Maserati Ghibli revealed
Maserati has revealed the new Ghibli saloon ahead of the public launch at next week’s Shanghai Motor Show, taking the fight directly to BMW and Mercedes with their 5-Series and E-Class.
Taking design cues from the recently launched Quattroporte, but in a smaller and more sporting package, the new Ghibli will be launched this year and aims to help Maserati achieve their goals of selling 50,000 cars per year worldwide. Previously Maserati has only focused on sports cars and the large saloon (S-Class/7-Series) class with the Quattroporte, which has never yielded massive sales. Entering the much more popular ‘E-Segment’ should ensure that Maserati hits the big time in terms of sales numbers.
The Ghibli has certainly got one ace up its sleeve straight from the off – styling. In a segment dominated by the Teutonic Twins which have conservative styling, the Ghibli is a breath of fresh air. With a low nose and aggressive headlights flanking a new angular interpretation of the classic Maserati grille, with a huge lower intake below the Ghibli has one of the most aggressive front ends we’ve ever seen on a production saloon. The front wings, like on the Granturismo, have a sharp crease that flows over and down the bodyside to the rear haunches which are similarly bulging. The rear is possibly the least exciting part of the design, with hints of Korean design in there, but it still manages to have some nice touches. Sculpted flanks help to disguise the bulk and there are a nice set of 20-inch alloy wheels to set it off.
Inside there is a thankfully more modern design than that seen in the Granturismo, with a large touchscreen infotainment system and a high centre console. The trademark stylish leather dash completes the look.
Precise technical specs haven’t been revealed yet, but we know that there will be a diesel powerplant for the first time in a Maserati. The twin turbo 3.0 litre V6 unit will have around 290 bhp and will be linked to an 8-speed ZF automatic gearbox. Petrol fans will be offered a 3.0 litre twin turbo V6 as well, in either 330 bhp or 410 bhp guises, going through the same gearbox. A V8 is expected to be offered later.
In the UK the Ghibli will be solely offered in rear wheel drive, but in LHD markets there will be the option of four wheel drive on the petrol engine variants.
The Ghibli will start at under £50,000 for the diesel, rising to around £65,000 for the most powerful petrol.
Images courtesy of Maserati