NEW FOR 2014:
– All-new model.
Tired of the same old predictable German luxury sedans like the 5 Series and E-Class? Want something with a little more soul, a little more spice? Maserati is looking to lure you into its fold with the new Ghibli sedan, the most affordable model in its history.
Though the name is often associated with the long-nosed sports coupe from the late ‘60s, the reincarnated Ghibli is a four-door sedan that rides on a chopped-down version of the new Quattroporte’s chassis. Enthusiasts rejoice: the Ghibli uses pure hydraulic steering, has a mechanical limited-slip differential, and most models ride on regular springs and dampers (Skyhook adjustable adaptive dampers are offered as an option).
On the inside, the Ghibli is an odd blend of hand-crafted luxury and mass-manufactured equipment. Rich contrast stitched leather, wood, and carbon fibre are juxtaposed with Chrysler switchgear. This is no bad thing: the touchscreen system, also from Chrysler’s parts bin is considerably less complicated to use than the established competition’s setups. Cabin space is competitive for the segment; rear-seat headroom is considerably better than in swoopier rivals like the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe and Benz CLS.
The Ghibli is offered with two powertrains, both of which use the same 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged V6 and ZF-sourced eight-speed paddleshift automatic. The base rear-drive model develops 345 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. For those wanting all-weather usability, there’s the S Q4 which features a lightweight all-wheel drive system and considerably more poke: 404 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque. It might not be as much power as the high-performance V8-powered Audis and BMWs, but it’s hardly what you’d call slow. No rival can match its snarling exhaust note – hear one at full chat and you’ll go weak at the knees.
Standard equipment for the Ghibli includes 18-inch wheels, bi-xenon headlights, LED daytime running lights, LED tail lights, proximity key with push-button start, eight-way power front seats with memory, leather upholstery, power six-way driver’s seat, power folding exterior mirrors with integrated LED turn signals, metallic dark-effect interior trim, 60/40 split folding rear seats, limited-slip differential, cruise control, tire-pressure monitor, dual-zone automatic climate controls, sunroof, eight-speaker 280-watt sound system, 8.4-inch touchscreen display audio system, USB port and aux-in jack, two 12-volt power supplies, and a reverse camera.
The S Q4 adds plus wider rear tires, interior wood trim, and adaptive bi-xenon headlamps.
Key options include Bluetooth, auto-dimming mirrors, power tilt and telescoping steering column, adaptive bi-xenon lights, front and rear parking sensors, Alcantara headliner, power adjustable pedals, adaptive damping, power rear sunshade, power foot pedals, pedals in aluminium finish, heated front and rear seats, ventilated front seats, heated steering wheel, extended leather upholstery for dashboard and doors, sport suspension, power rear sun blind, 600-watt 10-speaker audio system, 1,280-watt 15-speaker Bowers & Wilkins sound system, alarm, Wi-Fi hot spot, and 19-, 20-, and 21-inch alloy wheels.