Italian concept cars of the 1970s were how the future was supposed to look. It’s the era that brought us the 1973-1990 Lamborghini Countach, the Lancia Stratos Zero Concept, the Lancia Sibilo concept and Pininfarina’s 1970 Ferrari 512S Modulo concept (Marcello Gandini designed all of these with the exception of the Ferrari). Add the 1972 Maserati Boomerang by Giugiaro to that list. The sole example will cross the auction block at the Bonhams event in September in Chantilly, France.

Originally shown at the Turin Motor Show in 1971 as an epowood mockup, the Maserati Boomerang wears a futuristic body penned by Giorgetto Giugiaro. It was designed shortly after he co-founded Italdesign Giugiaro, following stints at both Bertone and Ghia. It later reappeared at the 1972 Geneva Motor Show as a fully functional car built on the chassis of the Maserati Bora.

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Several years after its unveiling, Giugiaro said he designed the Boomerang “...almost exclusively with a ruler,” which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, but he was also somewhat critical of his own design, saying too much emphasis was placed on “graphic shapes,” and that aerodynamics should have been more of a priority. He’s probably being a little too hard on himself here, because the Boomerang is a jaw-dropping thing to behold.

It retains its original Bora running gear under the unique body: a mid-mounted, 4.7-liter V-8 producing around 300 horsepower producing a claimed top speed of 186 mph. The interior is as futuristic as the outside. The steering wheel rotates around a circular gauge cluster, and the austere dash is decked-out with charming 1970s-era tech.
Maserati continued to show the Boomerang at car shows until 1974, when it was sold to a Spanish owner. A German car collector then purchased it after finding it while on vacation in Spain in 1980, and later had it approved for road use in his home country. It was reunited with Mr. Giugiaro 10 years later, who signed its rear panel. It was then sold by Christie’s in 2002 for the equivalent of $812,000 and later in 2005 for $880,000.

Why it matters

Given the Boomerang’s one-off status and the fact that rare Italian supercars are skyrocketing in value right now (some call it a bubble, but it seems like we’ve been waiting for it to burst for about five years), I wouldn’t be surprised to see its hammer price exceed $2 million. Watch this space to find out.

Maserati Boomerang Concept Will Be Auctioned In September Exterior
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James Wolfcale
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Press Release

A signature concept car of the 1970s, the Maserati Boomerang was a one-off prototype unlike anything seen before. Using geometric shapes and ruler straight lines, its angular style made a strong statement at the 1971 Turin Motor Show. Now the Boomerang is set to cause a stir once again as a highlight lot of Bonhams 5 September Chantilly Sale.

Philip Kantor, Bonhams European Head of Motoring, said: "The Boomerang was the first car of its time to create such a strong, angular style statement. It’s considered by many to be one of the most remarkable designs of the 20th century and the ’grandfather’ to the Volkswagen Golf Mk 1. The Boomerang has been shown at many world-class events including exhibitions and concours d’élégance such as Villa d’Este and Pebble Beach, and is now offered at Bonhams first ever sale in Chantilly."

First unveiled at the 1971 Turin Motor show, the Boomerang was also exhibited at the 1972 Geneva Motor Show, this time transformed to a fully operational vehicle. Developed over the chassis of the Maserati Bora, the Boomerang boasted an impressive 300bhp, and a top speed of 300km/h. With the V8 engine, the Boomerang took the best of Maserati mechanics and combined it with the imagination of Giorgetto Giugiaro. These elements created a fully functional, one-of-a-kind masterpiece.

Giugiaro was discovered by Fiat Technical Director, Dante Giacosta, who, impressed by the artist’s work at art school, offered him a chance to join Fiat’s Styling Office. In 1959, four years later and at the age of 21, the talented Giugiaro was offered a position as manager of the Bertone Design Center, where he honed his craft by creating designs for the likes of Aston Martin, Jaguar, Ferrari, and Maserati – this grounding later lead to the innovative design of the Maserati Boomerang.

Still in working order and fully road registered, the Maserati Boomerang is offered at Bonhams Chantilly Sale, taking place on 5 September at Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille, held in Chantilly, France. For further information, visit Bonhams website:"

Entry to Bonhams Chantilly Sale is by catalog purchase only. To purchase a catalog, please visit the Bonhams website.

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