Maserati Quattroporte

 

By Tim Saunders

 

Object of desire requires firm hand…

A raunchy lonely hearts ad in a newspaper? No. More a description of the £94,000 super sleek, ultra luxurious Maserati Quattroporte V8 Sport GTS saloon. 

A colleague of mine is the chief executive of a public limited company and when he wanted a unique set of wheels he looked no further than the legendary Italian manufacturer. 

“I’ve had a thoroughly satisfactory decade of owning Maseratis,” he reveals, not wishing to divulge his name for fear of negative publicity as the pay gap between bosses and staff continues to rise. “And as far as the QP (Quattroporte) is concerned one word covers it - ‘everything’ – it is ‘everything’ I need from a car!”

From the moment you clap eyes on the QP its strong presence is instantly felt. The Quattroporte’s elegant design never fails to win admirers and it’s hard to tear yourself away to actually step inside and drive. This very tasteful, well-proportioned supermodel is drop-dead gorgeous. It feels as if you’re nursing an explosive because the smallest kick of the accelerator sees it literally launch off like a rocket while it corners with laser-guided precision. The six-speed auto quickly and smoothly changes between gears getting the most from the 4.7-litre engine.

This is only the second time I have had the chance of driving a Maserati and like drinking a fine Chateau Margaux, the experience never fails to satisfy, feeling just that little bit naughty.

Like the equally attractive GranTurismo I had the pleasure of driving last year, as soon as you open the door a smile stretches across your face. It happens without fail every time as you are greeted by the sumptuous leather and a finish of the highest quality. This combined with a superior driving position all help to create a truly winning formula. Turn the key in the ignition and the roar and subsequent rumble from the exhaust is sufficient to make the road beneath vibrate. A Maserati makes a magnificent statement. 

Our run along the A27 to Brighton provides some good opportunities to sample the Maserati’s magnificent abilities – and they can be enjoyed within the legal speed limit, too. With a sub-five second 0-60 time boyracers are left… frankly irritated. And my Italian beauty does this so effortlessly. As you would expect handling and cornering are exemplary. 

Parkers, the car experts, write: “The Quattroporte may have a glamorous sounding name, but the badge simply means ‘four door’ in Italian. However, the Maserati is much more than merely an everyday saloon. It’s exquisitely styled, utterly unique and offers storming performance along with refinement. So while it may be an alternative to cars like the Mercedes S-Class or BMW 7-Series, it is a far more individual and characterful choice. There are now two engines available - both providing thunderous performance and a soundtrack to match, while the handling is everything you’d expect from Maserati and defies the cars sheer size and weight. In October 2008 it was facelifted with LED front and rear lights, a new grille plus interior tweaks including a revised centre console.”

 

Maserati Quattroporte (2004 on)

 

New price range: £81,275 - £94,350

 

Engine: 4.7-litre, 8 cylinder, 32 valves

0-60mph: 4.9secs

Top speed: 177mph

Power: 433bhp

Economy: 18mpg

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