Adam Levine Embroiled In Legal Battle Over Fake Maserati Ghibli

Classic Cars / 6 Comments

A lawsuit alleges that the pop star was sold a fake 1971 Maserati Ghibli Spyder.

Maroon 5 frontman and well-known gearhead Adam Levine claims that a prominent classic car dealership sold him a fake 1971 Maserati, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The Ghibli (not the underwhelming modern sedan) was reported to be an exceptionally rare Ghibli 4.9-liter Spyder. Levine reportedly traded two valuable Ferraris, a 1972 365 GTC/4 and a 1968 365 GTC, and $100,000 for the desirable Maserati back in December 2020.

Levine later found out the vehicle had a duplicate identification number ending in "1241." However, the Maserati with that actual VIN had been sold several years ago to renowned car collector Clive Joy. "The Real 1241 has been in Switzerland ever since as part of Clive Joy's collection," the lawsuit claims.

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The document says Levine is not in the classic car business and, therefore, trusted dealer Rick Cole when he claimed the car was genuine. Later, he discovered that the Maserati in question was removed from an auction in 2015 after people began questioning the vehicle's pedigree.

According to the document, the lawsuit alleges that the numbers imprinted on the chassis and engine were not original. The style and font also do not match those used by Maserati when the Spyder 4.9 was produced.

"The identity of the vehicle is, at the very least, in serious doubt," adds the lawsuit. "It is not the real #1241. It may be an original Ghibli Spyder in which [case] someone got a hold of the engine and then stamped the vehicle to try to match the engine."

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"Or, it could just be a converted Ghibli Coupe, in which the original chassis plate was removed and replaced with plate number AM11549S*1241* in an attempt to make the vehicle more attractive," reads the document.

The lawsuit alleges that someone tried to make the vehicle appear authentic to convince a buyer that it was an original example. The document also claims that the classic car dealer had originality documents signed by Maserati expert Fabio Collina. This paperwork was reportedly original for the actual 1241 that belongs to Clive Joy.

Just 25 or so examples of this rare drop-top were produced, making this a difficult car to duplicate. Cole and Levine declined the LA Times' invitation to comment.

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"The vehicle is not authentic, has no identity, and/or has a very questionable identity, which seriously undermines its value," adds the lawsuit.

Selling dealer Cole reportedly tried to prevent Levine's trust from selling the Maserati. The lawsuit noted that he "obviously feared that if the trust marketed the vehicle, it would eventually learn the truth concerning its lack of authenticity and [the] corresponding decrease in market value."

Unfortunately, scams involving classic and sports cars aren't uncommon. A few years ago, a prominent Porsche dealership employee defrauded customers out of unfulfilled orders. Shiraaz Sookralli, the former VP of marketing for the retailer in question, ran off with $2.5 million, leaving hopeful 911 owners in the lurch.

If the allegations are true, we sincerely hope Levine can at least get his gorgeous classic Ferraris back.

*The vehicle pictured here is for illustrative purposes only.

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