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I have decided to trade in my Benz AMG for a Maserati; My only requirements are that it be a convertible.

Questions:

1] How much fun is the car with a paddle shifter? Am I better off buying the GT?

2] I am flexible as to what year the car is; I go thru 2-3 cars a year. I have heard that there is a signifigant difference between an 02 and the 03/04 models. I see there is at least one member that has owned both. Can someone please comment on the chassis, transmission differences or anything else you feel may be signifigant. Am I better off buying the 03 because of the differences?

3] Market prices for new and used Spyders are all over the place. One dealer is offering a nicely equipped 04 for under $85,000. I am leaning towards an 02 or 03 to cut cost because I won't keep the car longer than 6 months. I see 02's with 10k on the dash selling for as much as 03 dealer demos untitled with 3k. Any comments?

4] I love hp. Tubi exhaust: how much $? How is the sound? does it add HP? Will a K&N air filter make any HP differences?

5] Reliability: Any serious problems or issues?

6] Please tell me anything you think may be helpful to my purchsase.

I will be visiting the local Maserati dealer in Philly sometime over the next week to test drive; I really do appreciate any imput at all. I have found similar forums to be very helpful in guiding me prior to buying other cars.

Please post or email me.

Regards,

Scott
 

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Eas1,
Some comments:

1) This is my first F1 style transmission and I love it. I didn't think I would, but I do. Lot of fun. Couldn't imagine one in a 427 Shelby Cobra, but in the Maserati it fits/performs/integrates well. Will also add to value.

2) '03's have upgrades worth considering. For me the glass rear window and reduced cowl shake sold me. '02's are value priced, however. Specifics are all over this website, the choice is up to you.

3) Under 6 months? long term durability isn't an issue for you. Depreciation is, but if this is your habit, you are no stranger to depreciation. I can't imagine that for such a short period of time you would get added enjoyment from an '03 or '04.

4) Tubi - all sound as far as I can tell, worth every penny. $3k roughly

5) Zero problems for me.

6) Drive one and you will be sold. Drive all competitor vehicles you are considering first, then drive the Maser. Bring checkbook with you to save you a trip.

Best of Luck.
 

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1. I went with GT as I had my M3 SMG for two years and felt like I wanted to go back to a 3rd pedal. I am sure it's a good system and if you have not driven this type of transmission you should give it a shot and if you don't like it, you are only keeping for 6 months anyway. I find the shifting on my GT excellent .And I actually feel my car might hold value a little better as Maserati seems to building about 90% Cambio so when I go to sell car there will always be people looking for a GT but supply will be low
2. Going with a convertible, 03 or 04 only option. Stiffer chassis, less cowl shake and a glass rear window
3. I only paid slightly higher than that for a loaded 04. Maserati very fun car to personalize with ordering.
4. My Tubi cost $2850 installed and is worth ever penny amazing sound. I think Brad said he got about 7hp increase at rear wheels. Not sure about the K&N. Also try one of those power chips listed here with 20hp gain
5. Have driven car every single day in the almost 4 months owned and not a single issue.
6. Just get one. I also go thru cars pretty quickly about every two years and can honestly say I have never had this much fun with a car or have had a car that gets complimented just about everyday
 

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Scott,
Must say, that's a great pic. Even Ferrari couldn't pull off a color like that, your Maser looks stunning...

Forgot to tell Eas1 how hard the color decisions are when ordering...
 

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I met up with a couple of people this weekend, Were a few Ferraris, a Lamborghini and Z06 and someone snapped a few pictures and posted them on F-chat. I really liked the way my color looked compared to the ones I posted here earlier taken with a crappy camera. By the way Andrew what happened to our picture section?
 

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Good comments thus far. I'll throw in my $0.02 as well:
1. I have an 02 CC paddle-shifter and love having something different. Latest software updates make a big improvement (Maser will do it for free).

2. About the only things the dealer cannot upgrade on the 02's is the chassis and rear window. The cowl shake is largely cosmetic (doesn't appear to have an affect on handling), but it received so much attention on the car sites that the 02 may be a little harder to sell.

3. As I commented in another thread, we're seeing a fair number of one-owner cars hitting the market. Very few multiple owners or high-mileage units. Therefore, we have a very skewed picture of predictable depreciation on these cars. From your description, your safest bet may to find one of those sub-$10K 03's that have had the initial price scrubbed off.

4. After changing to a Tubi, the dyno showed about 7RWHP on my car. Even if it were zero, the Tubi would be worth it. Since there is some resonance below 3,000 RPM, you might want to stop by a dealer to test drive one equipped with a Tubi. With such low production numbers, I'll bet HP tricks will always be hard to find for the 4.2 engine. One that is available is the Powerchip, but I've not spoken to anyone who tried it.

5. We've had zero problems with our Spyder. A few manufacturing niggles, but no reliability problems.

6. You better plan on being noticed in this car. Even on the shortest trip I have people doing U-Turns and chasing me to see the car. EVERY trip to the store or gas station results in someone coming up to talk about the car. The Tubi simply adds more people to the mix because they can't believe the awesome sound.

Overall, I think there are other cars that are more visually pleasing (I think the Spyder is too big in the hips and overall is too conservative). Looked at it from a sexist perspective, buying a Spyder is like the young man who picks up the average-looking chick at the dance, only to find out she exudes sensuality and rocks his world. He's the envy of men everywhere.

This car strikes a chord with the general public. The name, the mystique, the styling, the GT luxury, and the sound just make it irresistable. Try one and see if you get the same results!
 

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Brad makes an interesting comment:

Overall, I think there are other cars that are more visually pleasing (I think the Spyder is too big in the hips and overall is too conservative). Looked at it from a sexist perspective, buying a Spyder is like the young man who picks up the average-looking chick at the dance, only to find out she exudes sensuality and rocks his world. He's the envy of men everywhere.
My last car was a Viper and I couldn't go ANYWHERE without people waving, talking, screaming, begging for a ride, staring, flashing :wink: etc. etc. At first I liked the attention, but soon grew weary when small scratches started to appear on doors and hand prints on windows, and people altering their speeds on the roads to get a better look or attempt to entice me to race.

Comparitively, my experience with the Maserati is a bit different. I still get the looks, but not the 'passionate' responses. I think many people see the bright red convertible and appreciate it for face value, not knowing it's a Maserati. Frequently I notice people slowing slightly to find out what kind of car it is by looking at the rear valence, or simply asking. I can attest, however, that with the Tubi, firing it up at a gas station turns every head.

I wish the car had a sportier design, especially the rear, but I do value a greater extent of perceived privacy.
 
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