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Cumbria Life Road Test - Maserati Ghibli

Italian and red-blooded, it’s the connoisseur’s choice of sporting motorcars to set an adrenalin rush.

Throughout a century of motor racing and fine car making, Maserati has maintained a reputation for bespoke engineering. There’s an enviable mystique about the marque which is perceived as soon as one gazes upon the graceful yet purposeful lines of the Ghibli, Maserati’s all-new four-door sports saloon.

Study the profile of the Ghibli and the association with the bigger, and gorgeously sculpted Quattroporte grand tourer is apparent. Beneath the svelte coachwork the Ghibli shares much with its sibling in way of build, which says everything about its superb engineering.

There’s an understated elegance about the Ghibli’s beautifully appointed interior, from the ergonomic hide upholstered seats to the confined feel of the cockpit that comes with such a pedigreeperformance car. The cabin is nevertheless spacious enough to accommodate four adults, and from the driver’s viewpoint the controls and instrumentation are clear and easy to use.

The Ghibli is for Maserati because it breaks new ground in offering a truly sporting, comfortable and practical alternative to the hold the Germans and Britons have on the luxury car market. For the business executive as well as the discerning motorist who has an appetite for driving higher mileages and wants a car heralding one of the most discriminating badges, there’s even a 3-litre diesel version, a first for Maserati.

It’s the petrol engine Ghibli that’s on test, the satisfying throb of the Ferrari-built 3-litre biturbo V6 engaging on the press of the starter button. It’s one of the most refined of engines and it’s mated to the highly acclaimed ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox. Progression, as to be expected, is nothing but smooth and controlled, even under determined acceleration.

In true Italian style, this is a car that likes to be driven with panache. Handling is precise, and there’s a nicely weighted feel to the steering. While it’s relaxing on motorways,it’s the winding and hilly A and B routes that really make for thrilling driving.

For a performance car, the suspension is surprisingly compliant, and even with the test vehicle’s optional 20-inch wheels instead of the standard 18s, the ride over less than perfectly smooth surfaces is completely acceptable. Press the sport button and the driving excitement heightens.

Vital statistics

THE TEST CAR: Maserati Ghibli, 2,979cc six-cylinder V biturbo petrol, eight-speed automatic transmission.

DIMENSIONS: Overall length 4,971mm, width 1,945mm (2,100mm across mirrors), height 1,461mm

FUEL ECONOMY: 29.4mpg

CO² EMISSIONS: 223g/km (VED band K, £635 1st year and £285 standard rates)

PRICE: £52,590 OTR, with options (electric front seats with heating, keyless entry, reversing camera, 20-inch alloys, Poltrana Fau hide interior) £59,177.

TOP SPEED: 163mph

IN BRIEF: Maserati’s all-new four-door saloon sets the standard in comfort, styling elegance and driving pleasure. The Ferrari-built engine assures sporty performance while one of the most famous badges in motoring history adds more than a measure of respect.

Find out more about the Maserati Ghibli by clicking here. Alternatively, please contact us by calling 01254 769079.