My 222 isn't feeling very well.
Can you help? Please!

Any owner having a problem with their Maserati can send me details and I will publish these, together with any subsequent advice I receive, on this page.

Just drop me a line at


Even if I don't succeed in helping you with your problems; and I do try, it would help other Maserati owners a great deal if you could let me know how you managed to solve your problems. THANK YOU!


Daren in the UK writes:



I own a 1989 222 E 2.8-litre. When I start my car, up go the revs from between 800 rpm and 1,200 rpm every two seconds, and, if left alone will stall.

The exhaust gases are very strong, i.e. they make my eyes water.

Can you please tell me if one of the sensors have broken and of so, which one?




Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 E idling problems:

"This is most likely to be a failure of the water temperature sensor for the fuel injection which is a small brass sensor with a blue plastic top fitted into the top of the thermostat housing. If it fails, it gives the fuel injection the wrong signal and it believes, usually, that the engine is cold all the time and therefore increases the mixture and idle to suit. Pull the wiring connector from the top of the sensor – if it has failed there will be no change in engine note. If there is, then sometimes the brown air temp sensor in the same area also fails. Changing the sensors is straightforward. Andrea."


Yves in France writes:


"Hi Enrico,

Thanks for your excellent Maserati site, the best I know.

I have still starting problems after a mechanical check by the Biturbo-Club of Germany.

What they had done:

- check on computer.

- change and set timing belt.

- set valve clearance.

- trying to change everything possible ( any sensors, OT, idle, etc...).

After 10 days the guys told me they try everything, called some specialits in Europe, included someone called Campana in Italy (should be a real good mechanic). I pay good money for no real results, the car runs well when started ... but starting is still very bad.

One Maserati garage in Switzerland took the compressions ... bad on 4 cyl. and tell me it should be the valves clearances or some valves are dead............

Now the job on valve is done ... and the guys told me it's still and compression problem.

My knowledge on mechanics is that if the rings or the pistons are so bad I should have other signs like smelly oil ( fuel in the oil), smoke (oil in chamber), oil in air filter, ect...

May be you can help me or give some tricks to do to check what's the real problem.

I never heard about used pistons/ring in a Maserati engine with such low mileage, 62,000.Kms

Thanks for all.



Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 starting problems:

"The query below is a bit tricky. I agree that a) it is unusual for piston problems to occur at such low mileage and b), if there were such a problem, it would manifest itself in other ways. It does not say exactly which car this is. I would like to follow this one if you can get more info on the exact spec of the car and what the compressions are, plus more detail on what work has been done already.




Reply from Yves


Re: 222 starting problems:

"Hi Enrico,

At first thanks for your interest ...

I'll try to give you more infos.

The car is an 222 from 1990 2.0 L from Itlay with 61959 kms.

The compression are:

Cyl 2+3+4+5 : 4.5 bars
Cyl 1+6 :6.5 bars

shown on the diagram given to me by the garage.

Work done:

Air filter
Ignition wires
OT sensors
Fuel filter
and some gaskets and pipes replaced.

What had been controlled/checked:

-Valve clearances adjustment --- ok
-Belt changed
-CO test and adjusted --- ok
-Fuel regulator tested -- ok

What had been tr1ed:

-Absolute pressure sensor changed --- no results
-Fuel regulator changed -- no results
-Management units changed -- no results
-all Sensors on admission pipe changed/checked -- no results
"No results" meens the engine still starts bad.

Again, Enrico, the car drive well when running with full power and the idle is ok, no smokes, no really smells fuel (only if a try to start more than 4-5 times).

What can I try more to be sure that the compressions are to only problem and where the compression is going ?!... remanufacturing the engine is to expensive for me at moment.

thanks for your help.

Kind regards,



Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 starting problems:

"OK. These compression figures are too low and ARE bad enough to make starting difficult but they should also make the engine idling poor as well. I would ask an independent garage to carry out a cylinder leakage test to fill the cylinders with compressed air so that any leak can be traced to either a valve leaking, a head gasket fault or a piston/piston ring fault. Once you have those figures, you should be able to tell what is going on. Let me know!



Reply from Yves


Re: 222 starting problems:

"Hi Enrico,

Thanks for replying.

I'll do the test with compressed air.

If the leak is on pistons/rings I should identify this where I fill oil.

If the valves leak, I should identify this in the cam box.

If the leakage is from the cylinder head gasket, I should have air in the water circuit.

Is this all correct in your opinion.

It would be helpful to confirm how I can identify the leakages, because I want to be present by testing to be 100% sure.




Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 starting problems:

"Hi Yves, When testing for leaks with compressed air, you should:

If the leak is from the pistons/rings I should identify this where I fill oil - YES. Check the oil filler pipe.

If the valves leak, I should identify this in the cam box - YES. But with the valves, you can check for inlet valve problems through the turbo hoses and for exhaust valve in the exhaust pipe.

If the leakage is from the cylinder head gasket, I should have air in the water circuit - YES. Check the header tank.



Steph in France writes:


"Hi man,

I have a 222 Biturbo 1990 (2-litre), and every time I decelerate (3rd gear to 2nd) with the air conditioning turned on the engine stop.

This appears specially when I am driving in town, in open road there no particular trouble.

Could you help me ?

Thank in advance for your help and explanation.



Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 'keeps stopping!':

"Try cleaning the earth connection between the battery lead and the body. If that doesn’t work, clean or replace the idle control valve.



Willem in the UK writes:


"Dear Sir,

Please advise me where I can get Maserati front shock absorbers reconditioned ?

Many thanks,



Laslo in Hungary writes:



This is Laszlo Sebestyen from Hungary. I have been owning a '88 222 for 6 years and luckily did not have too many problems with my baby. There are some and when I found this page just taking the chance to ask.

1/When I bought the car after while had to realize that the exhaust gas mixture was terrible. Finally we had found the rason the former owner wanted to maks a tuning and they replaced the eprom in ECU.I contacted him but he don not have the original one anymore. How can I get one??? Or write one with original software.

2/ When I accelerate form standing position there is a short vibration at rear axle or differential maybe.

Thank you,

Kindest regards,



Julien in Switzerland writes:



I just purchased a very nice '89 222E and there are some things I want to correct:

* There is a vibration (bearing type) in the transmition when I accelerate from low revs (about 2000rpm). It happens in every gear, altough it seems more audible in 3rd; 4th and 5th. I assume it's not the diff as it doesn't seem to leak. It doesn't seem to be a wheel bearing 'cos the sound doesn't change when I turn.

* The car has a nice acceleration in low revs, but seems to calm down when I approach 4500rpm, and I smell fuel inside the car after each strong acceleration. Do you have any idea where could be the fuel leak, is there a common leak?

Thanks in advance for the input and congratulations for your site.



GAIA from Germany, I think, writes:



I have problems again with my 1991 222 Kat. 55,000km.

When driving in slow traffic the car starts to shake slightly forward - backward (just like a Kangaroo!) all the time.

I dont know the exact words for this behavior. It's like the ignition goes forward-backward all the time, or the fuel mixture changes all the time.

IT starts at around 1500 rpm to 3000rpm. Its only on nearly no load condition.

Full load and idle is OK.

I changed all Ignition wires. No change.

I Checked all fittings on the intake plenum and on the injectors with petrol (start) spray, there is no leak.

The car has new ASU ( emission control including lambda test)."


Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 'kangaroo!':

"I think you mean that the revs rise and fall at idle? In which case, the most likely cause is the idle control valve on the plenum chamber. This could be removed and cleaned with carburettor cleaner first to see if it works. Otherwise a new one will be required.

Regards Andrea."


Reply from GAIA


Re: 222 'kangaroo!':

"Hallo Enrico,

Thank you Andrea for your answer.

Its not in IDLE . Its around 2000 - 3000rpm.

I have solved the problem by replacing the Lambda Sond.



Vincent in France writes:



I have a 222 and I have a question in rapport of the engine.

When I change gear and RPM goes up there is a little bit of white smoke from the exhaust.

I have second problem with the two intercoolers (air/air) of the turbo where there is an oil leakage.

Do you think that it comes from the turbo?

Are they dead? That will explain why I have oil in circuit of air and white smoke at the exhaust when I change down.

Has anyone have experiences of this problem?

Thanks in advance.



Reply from Mike


Re: 222 white smoke:

"Hello Enrico,

In my experience the oil in the pipe is a sign that the turbos are on their way out. The white smoke is also to do with excessive oil being burnt which is also a sign that the turbo is leaking.

Please contact me if there is anything else I can do?

Regards Mike."


Vincent in France writes:



First congratulations for your very interesting web site.

I have a 222 / 1989.

1/ I have heard some noise when I change gear. This comes from the differential because there is no Loctite between the joint and pinion.

See below the picture, they talk about Loctite AVX 13805/6, do you know this kind of product. I asked directly to Loctite they don’t know the reference. I think this is a Maserati reference. Can anyboby help me ?

2/ I have to change my suspension back and front. But I hear that the price is very expensive by Maserati. I also heard that there is a company in England who are able to rebuild the suspension using the old one. Do you have some information our can you help me ?




Reply from Andrea


Re: 222 differential:

"1/ The Loctite product you need is now known as ‘275’.

2/ Don’t know what you mean. There is nobody in the UK doing this, unless you mean supplying second hand parts. MIE in the USA do a kit for the early suspension which is cheaper than Maserati original (i.e. for four bolt wheels).



Alejandro Jose in Morocco writes:


"Hello Mr Enrico...

I'm having trouble with a 1989 Maserati 222 Biturbo coupe 2.0L ... it's been in the car shop for about 6 or 7 months now and the still CAN'T get it fixed in this country.

They fixed the engine part and the car works.. but not properly... It loses a lot of compression once its on .. the mixture of air and gas is horrible.. you can only turn it on when the blue cable sensor is in .. but once it is on you have to remove the light blue cable.. of the water sensor .. its extremly wierd.

Once the car is started and running you accelerate it all you want but it has a really really delayed response.

One more thing that I can remember.. the return passage of the gasoline we blocked it and the car GAINED POWER it's like if we block this it's GOOD if we don't it will just stay bad and even shut off...

In the car shop they tell me .. it could be the Magnetti Marelli ECU but I dont want to waste 2000 dollars buying a new one.. when that's not the problem and the mechanic .. told us that he cannot guarantee that this will fix the car.

Could you please help me.. ?!

Thanks so much for your time.

Alejandro Jose."


Reply from Andy


Re: 222 problem:

"Difficult to know what your mechanic has actually done already and some more history on why it went into the shop in the first place may help, but if the water temp sensor has to be disconnected to keep the engine running, it is probably over fuelling and you should renew this sensor then try again. It is VERY unlikely that the ECU is the cause of your problem as these are reliable parts.



Alejandro Jose in Morocco writes:


"Mr. Enrico...

The history of the car goes like this.. one day .. went to the gas station .. told them to put 30 euros.. in .. and they only put.. 3.. i did not check .. the gas gauge and i ran out of gas.. and then the car just lost compression it choked we can say .. and then it shut off .. after that i realized that one of the valves hit the top and made the im unsure of the name in english its empaquetadura in spanish.. the strong carboard like material thats when the engine overheats it breaks.. well i had to change that. thats the only thing that my mechanics.. fixed the engine.. works perfect though i know for a fact that that is not the problem .. the water temp sensor .. the light blue one.. we did buy a new one..for it.. and its still having the same problem of has no good energy ... but one of the mechanics.. checked the cable that hooks up the sensor which is also color blue he hooked up 2 random unconnected cables he found in his box just to see what happens and it stalled.. its like its not the sensor .. but it seems to be the hook up TO the sensor.. im sorry im having a real hard time trying to explain..

In this garage we got the car.. the only thing they said.. after he "fixed" everything else. is that it could be the ECU... and that his friends were going to italy and that i should pay for this trip and they would take the ECU for reprogramming.. i belive all he wants is extra cash for this.. and im sick and tired of people trying to take advantage.. and there is no one.. around here that can possibly help me with this problem.

Please if there is anything else you need to know, just tell me I'll explain anything.. or attempt ..

Please do your best to help me !

Thank for your time.

Alejandro Jose."


Reply from Andy


Re: 222 problem:

"If you are sure the water temp sensor is good, change the air temp sensor (the brown sensor). If you have already done this, please answer the following questions:

Has a compression test been done on the engine since the head gaskets were replaced? If so, what were the figures?

Have the valve clearances been checked and within tolerance?

Has the valve timing (cam belt) been checked since the head gaskets were replaced?

If your mechanic is happy that all of the above are correct, then please confirm the following:

Will the engine run at idle speed for long periods, even if it is rough, or does it just cut out?

Can you therefore check the Carbon monoxide reading in the exhaust and let me know the reading when cold and then when hot?




Arthur in Australia writes:



I have a 222 4V with a bit of a problem. The 4V in the 2.8 litre model was a very limited series and only 3 examples of this model made it to Australia. So in the hope that someone out there knows the answer I would like to pose a question.

My car is a little bit flat on the power so I have done some investigation as to why this is the case. Apparently the 4V 2.8 model came with the same engine as the Ghibli but without a static ignition system. The programming for the e-prom in the engine management system had a fault (it didn't transition correctly from cold to warm operation) which was corrected but putting in a chip from a different model, the end result of which was a loss of power.

Being such a rare model here in Australia it is difficult to find out whether the above is in fact the situation. If it is the case then the question is - is there a fault free chip for the 2.8 4V that could give the car the exra grunt that it should have?





George in Denmark writes:



I have a Maserati 1992 222 SR, 165kw, 18V, 2.8-litre.

My question is if somebody can help me with my power steering servo from TRW?

I can't find parts for it or used one.

Thank you,



Reply from Enrico


Re: 222 used parts:

"Hi George,

"I refer to the reply I gave some moments ago!"




Milutin in Serbia writes:


"Hallo Andy,

I bought 222 SR with 2.0-litre engine in parts and I need some parts more to complete rebuild, and because I live in Serbia, I am not able to find that so can you help me find the parts I need:

- gasket set (all gaskets including head gasket)

- tensioner

- belts

- bearings

or can I find complete engine 2.8 or 2.0-litre




Reply from Enrico


Re: Biturbo spare parts:

"Hi Milutin,

Here is a list of Maserati parts suppliers:


Bill McGrath Maserati - Hertfordshire England  +44 1438 832161
Meridien-Modena - Hampshire England  +44 2380 283404
Auto Shield - Manchester England  +44 161 881 3463
Giuseppe Candini - Modena Italy  +39 059 828280
Ferasin Automobili - Padova/Vicenza  Italy  +39 059 828280  
Carrozzeria Campana - Modena  Italy  +39 059 828280
MIE Corporation - Auburn, WA  USA  +1 253 833 2598
Bill McGrath Maserati - Hertfordshire England  +44 1438 832161
David Askew - Leicestershire England  +44 1455 202325
Eurospares - Essex England  +44 1787 473678
Auto Shield - Manchester England  +44 161 881 3463
Giuseppe Candini - Modena Italy  +39 059 828280
eBay Auction Website Internet


Miguel in Spain writes:


"Dear Andy,

I have noticed my 222 SE is leaking some water somewhere under the left-hand side cylinder head. I haven´t seen it it's coming from the gaskets or maybe I have a damaged hose. Currently I cannot crank the engine, since it starts leaking as soon as I fill the reservoir.

What do you think I should check first? Have you heard of similar cases?

Thanks again.



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