After the success of the 3500 GT, Maserati enlisted Pietro Frua to craft a fresh design for the updated Tipo 109 chassis, with Maggiora tasked to construct the coachwork. The outcome was the Mistral, a sleek two-seat coupe named after the brisk northern wind of Southern France. It marked Maserati’s final venture with the inline six-cylinder engine lineage originating from the 1950s 350S sports racer, closely linked to the powerplant of Fangio’s iconic Maserati 250F Formula One car.
Debuting at Turin in November 1963, the Mistral remained in production until 1970, undergoing minor updates along the way. Engine capacity grew from 3.5 to 3.7 liters, eventually reaching 4.0 liters, with Lucas fuel injection introduced later. A ZF five-speed manual gearbox connected to a Salisbury rear axle formed the quintessential Maserati drivetrain. Sporting leather seats and a refined driving position, the Mistral achieved a top speed nearing 160 mph, reaching 0-60 mph in just 6.2 seconds. A total of 828 Coupes and 125 open Spiders were manufactured, with the Coupe featuring a stylish and practical hatchback design.
Road & Track praised the Mistral, noting its conventional yet finely engineered components, resulting in a true Gran Turismo experience. They highlighted its spirited performance, capable of effortlessly burning rubber in lower gears yet maintaining predictable handling characteristics, offering a thrilling driving experience that demanded skill. With a price tag close to $15,000 at the time, its exclusivity rivaled that of contemporary Ferraris.