Drive Type: auto
Trim: MONZA SPYDER,
Goldsboro, North Carolina, United States
We're not expecting to see a production version of the coming mid-engined Maserati coupe, expected to be named GranSport, for another few years; however, we might see it in concept form in just a few weeks at the Paris Motor Show. Australian site Car Advice got hold of an e-mail Maserati sent to friends of the Trident, and the first of the six cars mentioned is a "world premiere of a car that opens up new frontiers in terms of exclusiveness, performance and style."
Car Advice says it has been told that this will be a concept form of the GranSport, the GranTurismo replacement set to take on the Porsche 911 with ample use of carbon fiber and a 1,200-kilogram (2,600-pound) curb weight or thereabouts. The GranTurismo's 4.7-liter V8 hasn't been ruled out of the engine bay yet according to reports, but rumors persist that it will use the Ferrari-sourced twin-turbo V6 with 442 horsepower running power to the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, and have a 0-60 time of something like four seconds.
We can't see the full content of the e-mail, but among the other five cars that have been announced for the stand are the GranTurismo Sport and GranTurismo MC Stradale. With the 2014 Quattroporte not appearing until the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, the Kubang concept said to be retired before the debut of the production version at the 2014 Detroit show and the Levante still just a wee mule, guesses for the three remaining three would be variations on current models. Not that there's anything wrong with that when it's Maserati we're talking about...
Maserati sure seems to be milking the GranTurismo franchise for all its worth these days. In addition to plenty of limited editions and sport models for both the coupe and convertible, Maserati recently launched the MC version of the hardtop. Now, ahead of its debut at the Paris Motor Show, the Modenese automaker has dropped details on its latest iteration of the GT platform, the GranCabrio MC.
Visually, the droptop's most noticeable change is its new face, which has been lifted directly off the MC Stradale coupe. This means the car is a full 48 millimeters longer than the standard and Sport versions of the GranCabrio, but we like the decidedly more aggressive look to that big ol' schnoz. The large rear spoiler has also been reworked for the MC, providing even more downforce to keep that large body firmly glued to the road.
Maserati has not released powertrain details, but we assume that the GranCabrio MC uses the same 4.7-liter Ferrari-sourced V8 as the MC coupe, good for 444 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Although the Maserati GranTurismo may have looked pretty hot when it hit the scene in 2007, eight years on, it's starting to show its age. Maserati is focusing its attention on the new Quattroporte, Ghibli and upcoming Levante utility vehicle, but Camal Studio is evidently keen to pick up what Maserati has let fall by the wayside.
The design house, as you may recall, was founded by former Pininfarina designers - the same firm that penned the GranTurimso (among other Maseratis) in the first place. Camal calls its redesign the Tributo (a name which should require no translation) and it draws its inspiration from Maserati GTs past like the original Ghibli, Bora and Khamsin. The resulting design comes across as clean enough, but to our eyes somewhat unremarkable. And if you're going to go to the trouble of coachbuilding a Maserati, you might as well go for a bit more visual impact. But that's judging solely from the renderings, and that's just our opinion - the financially well-endowed customers Camal is going after may feel otherwise once they see it in the flesh.