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Discussion Starter #1
Dear Membership,

My '02 Coupe's battery has apparently died. Given a July production date, the battery is now 4 years old, so I don't mind replacing it. I'm wondering if there are any aftermarket options, such as Optima, DieHard, etc. Unfortunately, I've learned that many of the manufacturer websites don't list Maserati as a search option, but often offer a product for our car neverthless. The only specs I can see on the front decal are 74 Ah, 440A IEC, and 400A DIN. Any ideas? I suspect if I'm not the first, many are soon to follow in the need for a new battery. Thanks.

Frankie P
 

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Discussion Starter #2
The rest of the Battery Story

Dear Membership,

I'm replying to my own post essentially to save you hours of time and hassle when it comes time to replace your stock battery. Here's what I learned after two days of research/phone calls.

The aftermarket batteries that WILL work in our cars are:

Optima Model 34R (red top)

Interstate MT 34R

Note, neither of these batteries are vented, as our OE battery is. After speaking with the service department at a well established authorized Maserati dealer, they indicate that they use the Interstate battery as the official replacement, knowing full well they are not vented. They indicate that since the battery is in the trunk, not in the passenger compartment, the venting is really unecessary. Apparently, Ferrari vents all their batteries and that design was unnecessarily carried into the Maserati.

Also note that the, "R," designation in the model numbers above indicates reverse polarity of the terminals. You will note that our batteries have the negative terminal on the left. The standard design places it on the right. Given the short leads to the car, you cannot simply rotate a standard design battery 180 degrees when installing it, as the positive terminal lead may not reach the battery terminal. Better to just get the reverse polarity model battery.

Both these batteries satisfy the 700 CCA (cold cranking amps) required by the Maserati Coupe according to the operating manual's specifications.

Apparently, the, "Group size," of our battery is 34. There may be other reverse polarity, 34 group size, 700 CCA batteries out there. These are simply the two that I identified. I went with the Interstate as nobody in the Naples/Ft. Myers area had the Optima model. Installation was uneventful and we are back up and running. I left the vent tube unplugged and in the vicinity of the terminals so that there was some access to fresh air in the battery compartment.

I hope this information is helpful.

Frankie P
 

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Just out of curiosity how much did the battery and installation run. The Maserati dealer here said that the cost to check out the charging system and replace the battery would be around $400.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Dear Brian,

The price of the Interstate MT34R was about $78.00. I installed it myself, as I am about two hours away from the closest Maserati dealer. It was a snap, about as easy a job we will ever do ourselves on our Maseratis. It took about 15 minutes. Good Luck.

Frankie P
 

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Thanks for the information Frankie, very useful for future reference!
 

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Thanks Frankie. I can vouch that the Interstate is used as "official" replacement at genuwine Maserati dealerships. Mine started life in Colorado and the winter must have taken its toll. I noticed on the drive home to California that the Info Center would indicate "Low Bat" whenever the AC was switched on. Eventually the warning would go off and things would return to normal function.

Believing that the battery wasn't holding a charge I had it replaced and FMSV used an Interstate.

Oddly enough after replacement the new battery exhibited the same symptoms. I found out that "this is normal behavior". Apparently they DESIGNED the electrical system to shut down when it overtaxes the battery/alternator, and resume operation once everything is back up to snuff.

I'm wondering if one of the hi capacity Optimas (assuming it meets the other specifications) used in the cars that go boom might not be a better solution.
 
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