exercises: the Boomerang.

The more contemporary body even featured a rather large frunk, given mid engine layout limitations. Thanks to its partnership with Citroën during the era, the Bora received the French marque’s high-pressure LHM hydraulic system—which operated the speed-shedding four-wheel ventilated disc brakes, retractable headlamps, and driver seat controls. The independent suspension at all corners guaranteed a smooth ride—for an Italian super car, at least. Stylish silver Campagnolo aluminum wheels with polished center caps were fitted, making quite the contradistinction on this car’s otherwise stealthy looks.

Speaking of, is the Bora not the best looking Italian wedge when bathed in black? This 1975 Bora is one of just 289 of the slightly less powerful 4.7-liter equipped models versus the big bore 4.9-liter. Still, with 310 horses behind your spine, the four-cam V8 can jolt from naught-to-60 in under 7 seconds with another 90 mph available…in case you’re running late.

Chassis AM117 466 was actually produced in 1973, but sat unsold in Maserati’s possession for two years before going home with its first owner. The car was restored 2003 and sold to a German enthusiast before finally winding up in a French collection, where it currently stables. Still benefiting from its ’03 restoration, the Bora is offered in its factory non-metallic jet black over Senape tan leather interior—just look at those seats.

The car is still powered by its original powertrain accompanied by service invoices, including its most recent appointment record at the Monaco Cavallari, an official Maserati garage. This ZF five-speed Bora is said to drive wonderfully and only in need of a new caretaker—this is where you come in.

With brilliant colors, restored to new, and in top notch running condition, why would anyone buy a new Trident-adorned GT or SUV over this classic Maserati masterpiece? Pack a weekend bag, grab your significant other, and haul-ass to your desired destination—don’t forget to grab your tux from the cleaners on your way out of town.

History
– One of just 289 4.7-litre Boras produced
– Retains its original engine

Specifications
~310 hp, 4,719 cc mid-mounted V-8 engine with four Weber 42 DCNF twin-choke carburetors, five-speed ZF manual transaxle, four-wheel independent suspension with unequal-length A-arms, coil springs and anti-roll bars, and hydraulic four-wheel disc brakes. Wheelbase: 2,600 mm.

Vehicle information
Chassis no.: AM117 466
Engine no.: AM107/07/47 466

Valuation
Auction house: RM Sotheby’s
Estimate: €190,000 – €240,000 ($280,000 – $350,000 Usd.)
Price realized: Auction on May 14

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Art Harvey
Art Harvey

It is a pleasure to share that ownership of my ’75 US spec Bora, #932 has been a very positive experience. – All collector prices are high, it’s not unique to the Bora. That’s just life. I would put the operating costs of a Maserati up against a Ferrari or Lamborghini any time, any place. They powered their cars with essentially the same V8 engine for two decades… – Build quality is robust, spare parts are in good supply, and systems are entirely rebuildable. – Taking it for a two-week 800 mile vacation to ME and NH with my 5-year… Read more »

Andrew Salt
Andrew Salt

Beautiful car. So 1970’s
Cracking read.
Thank you.

Flash
Flash

Maybe my view is a bit too simplistic, I come to this site because I love looking, reading, viewing other peoples passion for cars. Wouldn’t it be great if everyone could just sit back and enjoy the article, the car and the person – without having to add a negative type comment. Yeah, some cars may not be quite original, the wheels may not be to your liking, it might be expensive, it might be another Porsche. But you know, if I don’t like I just go to the next article/video etc. I think they are all great. So Petrolicious… Read more »

Thomas maine
Thomas maine

Beautiful car and nicely written article!
“This ZF five-speed Bora is said to drive wonderfully and only in need of a new caretaker—this is where you come in.”
I would love to come in but at the estimated price range it’s far out of my reach. I am more in the around 20k range and I guess most of your readers are. Of course, glamour sells and who wants to read stories about normal earthling’s cars all day but once in a while a meal a normal person can afford would be nice 😉

z3coupe3.0
z3coupe3.0

Andrew: Is it that much better or rarer than a Pantera ? Thanks, Fabrice

Marketplace Demo
Marketplace Demo

Fabrice, more than 7,000 Pantera were produced, but its production cycle was significantly longer than the short lived Bora.

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

” With brilliant colors, restored to new, and in top notch running condition, why would anyone buy a new Trident-adorned GT or SUV over this classic Maserati masterpiece? ”

The ludicrous and over inflated price tag
Pitiful build quality
The utter lack of reliability classic Maser’s are known for
The fact that it’ll barely get you there … coming back in one piece aint gonna happen
That cramped Italian ‘ Gorilla ‘ driving position of which classic Maser’s are the worst of the bunch

etc etc etc et al ad nauseam

Art Harvey
Art Harvey

Dear G.Slinger,
I like your colorful choice of words, but the “pitiful” content of your comments is “ludicrous and over inflated” which suggests an “utter lack” of knowledge, and thus a credibility that ranks among “the worst of the bunch”, when it comes to commenting on these cars. Cheers.

Simon Laudati
Simon Laudati

Wonderful.