The Maserati Merak SS Is the Weirdest Maserati You've Never Heard of

There's one for sale on Bring a Trailer right now too.

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Does anyone remember the Maserati Bora, the V-8-powered two-seater supercar Maserati made in the late 1970s? If you're a fan of the whacky looks of Bora but can't come to terms with the ridiculous prices it sells for, there's an alternative.

It's called the Maserati Merak, and there's currently one for sale on Bring a Trailer. This is a 1981 Merak SS, the lighter and more powerful version with 217-horsepower, five-speed manual gearbox, and a more reliable hydraulic fuel pump. It's also one of 312 Meraks with the Bora's square dashboard and padded steering wheel. It's been well-serviced and the black paint is all original, matching the brown leather interior and period-correct Campagnolo wheels. 

It has 15,577 miles on the clock and its current bid is $30,000. Included with the purchase are all the original service books, owner's manual, and a new chin spoiler. The car been seen cruising around San Francisco here.

Like the Bora, the Merak was designed by Italdesign engineer Giorgetto Giugiaro and shared the entire front end with its sibling. However, the Merak's rear end wasn't a fastback design like the Bora, resembling a pickup truck bed with its flat, horizontal back concealing the engine bay. The Merak also went with a smaller 3.0-liter V-6, which added room in the cabin for rear seats. In a battle of practicality against the Bora, the Merak would win every time.