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Maserati Marks 20 Years of the MC12 with MC20 Specials

by Nik Berg
19 June 2024 2 min read
Maserati Marks 20 Years of the MC12 with MC20 Specials

In 2004 Maserati made a dramatic return to racing with the MC12 GT1. After 37 years away from the track the Trident firm was aided by former rival-turned-stablemate Ferrari who provided the chassis from the Enzo and its V12 engine.

Maserati made major modifications, with Giorgetto Giugiaro designed bodywork that was significantly longer than the Ferrari’s for aerodynamic advantage. The six-litre engine featured gear-driven camshafts and its output was actually scaled back to 620 bhp for racing purposes. Nonetheless it was an immediate success, taking second and third places on its debut, and winning on its second outing. Unfortunately Maserati scored no points as the FIA had yet to homologate the MC12.

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When the paperwork was finally sorted Maserati dominated the 2005 World Championship. MC12 drivers won their championships in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009, and then took the 2010 GT1 titles for drivers and teams. The MC12 was also successful at home in the Italian GT Championship in Japan’ Super GT series and in American Le Mans.

Homologation requirements meant that Maserati also had to build 50 road-going MC12 Stradale editions. With a top speed of 205 mph and a 0-62 mph time of 3.8 seconds it was the fastest production car Maserati had ever made.

Now 20 years from its debut Maserati is celebrating the occasion with a pair of MC20 special editions, one inspired by the Stradale and the other by the GT1 car raced by the Vitaphone team, and 20 examples of each are to be built.

The Icona wears the same blue and white colors as the Stradale which in turn was influenced by both the Trofeo Light which ran at the the 24 Hours of Daytona in 2004, and the Type 61 Birdcage which had its heyday between 1959 and 1961. The Maserati Fuoriserie logo in Bianco Audace features just ahead of the rear wheels, and the Italian is proudly displayed on the door under MC20 lettering. Chrome painted wheels wear silver hubcaps with blue Trident logos and behind them you can see blue brake callipers.

The Leggenda is bolder still, wearing a green-black combo known as Nero Essenza and Digital Mint Matte–the same hues as featured by Vitaphone Racing in its dominant GT1. Nero Lucido black is used for the wheels and callipers. The Trident picked out in green on the center caps and yellow on the front grille.

Both editions get lightweight racing seats with their name embroidered in the headrests and colorways paired with their exterior liveries and carbon fiber trim. A Sonos Faber sound system is included, along with an electronic limited slip differential, suspension lift system and blind spot and rear cross path monitoring safety features.

Mechanically there are no modifications to the MC20 so you still get the three-litre twin-turbo Nettuno V6 motor with 630 bhp. That gives it the ability to out-drag the MC12 to 62 mph by almost a second, although its 202 mph top speed is still just shy of the 20 year-old legend it celebrates.

Should you wish to race a Maserati today then you’re in luck as the company is back on the grid with the MC20 GT2, as sampled by our own Henry Catchpole.

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