Maserati had never produced an SUV. The market, however, is developing in that direction and therefore Trident too has decided that the time was right for this innovation. One can only imagine the incredible amount of work that has been committed over the past few years to this model, which made its début officially at the last Geneva Motor Show and will be on the roads shortly. This is a car which aims to conquer a share of the market which is already getting very crowded and certainly not by adversaries who are amateurs.
This is the case of a car which promises to be first-rate. One simply has to look at its design, an exceptional blend of Maserati tradition and SUV innovation. The external profiles and curves have been carefully designed, to such a degree that they nevertheless succeed in camouflaging its ample dimensions. Despite this, the look is still sleek, and almost sporting, thus linking it to an important heritage for the brand.
On its side panel it is impossible not to notice the prominent and extremely elegant alloy wheel rims, which have been fitted with ultra high-performance Pirelli P Zero tyres as original equipment.
Maserati is 100% Pirelli
The cooperation between Pirelli and Maserati has been in existence for a long time and the quality for which the P Zero tyres have always been renowned has done the rest. On the Levante too, indeed, the Pirelli products are not only part of the original equipment of the vehicle, but they have also been specifically built and designed for maximum adaptation to the requirements of the SUV. This is a case of OE (Original Equipment) tyres, which are actually differentiated from the rest of the range by a series of very specific characteristics. First of all, the P Zeros had to be adapted to the basic peculiarities of the vehicle, which was developed from the same platform as the Quattroporte and Ghibli models. This means also four-wheel drive and automatic gear change. As a result, Pirelli has developed a new compound and a highly specific tyre profile which makes for a particularly comfortable ride and, at the same time, provides characteristics of manoeuvrability which are absolutely fundamental for a vehicle of this size. It is no accident that Pirelli is the exclusive partner of the House of the Trident.
The interiors too are naturally also up to the normal high standards of the firm from Modena. One item above all: the upholstery signed by the prestigious firm of Ermenegildo Zegna, one of the most famous Italian male fashion labels in the world, which unsurprisingly hosted the national preview of the new SUV in its Milan showroom.
Power entrusted to the P Zeros
No Maserati, however elegant, could ever be complete without engines that are up to the task. When the launch takes place, scheduled for May, there will be two types of engine available, one petrol and one diesel (there is also talk of a hybrid, but this will not arrive before 2017). The first is a 3,000 cc V6 turbo, offered with two different power outputs: 350 and 430 HP. The latter represents absolutely the most powerful engine in the Levante range. The petrol versions are distinguished by the name Levante S. The entry level model, however, is the 3,000 cc turbo diesel, which is capable of a maximum power output of 275 HP, which is thus nevertheless impressive and sufficiently powerful. This version will focus especially upon fuel consumption, given that according to the official in-house data, it should consume, for the European combined cycle, 7.2 litres of diesel for every 100 km of road travel. The Levante S, on the other hand, will focus above all on performance: the top-of-the-range model of 430 HP, in fact, will be able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in barely 5.2 seconds, while the top speed will be 264 km/h. Taking into account the weight of the vehicle, these are really impressive results. Consequently, its tyres, the new P Zeros, need to be able to handle so much power.