The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344

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Lot 248
1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé
Coachwork by Ital Design Chassis no. AM122A 1344

Sold for £ 64,220 (US$ 81,345) inc. premium
The ex-Abba
1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé
Coachwork by Ital Design

Chassis no. AM122A 1344

Footnotes

  • Cars associated with celebrities have always exerted a powerful attraction for collectors, and there can be few celebrities better known, or loved by their legions of loyal fans, than Abba. Formed in Stockholm, Sweden in 1972, the group took its name from the initials of the four members: Agnetha, Björn, Benny and Anni-Frid, and first sprang to prominence by winning the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with 'Waterloo'. They have since go on to sell some 380 million albums and singles worldwide, making them one of the most successful popular music acts ever. During 1975, the year the Merak was manufactured, the group released two of its best-loved singles: 'SOS' and 'Mamma Mia' as well as the self-titled album 'Abba'.

    The Maserati was purchased new in 1976 by Benny Anderson whose company, Harlekin, is recorded on the original registration papers (copy on file). Photographs of Abba with the Merak are reproduced in 'Abba – The Photo Book', a copy of which accompanies the car together with its original handbook. Not offered for public sale in the last 20 years, the Abba Merak is described as very original and in generally good condition, having been repainted in 1994. A total of 59,000 kilometres (approximately 36,600 miles) is currently displayed on the odometer.

    Launched in 1972, the mid-engined Merak was intended as competition for Ferrari's top-selling Dino 246 and used a stretched, 3.0-litre, 190bhp version of the four-cam V6 that had debuted in the Citroën SM. The French firm owned Maserati at the time so the Merak made use of the SM's transmission, power-operated all-disc braking and, more controversially, Citroën's quirky instrumentation, though this applied to left-hand drive cars only, right-hand drive examples using the more conventional fascia of the Bora. The unitary construction chassis, all-independent suspension and impeccable handling remained basically as the V8-engined Bora's, though the Merak offered the convenience of '+2' seating in the rear and superior all-round vision thanks to its distinctive rear 'flying buttresses'.

    Competition from Ferrari's new Dino V8 prompted the introduction of a more powerful version - the Merak SS with 220bhp engine and revised interior - for 1975, ZF transmission being adopted shortly after. Widely recognised as one of the finest, if not the finest, of contemporary V6s, the Merak SS engine proved smooth, powerful and capable of delivering its urge over a surprisingly wide range for such a high performance engine. Like any true thoroughbred, the Merak possessed handling commensurate with its breathtaking acceleration and 150mph maximum speed. 'Performance and handling are the raison d'être of a mid-engined sports car, and the Merak's astounding cornering power is a match for its straight-line punch,' observed Motor magazine.

    Changes made to the SS suspension greatly improved ride comfort over that of the original Merak, while alterations to the instrumentation, switch gear, and interior, and the phasing out of the Citroen brakes in favour of a more conventional system addressed some of the criticisms levelled at the earlier version. The most successful Maserati of its day, the Merak ceased production in 1983 after 1,832 had been built, 626 of them the SS version.
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The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
The ex-Abba,1975 Maserati Merak SS Coupé  Chassis no. AM122A 1344
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