Maserati Birdcage

1959 – 1965
In a moment of strong recession in the late 50s, engineer Giulio Alfieri, Maserati’s chief technician, didn’t give up and had to come up with something truly innovative to compete: that’s how the design of the Tipo 60 came to life, a new sports racer destined to carve a place for itself in motor racing history. The car first competed in Italy and was successful for many years. Its unusual appearance could be traced to its chassis. Maserati looked into building a monocoque structure, but they discarded the idea due to a surprisingly time-consuming design process and their lack of familiarity with such technology, which was foreign to Italian sports car manufacturers. It was Alfieri who bridged the gap by designing a tubular trellis-like structure, developing and perfecting existing prototypes. The structure was made of 200 small tubes with diameters of 10, 12, and 15 mm, arranged in triangular formations and reinforced in high-stress areas, all welded to each other in the shape of a grid that looked like a giant birdcage: that’s why the Tipo 60 will always be remembered as The Maserati Birdcage.

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