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2008 Maserati GT

At the 2007 Geneva Motor Show, Maserati will unveil a replacement for the current Maserati Coupe/Spider. The GT will go on sale in early 2008 at an estimated price of $110.000. Maserati is considering the new GT a competitor for the Porsche’s latest 911 models and Mercedes SL.

The initial model will be a classic coupe but featuring the same rear seats from the 612 Scaglietti. Later, in 2009, a Spyder version it is also expected that will be a coupe-cabriolet with folding hardtop and only two seats.

The Maserati GT is designed by the Italian design house Pininfarina and will be a mixture of modern and classic Maserati. The chief designer is the man behind the 599 GTB and P4/5, Jason Castriota.

The GT’s engine is based on the Ferrari’s 4.2-liter V-8, the same used in Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione. The engine range will include a 4.3 liter V8, a 5.0 liter V8 engine producing 470 bhp (a bored-up 4.2). Also a V6 Biturbo (approx. 400 bhp) based on the new V6 of the Alfa Romeo 159 is being considered. The Spyder version will be offered with a 5.0 liter V8 engine. The 0 to 60 mph will be made in 4.2 seconds and will have a top speed of 192 mph.

The new car’s body will be made from carbon composites and aluminum, while the shifter will be a new paddle-activated sequential manual six-speed from ZF, with a six-speed manual as standard. Suspension will be borrowed from the Quattroporte, which means a double-wishbone suspension with the Skyhook adaptive damping system, and the rear-mounted Cambiocorsa clutchless gearbox as used in the Quattroporte.

As the car is designed by Pininfarina, exquisite beauty is expected to surround the whole vehicle. The problem is that Maserati Maserati is considering using the old names for their new Coupe. And names like Coupe or Spyder, do not really give the cars a true identity.


History

1998-2002 Maserati 3200 GT

The car was introduced to the public at the Paris Motor Show in 1998. Maserati was soon producing over 2,000 cars annually.A thoroughbred, front-engine GT that was worthy of the best Maserati tradition.

Maserati GT

The 3200 GT’s performance is almost identical to that of two rivals - Porsche’s 911 Carrera and Jaguar’s XKR. It’s V8 engine delivered 368 hp and was equipped with an automatic gearbox. it had a top speed of 174 mph and made the 0 to 60 mph sprint in 5.3 seconds.

The most remarkable detail of its design were the tail-lights consisting of the LED diodes placed in the shape of boomerang. The car was replaced in the beginning of 2002 by similarly designed successor Maserati Coupe, when Maserati decided to turn back on the US market.

2002 - present Maserati Coupe and Spyder

In 2001 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the Spyder debuted. Maserati announced at that time that they would be returning to the North American market. In 2002, the Coupe made its appearance at the Detroit Motor Show. Maserati produced high class and sophisticated cars upon its return to the North American market.

Maserati GT

Both models have a normally aspirated 4.2 L engine producing 390 bhp and 333 lbs-ft at 4500 rpm. The top speed is 177 mph (285 km/h), while 0-60 time is 4.9 seconds. The V8 engine was designed by Ferrari but built by Maserati.

At the heart of the Coupe’s design is the front-engine tradition of which Maserati has historically been one of the most authentic and authoritative proponents.

The Maserati Coupe is provided with a new longitudinal mechanical six-speed transmission with triple cone synchronizers on first and second gears and double cone on third and fourth.

The two sportscars are available in two transmissions: GT, which is a traditional manual, or Cambiocorsa, in which upshift and downshift paddles are mounted on the steering wheel; this is intended to simulate Formula One driving.

Maserati GT

Both models include an optional computer-controlled automatic damping system called "Skyhook", high-performance Brembo brakes, and an information center that combines audio and climate controls that is difficult to use. A global-positioning navigation system and hands-free phone are available as options. Both came standard with 15-spoke, 18-inch alloy wheels in 2002, but after 2003 most had the optional five-spoke sport wheels.


Competitors

2007 Mercedes SL-Class

The SL-Class is powered by a range of V6 and V8 engines, as well as an even more powerful V12 powerplant, deliver assured driving pleasure.

With an output of 388 hp and 390 lbs-ft of torque, the newly developed V8 engine in the SL 500 offers everything that is expected of a powerful sports car. The eight-cylinder unit has a displacement of 5.5 litres and is one of the most powerful engines in its displacement class. The SL 500 accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds (predecessor model: 6.2 seconds). Despite the 26 percent boost in performance, the fuel consumption (NEDC combined) matches that of the predecessor model at 12.2 litres per 100 kilometres.

Maserati GT

The six-cylinder engine in the SL 350 is another new unit. Although this 272-hp V6 powerplant achieves fuel savings of over one litre per 100 kilometres, its output is 11 percent higher. The combined NEDC fuel consumption is 10.3 litres per 100 kilometres. The SL 350 accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 6.6 seconds, making it more than half a second faster than the predecessor model.

At the top of the model range is the SL 600 with its V12 biturbo engine. The output and maximum torque of this unit have been increased to 517 hp and 612 lbs-ft respectively. This twelve-cylinder engine accelerates the SL-Class from zero to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds (predecessor model: 4.7 seconds).

2007 Porsche 911 Turbo (997)

The sixth generation of the 911 series’ top-of-the-range model celebrated its world premiere on February 28, 2006 at the Geneva Motor Show.

The new 911 Turbo meets the highest expectations in terms of engine performance. The classic flat-six unit develops 353 kW (480 bhp) at 6,000 rpm from a 3.6-litre displacement. Maximum torque of 620 Nm is available between 1,950 and 5,000 rpm.

Maserati GT

The 997 Turbo combines VarioCam Plus with twin turbocharger units featuring Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG) – a totally new technology on a petrol-engined car. With a standard manual gearbox, the new 911 Turbo requires just 3.9 seconds to reach 100 km/h (62 mph). Equipped with the latest optional Tiptronic S transmission, the car is 0.2 seconds quicker on the standard sprint. Benchmark times to 200 km/h (124 mph) are 12.8 and 12.2 seconds, respectively. Maximum speed with either transmission is 310 km/h (193 mph).


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