Maserati Range and 2012 Upgrades

In Maserati by Jonathan Humphrey

2012 Maserati GranCabrio

Acclaimed by the motoring press as one of the world’s most-beautiful and desirable cars, Maserati has worked to maintain that status by giving the GranCabrio a range-topping powerhouse in the flagship GranCabrio Sport.

The critically acclaimed GranCabrio is a full four-seat convertible offering the perfect blend of pace and luxury, with a smooth, fast, six-speed automatic transmission, perfect weight distribution and rear-wheel drive. The GranCabrio has the longest wheelbase (2942mm) in the four-seat convertible segment, yet boasts class-leading structural rigidity, providing added safety, comfort and agile handling. The GranCabrio’s underbody was re-engineered to ensure Maserati’s trademark handling and agility carried over to the convertible intact. It also boasts special materials in its triple-layer cloth roof to ensure thermal and sound insulation, regardless of the outside temperature. The roof mechanism itself is strong and light (60kg), and takes just 20 seconds to fully fold back into its compartment.

Already a sales success in every one of Maserati’s 63 markets worldwide, the GranCabrio sales have been further boosted by the addition of the GranCabrio Sport, a car that offers a unique blend of enriched performance and luxury refinements.

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Conceived to give the GranCabrio a harder-edged model to sit alongside the GranTurismo S and the Quattroporte Sport GT S, the GranCabrio Sport is the first GranCabrio to benefit from Maserati’s Low Friction Program to give it 331kW of power (450HP). This configuration of the naturally aspirated 4.7-litre V8 generates 510Nm of torque and makes the GranCabrio Sport’s engine more reactive to the driver’s most-nuanced inputs. Its six-speed automatic transmission now includes the super-fast MC Auto Shift software. Developed directly from the transmission in the Quattroporte Sport GT S, the MC Auto Shift gives the GranCabrio Sport driver even greater engagement by improving gearshift times and introduces a digital in-dash display to indicate the ideal gear-shift timing. The handling has received attention, too, with an upgrade and revision of the Skyhook active-suspension system to give it sportier tuning, and the adoption of drilled and slotted dual-cast brake discs. The mechanical changes also include a revised exhaust system which automatically opens its bypass valves in Sport mode to provide an even richer sound and a shorter exhaust path.

Visually, the GranCabrio Sport is characterized by a more pronounced dynamic look that begins with the GranCabrio’s distinctive nose, a black grille and a Trident with red accents.

The headlights now have a black look with white sidemarks, while front corner splitters and the redesigned side skirts are both body coloured. The dynamic look is finished with new, bespoke 20” Astro-design rims.

The GranCabrio Sport featured two significant standard additions to emphasize its extremes of driving fun: elongated, Trofeo-design shift paddles at the wheel (with Maserati “Active Shifting”) and drilled aluminum pedals.

The GranCabrio Sport also debuted a new body colour for Maserati: Rosso Trionfale, inspired by the red national colour used on 1950s racing Maseratis – in 1957, Juan Manuel Fangio won his fifth F1 World Title at the wheel of a red Maserati 250F. Inside the cabin, two new leather colours are available for the new M-design seats: Bianco Pregiato, a brilliant ivory shade; and Grigio Chrono, a sporty, dark tone of grey.

MC Sport Line contents are available on the GranCabrio Sport to make its look even more aggressive.

The GranTurismo 2012 range

One of the most beautiful cars of its generation, Maserati has released a range of upgrades to the car that changed the rules for fast, comfortable sports cars that could carry four full-sized adults.

Powered by a 4.2-litre, all-alloy V8 engine producing 298 kW (405HP) at 7100rpm, the GranTurismo sprints to 100km/h in 5.2 seconds and can reach speeds of up to 285km/h.

With the MY2012 upgrades, the GranTurismo S now benefits from the Low Friction Program to lift its power output of its 4.7-litre V8 by 8kW (10HP) to  331kW (450HP) at 7000rpm, while reducing its fuel consumption by 6% to 10.7 litres/100km on the Extra Urban cycle.

First seen on the GranTurismo MC Stradale, the Diamond-Like Coating of the tappets and camshaft lobes of the 4.7-litre V8 engine and a redesign of the oil sump’s fluid dynamics has also helped to lift the engine’s torque output by 20Nm to 510Nm at 4750rpm.

The stronger engine helps the GranTurismo S to build on the strengths of its electro-actuated six-speed gearbox with its transaxle layout and self-locking rear differential to create a remarkably strong driveline.

The automatic-transmission version of the GranTurismo S has a slightly different version of the upgraded 4.7-litre V8 and combines it with all the comfort and silken gearshifts of the 4.2-litre GranTurismo’s six-speed automatic transmission to create the GranTurismo S Automatic.

Its 4.7-litre V8 pulls the extra-urban fuel consumption down to 9.8 litres/100km (with emissions of 227 grams of CO2/km), even while producing 323kW (440HP) at 7000rpm and 490Nm of torque at 4750rpm.

Like the GranCabrio Sport, the MY2012 GranTurismo S Automatic benefits from the development of the MC Auto Shift, now available as either a stand-alone optional feature or as part of the “Sport pack”, with the same MC Auto Shift functionality as the Quattroporte Sport GT S and GranCabrio Sport.

The GranTurismo range has been upgraded with a series of key design developments, including new exterior colour (the Rosso Trionfale that debuted on the GranCabrio Sport), new interior finishes, new colour and trim options and new leathers.

Like the GranCabrio, all MY2012 GranTurismo’s have adjustable lumbar support for the front passenger seat as standard. There is also a new range of optional wheels, along with an optional anodized Matt Red brake caliper to match the Rosso Trionfale body paint.

At the top of the performance range, is the Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale.

Inspired by both the Trofeo GranTurismo MC and the GT4 motorsport programs, the Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale is the most powerful, lightest, sharpest handling and, with a 301km/h top speed, fastest Maserati on sale today.

Built in response to customer demands for race track-style speed for the street, it incorporates the handling and aerodynamic lessons from Maserati’s three racing programmes.

It was the first Maserati to benefit from the Low Friction Program and produces 331kW (450HP) from its 4.7-litre V8 engine, while its 510Nm of torque is a further 20Nm improvement. But it was the slashing of 110kg of weight that helped the Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale to slash its 0-100km/h sprint time to just 4.6 seconds. It is now possible order the optional roll bar with the standard three-point seat belt instead of the four-point harness.

The MC Sport Line package includes also a stiffer suspension set-up for the GranTurismo S, which further improves handling performance.

The Quattroporte range

The multi award-winning Quattroporte marches on as Maserati’s strong and consistent performer, both in its sales and in its on-road performance.

The range begins with the Quattroporte, moves into the Quattroporte S, with its 4.7-litre V8 engine, and is headlined by both the Quattroporte Sport GT S and the Quattroporte Sport GT S Awards Edition.

The Quattroporte Sport GT S is the hard-edged performance flagship, whereas the Quattroporte Sport GT S “Awards Edition” made its debut in 2010 to celebrate the 56 major international design and automotive awards that the Maserati sedan has received since its debut.

With its sports exhaust system freeing up more power, the Quattroporte Sport GT S’s 4.7-litre V8 boasts 323kW (440HP) of power at 7000rpm. It retains the Quattroporte S’s 490Nm of torque, but directs its performance more aggressively.