New decade, same Maserati. Despite the promise of the long-awaited Alfieri arriving later this year, the rest of the fabled manufacturer's line-up remains rather uninspiring. With the Gran Turismo recently retired and the Quattroporte no longer available with a V8, the marque has been reduced to finding simpler ways to keep its range in the headlines.
The Royale series may just be the latest in a long line of 'special edition' Maseratis, then, but is worthy of our attention because, well, it's mid January and the rest of the automotive world is still recovering from its New Year hangover. Paying tribute to a 1986 special edition of the Quattroporte - a machine which featured a blue and green colour scheme, luxury leather upholstery and extensive use of wood - the new limited-run trimline brings several of that car's defining themes up to date for modern customers.
While only 51 examples of that car were produced, Maserati needs to sell more than that in 2020, so will make 100 Royale'd Ghiblis, Quattroportes and Levantes respectively. The unique designation will be available on cars fitted with 3.0-litre V6 engines only - that's the 275hp diesel and 350hp or 430hp petrol units - and comes in a choice of two colours: Blu Royale and Verde Royale.
A set of 21-inch Anteo Staggered Anthracite or Titanium Anthracite rims will be available on the saloon cars, both with silver brake calipers. Wheel options for the Levante haven't yet been confirmed. Interiors are based on Maserati's GranLusso trim, and feature high Gloss inserts - Metal Net for the Levante, Ebony for the Ghibli and Black Piano for the Quattroporte - a special "One of 100" plate, Bowers & Wilkins sound system, electric sunroof and privacy glass.
Royale series cars also come equipped with several usually-optional packs as standard, including Cold Weather, Premium and Driving Assistance Plus, ensuring that "whether driving down city streets or taking part in an exclusive grand tour, high-powered luxury will be met with greater-than-ever safety on the road." Jolly good.
First deliveries are scheduled for March, with prices starting at £78,900 for the Ghibli, £103,150 for the Quattroporte and £85,300 for the Levante. Remember, though, only 100 of each will be produced no matter the demand, so if you prefer your Maseratis Royale then you'd best order now.