The new Maserati Quattroporte – designed by the famous Pininfarina house – is he ultimate embodyment of qualities for which Italy is well-known worldwide: respect of beauty and good living, style, sophisticated engineering, genuinely sporty temperament and alluring exclusivity.
Other features also make this new Maserati a truly exclusive car: the compact, light, sophisticated 4.2-liter V8 engine that punches out 400 bhp; the Skyhook automatic damping system; the renowned MSP (Maserati Stability Program); electronically controlled power steering; and a powerful braking system.
What makes the Maserati Quattroporte absolutely irresistible is the combination of the technical solutions, the lack of any fussy details or complications, the sensuality of a line created by the world’s most famous stylists and a sophisticated bespoke leather and wood interior personalized to suit each individual owner.
Although there are other premium sedans that offer equal or greater luxury for less money, the Maserati Quattroporte is certainly the most exclusive and possesses the most flair among the sport-oriented luxury sedans.
The present form of Maserati Quattroporte combines strength and power in a sensual package, in which every last detail has been carefully finished. Its styling is unmistakably Italian: elegant yet aggressive and devoid of even the slights hint of fussiness; the lines flow clean and fluid, while its high waist-line gives it a sense of solidity and robustness. The Quattroporte is a big, refined car, yet sporty due to the beautifully balanced proportions of an athlete, which lend it an air of confident dynamism. It was designed over a long wheelbase with a cab-back stance that highlights the length of the bonnet.
There are three trim levels of the 2006 Maserati Quattroporte: base, Sport GT and Executive GT. The base Quattroporte includes 18-inch wheels, an adjustable Skyhook suspension system, bi-xenon high-intensity-dislarge headlights, dual-zone climate control, a navigation system and a Bose audio system with CD player.
The Sport GT benefits of more performant hardware: 20-inch alloy wheels, drilled brake disks, sport exhaust, a modified six-speed sequential shift gearbox for faster gearchanges, carbon-fiber interior trim and aluminum racing pedals.
The Executive GT adds chrome mesh for the grille and side vents and polished 19-inch wheels. Also, the Alcantara headliner – a choice of wood accents, massing front seats, rear climate control and pull-down tables for rear passengers. Among the options, it offers a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, run-flat tire package, sunroof, CD changer and wide variety of special exterior colors.
The ample greenhouse area reveals the clean, aerodynamic line of the sides, which is characterized by three small rectangular air vents. The absence of the usual quarterlight on the front doors is, in turn, a special solution normally associated with GT cars.
The rear door harmoniously follows the line of the bodywork when opened, which is particularly attractive design detail. The Quattroporte’s rear section is high and compact and seems to be actively pushing the car forward, owing to this soft, clean overall look. In order to create greater downforce, a slender lip has been incorporated into the tail.
The result of many hours in the wind tunnel is the aerodynamic line, which optimizes the car’s aerodynamic efficiency, aiming at improving performance, safety and stability, without having to sacrifice any of its alluring styling.
A perfect extension of the exterior styling is the design of the Maserati Quattroporte’ interior, despite leather and wood are common in the luxury class. Due to the car’s long wheelbase, the interior is over 2 meters long, offering its passenger plenty of room to stretch their legs.
Electronically adjustable front seats with 14 different settings are also standard for the Quattroporte. The driver’s seat has three memory settings and a special feature that slides the seat back and raises the steering column to make getting in and out of the car more comfortable. The passenger in the rear-seat can also move the front passenger seat up to 22 cm forward at the touch of a button on the central arm rest.
Every Quattroporte is powered by a double-overheaded-cam 4.3-liter V8, developed by Ferrari, which is rated at 393 hp at 7,250 rpm and 333 lb-ft of torque at 4,750 rpm. According to Maserati, it takes 5.1 seconds from 0 to 60 mph and puts the top speed at 171 mph. The power to the rear wheels is sent by a six-speed sequential-shift manual transmission (called ‘Duo Select’) with an electrohydraulic clutch. This Duo Select allows manual gear-changing via steering-wheel-mounted paddles or, optionally, it can function in a fully automatic mode.
The Quattroporte’s protection systems are exceptionally innovative and exceed even the strictest American test standards. The car’s basic structure is specifically designed to turn the cabin into a protective cell, and the soft, rounded forms of the interior, as well as the Quattroporte’s safety belt-airbag system make it an example of modern passive safety at its best. The airbag is activated by sensors situated in the front and on the sides of the car and controlled by a CPU in the central instrument tunnel. The safety features also include laminated glass, which is much more resistant than traditional glass.
Despite its well over two tons (4,400 pounds) weight, the Maserati Quattroporte is surprisingly easy and enjoyable to drive because of its communicative steering and excellent body control. The Skyhook system is controlled by a software designed to provide optimum in-car comfort. This system is remarkable for its ability to absorb every bump on the road for an incredibly comfortable ride, combined with excellent performance and sportiness. Also, the acceleration sensors monitor the movements of the wheels and the car’s body, instantly adjusting the calibration of the dampers to suit.
The Maserati Stability Program offers drivers extra support in difficult situation, interfacing with the ABS, EBD and ASR functions and acting on the brakes and engine to guarantee the driver’s control of the car, even at crucial moments.
The Maserati Quattroporte may not pack the ultimate wallop in terms of ripping acceleration that a few of its rivals do, but definitely there is enough performance on tap to satisfy the most speed-hungry enthusiasts.