Car review: Maserati Quattroporte S

This sleek, chic luxury car requires some careful handling, but is quite enchanting.

by Matthew Gwyther
Last Updated: 17 Jun 2016

The best thing about this car is the name. To be able to respond to 'What do you drive, then?' with 'a Maserati' would be rather fine. Something very different - indeed the tagline is 'the absolute opposite of ordinary'.

The marque lacks the look-at-me flashiness of Ferrari or Porsche, but also the mass visibility of BMW, Mercedes or Jaguar. In 2015, Maserati sold 1,434 cars in the UK where BMW shifted 167,391, Merc 145,254 and Jag 23,954. Maserati is a niche most alike in sales size to Bentley. Both make fast, luxury cruisers.

The company - 102 years old and now owned by Fiat Chrysler - has been through more ups and downs over the years than skiers on the drag lift at Cortina. But it is now stable and in possession of a plan which includes bringing an SUV, the Levante, into its line-up. A slight sadness because every manufacturer appears to need an SUV in the line-up in 2016.

MT stayed lower to the ground and went for the traditional Quattroporte. There have been six generations of Quattroporte (meaning 'four doors') since the early 1960s, many the weird efforts of Maserati's previous owners including Citroen, De Tomaso and latterly Ferrari.

The current Quattroporte is a great big beast of a thing and over 5m in length. But the lines are very svelte and elegant. It really looks as if it means business. The company's historic trident on the bonnet is the symbol of the city of Bologna where the company began, established by five brothers.

They really know how to create attractive cars at Maserati. The best-looking Maseratis ever were the 3500 GT and the 250F, a racing car in which Fangio and Moss won one Grand Prix after another in the 1950s. Both remain showstoppers.

Inside, the creamy leather looks and smells just right. This model was the slightly less juicy V6 petrol, although you can have an insanely fast and thirsty V8 or a diesel. Initially, it feels a very large and powerful handful that requires careful attention. But after four days, one relaxes into its charms and feels quite at home.

Despite the growling noise from the rear end when you accelerate hard, it's surprisingly feminine. Indeed, the only friend I know who runs one is a female Labour peer. And she has excellent taste.

Rating 4/5



PRICE: £81,660

ENGINE: 2,979cc V6 60 degs

TRANSMISSION: Eight-speed automatic

FUEL CONSUMPTION: 29.4 mpg (combined)

CO2 EMISSIONS: 223g/km (combined)

POWER: 410 hp/301 kW

0-62MPH: 5.1 seconds

TOP SPEED: 177 mph


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