Maserati are planning to increase sales by ten-fold by introducing two cars to replace the Quattroporte and adding a Maserati SUV.
Maserati are about to be the recipients of some of the benefits (if you care to see them as such) of the input of Chrysler, with a Maserati SUV and two new Quattroportes planned to replace the current Maserati Quattroporte over the next few years, thanks to the availability of Chrysler’s platforms and engines.
Revealing plans to increase Maserati sales almost ten fold – from under 6,000 a year to over 50,000 – Sergio Marchionne has said Maserati will introduce two new cars to replace the ageing Maserati Quattroporte.
It’s felt that the current Quattroporte falls between two stools – it’s too big to be a proper drivers car and too small to be a proper chauffeur car. So the solution is to make a ‘baby’ Quattroporte and a larger Quattroporte.
The baby Quattroporte will launch in 2012 and get a highly-revised version of the Chrysler V-6 Pentastar with over 400bhp bolted in to a car that was planned to be a new Alfa Romeo (pictured above as the new baby Quattroporte). But the need to address the Quattroporte’s issues, and the bigger profit margins possible at Maserati, has meant Alfa’s loss is Maserati’s gain.
The bigger Quattroporte will be significanly larger, large enough in fact to compete with LWB versions of the S-Class, A8, 7 Series and XJ. It will get the Ferrari-built 4.7-liter V-8 with direct injection, around 475hp and ZF’s eight-speed auto ‘box (just like Audi and BMW).
The Maserati SUV Concept will turn up in a couple of months at Frankfurt. It’s based on the new Jeep Grand Cherokee but gets the Ferrari-built 4.7-liter V-8 with 450bhp and ZF’s eight-speed auto ‘box. Which – Ferrari FF apart – is probably as close as we’ll ever get to a Ferrari SUV.
Price points are £50-65k for the baby Quattroporte and £120-140k for the large Quattroporte, and a build total between the two of 30-35,000 units, with the Maserati SUV accounting for another 10-15,000 sales. Maserati give no indication of price on the SUV, but with a Ferrari lump under the bonnet we’d expect it to be at least Cayenne Turbo money – £100k plus.
We find ourselves strangely in favour of these plans.