It’s no secret that Maserati’s line up is in dire need of updating; exciting though the MC20 project most certainly is, it won’t keep the company competitive and relevant single-handedly. Neither will the Ghibli Hybrid also announced as part of the ‘MMXX’ launch event, it essentially being a 2.0-litre four-cylinder with the MHEV tech seen across the industry now.
Handily, however, Maserati has much more ambitious plans that lightly electrifying an average saloon; over the next few years it will replace its entire line up as well as introduce a new SUV. This all in addition to the MC20. By 2023 it promises to have a range all no older than 18 months, which would be an incredible achievement for a company almost infamous for leaving models on sale to wilt long after they should have been retired from the showroom.
First up will be a Levante with the Ghibli Hybrid’s tech as well as a new SUV - the Grecale. If you’re wondering what that is, it’s a Maserati named after a wind once more, a “fierce north-eastern one” of the Mediterranean no less. Maserati is making big claims for it, saying it will be the fastest, best to drive and most spacious offering in its segment. It will be the ‘everyday, everywhere, luxury thrill’, apparently. Given the competitiveness of every SUV sector, and the slightly lukewarm reception to the Levante, that new model needs to be amongst the class’s best. It’ll likely become Maserati’s best-seller, after all.
2022 looks like being the really big year for Maserati. As well as the introduction of the MC20 EV, using 800v technology, inverters with tech borrowed from Formula E, three motors and 300kw charging, the much-loved Gran Turismo and Gran Cabrio pair will be replaced. As before, they will be front-engined, rear drive continent crushers, there to sit below the MC20 in the hierarchy and take on the best from Aston, Mercedes-Benz and Bentley. It will be powered by either the new Nettuno V6 (in a lower state of tune than in the MC) or the electric powertrain. Maserati calls this part of its ‘BEVolution’ - no kidding…
Come 2023 and 2024, all of the current range will be overhauled: Ghibli, Levante and Quattroporte, again with BEV and ICE engine options. Which is great news, but it does mean a less than beguiling range soldiering on for another few years yet. And mild hybrid technology doesn’t redeem it.
However, let’s focus on the positives. Come 2024, Maserati will have a range that includes at least four variants of MC20 (the Coupe and Spyder in petrol and BEV forms), a new Gran Turismo and Gran Cabrio, a pair of fresh saloons and a couple of SUVs actually launched in the decade as well. With what are promised to be groundbreaking petrol and electric powertrains. Here’s where something like “too good to be true” should be published, given Maser’s long and often tumultuous history; rather the plan looks like exactly what Maserati should have been pursuing and executing a long time ago, with a proper halo product and a range of (hopefully) competitive models beneath.
The popularity of SUVs and, to a lesser extent, the very best sports saloons is acknowledged in Modena, with faith maintained in the sports cars largely because it’s such a core part of the Maserati DNA. The idea - and it’s tremendously appealing one - is plain for all to see: bringing together the Maserati heritage, style and expertise with the very best in contemporary technology to create, at last, a range befitting of the badge and which really is capable of taking on the very best. It starts with the MC20, with the rest not far behind. Fingers firmly crossed…
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