Technical specification - BARCHETTA CORSA

Body type Barchetta da Corsa
Production years From 1991 to 1991
Engine Rear engined V 6 cylinder @ 90°
Bore and stroke 82 mm / 63 mm
Engine capacity 1996,2 c.c.
Compression ratio 7,6:1
Maximum power 315-bhp @ 7200 rpm
Distribution Four overhead camshafts, four valves per cylinder
Induction system Supercharged with two water-cooled IHI ball-bearing turbochargers/
two intercoolers and Weber Multi Point electonic injection
Ignition Single electronic
Lubrification Forced with full-flow filtering and cooler
Transmission Rear wheel drive
Differential Ranger® with cooler; final drive: 3,31:1
Clutch Single dry plate
Gearbox ZF 6-speed transaxle
Chassis Welded tubular backbone chassis. Body (constucted from a
mixture of aluminium honeycomb, carbon fibre and fibreglass layers) in three sections with front and rear removable shrouds.
The central tub providing seating and protection for two.
Front suspension:- Wide angle double wishbones with inboard coil
over shock-absorbers mounted to a magnesium
subframe bolted to the front of the chassis.
Rear suspension:- Wide angle double wishbones with inboard coil over
shock-absorbers mounted on the transmission casing.
Brakes Dual circuit non-servo brakes with balance bar and
massive four-pot calipers clamping vented discs.
Wheelbase 2514 mm
Wheel tracks Front 1610 mm    Rear 1580 mm
Wheels Marchesini alloys Front: 7"J x 18" / Rear: 8"J x 18"
Tyres Front:- 245/40 ZR 18    Rear:- 285/35 ZR 18
Dry weight 775 kg
Maximum speed Over 300 km/h
Models constructed

According to official figures 10 units of this model were produced. However there seems to be some doubt about the true numbers with claims that as many as 16 cars being made. Julien Appels, the 'Barchetta Guru', has through some extensive research confirmed 13 cars so far, including one 'Barchetta' that has replaced its 2.0-litre engine with the 2.8-litre engine.


The engine in the Barchetta was a pre-Ghibli 4-valve 2.0-litre engine. This meant that it still had a distributor and the earlier two ECU management system (Ghibli has four ECUs). This would make it on a par with cars like the 'Racing' and the 2.24v. It was tuned to produce the extra bhp electronically and so that it could sustain high revs was fitted with the roller bearing turbos which are only elsewhere found in the 'Ghibli Cup'.
The gearbox was a transaxle unit which was by ZF. However, recently 'Bill McGrath - Maserati' had had cause to strip a Barchetta gearbox and so I've been given a little scoop! Maserati folklore suggests that the box was a straight cut non synchromesh unit. It's not! In fact, it is a cleverly modified version of the Audi S2 gearbox (which was originally manufactured by ZF), helical gears and synchromesh throughout - though without the four wheel drive aspects of the S2! It is not mounted transversely however but in line with the engine.
The chassis was a unique tubular backbone with the fuel tank (a bag tank) in the middle of the backbone. The front suspension was mounted on a cast magnesium subframe on the front of the chassis and was pure racing double wishbones and inboard coil over shocks. The rear suspension was mounted on the engine and gearbox making them stressed members like a Formula One car and again was double wishbone and inboard shocks. Over the backbone was laid a carbon fibre tub and the composite bodywork made of a mixture of carbon fibre, aluminium honeycombe and fibreglass.
I noticed from your production figures that Sig Cozza refers to the car as a 'Pista'. All I can say is that the brochure for the car at the time called it Corsa. I guess that the two terms are as close in meaning in Italian as they are in English - circuit/race. I presume from Sig Cozza's figures that you are aware that the Stradale only existed as a mock up for the brochure and that this mock up is with Panini now. Also, the Barchettas were made at De Tomaso and not in the Maserati factory. It is an interesting exercise to compare the Maserati to the current De Tomaso 'Guara' as many components are shared - including the chassis, transmission and most of the suspension. Even the wheels are made by the same company - Marchesini.

My sincere appreciation to Andy Heywood of Bill McGrath and Julien Appels for their invaluable help.


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