Like many Maseratis, the Mistral is named after a strong wind – in this case, a powerful little number that blows chilled air from southern France into the northern Mediterranean. Around 800 of these pretty Frua-bodied coupés were built over the seven-year production life. Some had alloy bodies, some steel, plus there were three different engines.
LBI Limited is offering one of the most desirable of the myriad combinations, this car being alloy-bodied and with the most powerful 4.0-litre twin-spark, twin-cam straight-six under the bonnet.
Not much is known about the early history of this example, other than the fact that it was a US-market car, sold through Foreign Car City of West Nyack, New York, in October 1967. Recently pulled out of long-term storage in Michigan, it hasn’t been on the road since 2009 according to its documentation. It comes to market as a project with lots of potential, either as a full restoration or something slightly more sympathetic to its originality.
A certificate of authenticity from Maserati confirms it to be wearing its original colour of Rosso Cordoba. Maserati Classiche also outlined the ex-works spec of the car, which includes optional electric power windows. It still has its correctly dated 6.5×15 Borrani wire wheels and, although in need of some light refreshment, they present well.
The bodywork appears to be largely original, although it has had a respray in that original colour at some point. It now looks a little the worse for wear in quite a few places, with cracking paint and signs of oxidation and bubbling underneath. Ultimately, it’s going to require a bare-metal repaint.
Inside, the interior is in surprisingly good condition, with the leather seats displaying a nice amount of patina. Some cleaning and a bit of gentle repair work could do wonders.
Although the engine hasn’t run, it does apparently turn freely by hand. Thankfully the original Lucas fuel injection system is present and complete, too. It’s difficult to rebuild, but almost impossible to replace if it is removed – as often happened in period.
It’s going to need a lot of recommissioning and it’ll take a fair bit of work, but this Mistral deserves a chance to be the force of nature its name suggests. lbilimited.com