Intermittent Daily Podcast: Maserati Warning Light

Justin Berkowitz
by Justin Berkowitz

Engineer A: How’s testing on the Merak going?

Engineer B: The brakes catch fire all the time.

Engineer A: Put in a warning light.

Engineer A: Make it big.

Justin Berkowitz
Justin Berkowitz

Immensely bored law student. I've also got 3 dogs.

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  • Like.a.kite Like.a.kite on Dec 18, 2008

    That is pretty funny, that picture. Funnier when it was "brakes keep fucking up." Thank you for sharing! It's dumb how the last numbers on the gauges are each reversed so as to be still legible. Because of such I would probably not drive this car.

  • Nicodemus Nicodemus on Dec 18, 2008

    Might have been worthwhile researching this one a bit more. Meraks and for that matter contemporary Citroens and Rolls Royces employed Hydropnematic braking systems which depend on a charge in an accumulator to work. The accumulator is fed from a pump, which is fed from the engine. So in the event of the engine being off the vehicle has a store of about 20 applications before failure. The light warns that the accumulator is no longer being fed and is running on reserve, so it would be wise to pull over. It does not typically mean that the system has failed totally. In fact Citroens and rollers and presumably these Masers, have quadrupal redundency in the braking system.

  • Nonce Nonce on Dec 18, 2008

    Does anyone have a clip from The Simpsons where Marge's dashboard lights up BREAKS CUT?

  • Durishin Durishin on Dec 18, 2008

    @Nicodemus Not all Meraks ran that system. The one I drove didn't. Easiest way to tell was the brake pedal. The Hydropneumatic system had a mushroom kind of pedal that stuck out from the floor and felt weird as heck when you used it. My uncle's SM had that (THAT was a car). The Meraks in the US had a standard hydraulic brake system (probably they learned from the SM AND Ralph Nader was floating around over here; Ralph still floats around here, albeit in a higher orbit than before). What I remember most about the Merak was that it had this absolutely silken clutch uptake. Smooth as my GF's (baby brother's) behind. I have never driven anything with that smooth a clutch since. Here's the brake pedal in an SM with the hydro-pneumo system (that black button next to the loud pedal on the floor): Here's the fresnel light (this is in an SM, which shared interior w/ the Merak):