Maserati has stuck with the name of its 2003 SUV Concept for its new posh offroader. The new Maserati Kubang bows in at Frankfurt.
We’ve been predicting the arrival of a Maserati SUV for some time, but the recent launch of the new Jeep Grand Cherokee made it almost certain. And today the new Maserati Kubang arrives at Frankfurt, to the consternation of all Maserati fan boys.
But whatever the fans of the marque may say, an SUV from Maserati is a very clever move. A Ferrari SUV may just be a step too far – which is why we got the Ferrari FF – but a Maserati SUV could well revive Maserati’s fortunes in the way the Cayenne did for Porsche, and become a cash-cow to fund development of the sort of cars Maserati anoraks want – just as the Cayenne has with the 911.
Based on the new Grand Cherokee, Maserati are at pains to point out that the Kubang will still be a real Maserati. It will have Maserati style, engine, suspensions, brakes, handling and performance and be every inch the real Maserati. Or so the press release says.
Engines won’t be nicked from Chrysler, but will instead be “… proprietary engines will be designed in Modena…and will be produced in Maranello by Ferrari.”
In addition, the Kubang will have an 8-spped auto ‘box and the suspension and steering will be developed by Maserati so it has a real Maserati feel.
We’re all in favour of this, although the wails of the Maserati faithful will endlessly roll around Modena for years to come. But this is a win-win for Maserati and should – if they get it right – yield enough profit to make the rest of the rest of the Maserati range even more impressive.
And if Porsche can turn a VW in to a Cayenne, why can’t Maserati do it to a Jeep?
New Maserati Kubang SUV (2012) Photo Gallery
(3 photos – click any thumbnail for full size)