Hot in the Lot: Mr. Ruggieri’s Maserati


by Colin Sullivan- 11/12



Lamborghini, Jaguar XK, Triumph TR6, and Corvette - Mr. Ruggieri has owned quite a few super cars over the years. However, none of these compare to his current sports car, a 2002 Maserati Spyder, an iconic convertible that was designed and built by Ferrari engineers and has an engine that will make your ears bleed. While is may not be as flashy as his previous Lamborghini, it is certainly just as fast and is by far one of the nicest cars ever to enter the DHS parking lot.


The History


In the 1960s and 1970s, Maserati was possibly the best sports car manufacturer in the world, producing cars that were almost always better than any Ferrari. By the 1990s, however, Maserati was near bankrupt and had not produced a good car in years. In 1993 Fiat, an Italian car company, bought out Maserati, and handed the task of creating its next car over to Ferrari, a company also owned by Fiat. After nearly a decade of work, the Maserati Spyder was introduced in 2002, the first of its class, and after just a year, it sold better than any Maserati before it, putting the company back on the map as a competitive Italian car manufacturer.


The Interior


dashboard steering wheel pedals

Despite being more than ten years old, the car looks brand new, having racked up only 7,000 miles. This means Mr. Ruggieri puts only about 700 miles on the car each year. Unlike traditional Maseratis today that are covered in chrome, the Spyder “has class without being super flashy.” The car is finished in dark blue and both the front and rear of the car are dominated by Maserati’s signature trident and cursive logo. Spyder, which means convertible in Italian, has a black soft top that can automatically be folded down and stored in the back with the press of a button. Inside, the car is dominated by hand stitched, black leather interior. The car only seats two, but does so in Italian luxury, with two bucket seats in the front.




The Exterior




The only down side to this sporty exterior is that whenever Mr. Ruggieri drives the car, he always gets a lot of people pointing and shouting at it. “One time for example, I pulled into a state park, and 50 to 60 people stared at me.” Even while conducting the interview in the parking lot, every passing car came to a stop near the Maserati and anyone who walked by would try to strike a conversation with us. While it may get annoying how everyone is always looking at the car, you still have to feel pretty cool when your behind the wheel, passing by hundreds of jealous viewers.





In Front of Car engine


side of car front of car


going up grill back12




Under the Hood

Under the hood, the car is powered by a Ferrari 4.2-liter V-8 that delivers 390 horsepower, 333 foot-pounds of torque, and a 0 to 60 speed of 4.9 seconds. This is the same engine that appeared in many Ferrari models at the time. The car has a top speed of around 175 miles per hour, which is incredible considering it is a ragged top. It comes standard with a six-speed automatic transmission, however, with a touch of a button, the car can be driven with the paddle shifters mounted on the steering column, allowing drivers to quickly shift between gears.

For those of you who do not understand these figures, just know that the car is fast. When on rout-106, Mr. Ruggieri says, “If I accelerate, I don’t care how fast those people are going this thing is going to blow those other cars away.”

Unlike Porsches, which according to Mr. Ruggieri, “sound like chainsaws,” The Maserati’s side of engine

eight-cylinder engine makes a loud and deafening roar that is sure to grab the attention of

anyone nearby.

In order for you to better understand the power and speed of the Maserati, lets compare it to a typical, blue-collar car, a 2012 Toyota Prius. The Spyder is five times more powerful, can accelerate 6 seconds faster to 60 mph, and has an engine that is about three times larger. I’d rather have the Maserati.







side engine trident


Previous Cars Owned by Mr. Ruggieri


It was actually Mr. Ruggieri’s wife who purchased all of their super cars. Not only was Mr. Ruggieri’s wife into cars, she was also “somewhat of an environmentalists,” and at the same time as she purchased her Maserati, a thirsty car that gets just around 12 miles per gallon, “she also purchased a Honda Civic which is a hybrid that gets around 40 miles per gallon.” Mrs. Ruggieri’s environmental concerns are also evident when looking at the custom, “Preserve the Sound” license plate.


Previously, Mr. Ruggieri and his wife have owned a Lamborghini, Jaguar XK, Triumph TR6, and Corvette (In order from left to right):


lambo jaguar


tr6 corvet1

Mr. Ruggieri’s Maserati is one of the four cars that he currently owns. He has only driven it to school once, and that was to conduct the interview with Neirad. And he probably will never drive it to school again, since leaving such an expensive car in a student parking lot is not always wise. Sadly, this means that car is usually collecting dust in his garage. The only time Mr. Ruggieri usually takes the car out is on the weekend, however, with his busy schedule and tutoring business, he lately has been unable to find time to drive it.



When our interview was over, the unexpected happened, Mr. Ruggieri asked if I would like to drive his Maserati, a car worth tens of thousands of dollars, is credited for bringing Maserati back into business, and is faster than many Ferraris. Withholding the information that I had just received my license a few weeks before, I hopped into the drivers seat and took off. While in the drivers seat, the eight-cylinder engine roared so loud that my ears nearly began to bleed, and the car lurched forward at tremendous speeds with just the slight tap of the pedal. The ceramic brakes were incredibly sensitive and the car would come to a complete stop with just the slightest tap. Just sitting behind the wheel of such a powerful car also makes you feel pretty cool.

The DHS parking lot looks like a sea of jeeps, and even though it was just for one day, Mr. Ruggieri’s 2002 Maserati Spyder added some nice needed speed and luxury to the lot. Neiard would like to thank Mr. Ruggieri for allowing us to feature such a nice car, and it is without doubt that his Maserati is the coolest car any student or teacher at DHS owns.


Liked this article? Check out this previous feature on a Mercedes Benz and Range Rover




Photo Credits:


( - Triumph TR6

( - Jaguar XK

( - Lamborghini

( - Corvette

( - Asphalt Background

( - Maserati Logo Background