Maserati is ending its engine-sourcing agreement with former sibling Ferrari with a bang.
The Fiat Chrysler brand is adding new range-topping Trofeo models to its Ghibli and Quattroporte sedans with a specially tuned version of Ferrari’s twin-turbo 3.8-liter V-8 engine.
The Trofeo variants make 580 hp and 538 lb-ft of torque, matching the output of the Levante Trofeo crossover that bowed last year. This compares with 523 hp and 524 lb-ft for the V-8 in the current Quattroporte GTS (the Ghibli previously was available only with a 3.0-liter V-6 that topped out at 345 hp and 369 lb-ft.).
Range-topping Maserati models from left to right: Quattroporte, Levante and Ghibli. (Image: Maserati)
Mated with a ZF 8-speed automatic transmission, the Ferrari V-8 propels the Ghibli Trofeo from zero to 62 mph in 4.3 seconds. The larger—and heavier—Quattroporte Trofeo takes an extra 0.2 seconds, while the Levante trims the time by the same amount.
Top speed for the rear-wheel-drive Trofeo sedans is 203 mph, making them the fastest Maserati production cars in history. The all-wheel-drive Levante Trofeo maxes out at 187 mph.
Driving Dynamics, New Automation
Maserati also has added a “Corsa” mode to the Trofeo sedans. The sport setting, which is designed to enhance driving dynamics and improve safety, bolsters throttle and engine responses, speeds gearshifts and stiffens and lowers the suspension.
The cars also get a launch control function, and there is less intervention of the electronic chassis system. Other goodies include new driver assist functions and semi-autonomous driving capability under certain conditions on surface streets and highways.
To differentiate them from other Ghibli and Quattroporte models, the Trofeo cars feature special badging detailing.
The cars also get a reworked grille and front fascia, new taillights, carbon fiber accents and larger wheels. Maserati says aerodynamics and cooling have been enhanced.
Interior changes are highlighted by a larger 10.1-inch touchscreen, leather sports seats and new trim packages.
As it weans itself from Ferrari engines, Maserati is developing its own 3.0-liter V-6 engine. The powerplant is said to be the first engine that Maserati has developed internally in about 20 years.
Dubbed “Nettuno,” the lightweight engine is expected to kick out 630 hp and 538 lb-ft of torque.
Maserati will detail the engine next month when it unveils the upcoming MC20 supercar.
Future Maserati models also will include a variety of electrified variants, starting with a mild-hybrid system in 2021 Ghibli.
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Dan Nicholson is vice president of General Motors Global Propulsion Systems, the organization that had been “GM Powertrain” for 24 years.