When most companies go about creating their flagship sedan conservative feelings can prevail. Most of these companies (i.e. Mercedes, BMW, and Audi) have been building a large four-door sedan for decades. They tend to go with a don’t fix what’s not broken mantra when updating the look, design, and feel of the car lending to a sense of evolution rather than revolution when a new model appears.
Maserati had the luxury of not really having to please anyone when they decided to build their 4-door sedan, the Quattroporte. Designers and engineers wanted the sedan to evoke more emotion than others in its class and have accomplished just that. Looking at today’s 2011 Quattroporte, it’s hard to believe that essentially the same model has been in production for six years now. It is still stunning to look at and cannot really be compared to anything in terms of design except perhaps the new Aston Martin Rapide.
After winning a slough of awards throughout its production, the Quattroporte will enter 2011 with some updates, a baby brother, and the same Ferrari sourced V8 that we all enjoy so much.
Hit the jump for more details on the 2011 Maserati Quattroporte.
We were sitting in a Ferrari – Maserati – Lotus dealership trying to catch a glimpse of some of the most stunning cars on the market today. The showroom floor was lined with F430s, 612 Scagliettis, and GranTurismos. It took us a few moments to catch our breath, but we were eventually led to a Quattroporte sitting on top of a rotating platform under bright track lights. At first we could not understand why this car would be the one displayed so prominently, after all there was a 599 GTO sitting less than thirty feet away.
As we watched it twirl around the message became clearer. This car is not simply a 4-door sedan; it is also not simply a sports car. Maserati took the long hood and sculpted it far beyond anything else on the market. It curves in and out, has vents along the side, and seems to have a gaping black hole for a grille with the Maserati trident sitting in front.
New spoilers and revised bodywork complete the update to the flagship sedan. Use of LED lighting for the headlights and rear taillights also make an appearance and provide a fresh look and make for some dramatic photo shoots. Even the base Quattroporte is finished off with 19” Neptune wheels while the Sport GT S receives a choice between two 20” models and a special “Dark Chrome” finish.
The Italians have not forgotten about the interior of this sedan either. Leather covers nearly every surface and where that is missing, either Alcantara or wood fills the void. New seating positions, updated switchgear, increased rear seat amenities, and personalization options have been added to keep the Quattroporte ahead of the pack.
According to Maserati, the seating position has been revised allowing for better visibility and increased driver comfort. Selecting the option to receive the Luxury package will get your seats covered in the finest Poltrona Frau leather with the logo embossed to the headrests. This year there will be two new leather colors as well; a lighter Sabbia and the darker brown Marrone Carniola. Many of the options for the car are considered “personalization” and such packages include the sport dynamism, handling package, interior and travel package, and executive package.
Rear seat passengers can have the option of reclining, heated, ventilated, and massage seats. Inside the rear armrest is also a place to store two glasses for that bottle of Champagne that you undoubtedly indulge in while Jeeves drives you home. With rear-seat comfort being as important as those in the front seats, Maserati took a lot of time perfecting the HVAC system. The Dual Zone climate control is controlled from the dash, but there is an option for a command panel in the back. There are a total of six vents for the rear seat passengers, not including the fans located in the optional ventilated seats. Two are centrally located on the console, two more under the front seats, and two on the B-pillar.
The main switchgear for the car is located centrally in the console and dash. Suspension adjustments, transmission changes, ventilation control, and door locks are all easily understood buttons that have been rearranged for better ergonomics. Front and center is the Maserati Multimedia System with satellite navigation, Bluetooth capability, 30GB hard drive, CD changer, and a 7” screen. A rear-seat entertainment system is available complete with a central screen and auxiliary inputs for video games and other consoles.
Maserati offers three different trim levels for the Quattroporte, starting with the base model, adding the S and the GT S models. All offer the 4.6-liter Ferrari sourced V8 that can rev up to 7,200 rpm. The base model enjoys power figures equaling 400hp at 7,000rpm and 460 lb-ft of torque at 4,750 rpm. These numbers allow the base model to travel from 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds. One of the major updates through the Quattroporte’s life has been the addition of the ZF transmission developed between the two companies to help boost low-mid level power.
The Quattroporte GT S has introduced the most powerful engine available with the addition of a sport racing exhaust and updated electronic software that help the car reach 60mph in 5.4 seconds. It now produces 440hp at 7,000rpm and 490 lb-ft of torque at 4,750 rpm. Additions to the Skyhook suspension system have given the GT S its most firm stance ever increasing road-hugging capability for the big sedan. Sensors that work in conjunction with the Maserati Stability Program (MSP) also help keep the driver in control of the car at all times and in all conditions. Other enhancements include six-piston calipers on different diameter rotors for better braking as opposed to the four piston models on the base Quattroporte.
The 2011 Maserati Quattroporte is now on sale with price tags ranging from $121,250 for the base Quattroporte, $126,515 for the Quattroporte S, and $134,700 for the Quattroporte Sport GTS. Add the personalization options and the price jumps to $126,515 (base), $135,850 (Model S), and 140,850 (Sport GTS).
The Maserati Quattroporte may stand out in a crowd from other big sedans, but this segment is heavily contested. The Mercedes S-Class, BMW 7-Series, Bentley Flying Spur, and Porsche Panamera provide the biggest threats. The Porsche is available in Panamera 4 trim with a 400hp V8 and a quicker 0-60mph time. We won’t get into how much better looking the Maserati is than the Porsche, but if performance is paramount, the Panamera Turbo offers 500hp and unbeatable on-road prowess. The Mercedes and BMW models offer that evolution factor and have been improving for years. The current models offer luxury, power, and prestige, but none of them are quite as unique as the Maserati. The Italian machine adds an intangible element in conjunction with that magical Ferrari V8. For those looking to have a luxury sedan and a racecar pedigree, than the Maserati Quattroporte is your best choice.
Aging, but Gracefully
Better Performance from Competition
New Model Soon