For Maserati fans, the name “Ghibli” is reminiscent of the first Ghibli model, introduced in 1967. It was a powerful V8 Engine Gran Tourer, capable of 250km/h. The name was inspired by the “hot dry wind” of the Libyan Desert. It was the birth of a work of art. During the course of its production, Maserati made only 1,295, which means the original is a great collector’s car today.
Another version was presented in 1992, designed by the genius Marcello Gandini, the designer of the Lamborghini Countach, the quintessential Italian supercar. Gandini’s creation – also a two-door, luxury grand tourer – was unfortunately less successful than the first Ghibli.
Fifty years after the birth of the original Ghibil, Maserati introduces another with a new design and a new concept. This model is a four-door, which makes it a direct competitor in a segment dominated by the Germans: the BMW 5 Series, the Mercedes E Class and the Audi A6. It’s the war of the luxury sedans, made for businessmen who like to drive their cars in a modern and technological environment. The newest version of the Ghibli, however, has personality. It may not have the most modern technological package and the active and passive safety equipment of the competitors, but it has a soul.
Start with the drivability. It handles very well considering the 1,810 kg kerb weight. Suspensions, weight distribution, geometry and chassis are extremely well honed. The car turns in with minimum under steer and the steering is very precise, yet a bit numb. It only lacks a little feedback for my taste. Nevertheless, once the front of the car is in the right direction, the body follows the line very well, and stability is guaranteed. Traction is immense thanks to the all-wheel-drive system, which is standard on this model and transfers electronically up to 50 percent of the power – when necessary – to the front wheels. On a road with medium- to long-radius bends, you can enjoy its balance and composure with a big smile on your face.
The engine is a twin-turbo, 3.0 Ltr V6, capable of 410 BHP at about 5,500 RPM. Top speed has been recorded at 284 Km/h, and 0 to 100km/h acceleration in a mere 4.8 seconds. What I like most about its power, is its delivery; there is plenty of torque at lower revolutions that comes with a strong push after 5,000 RPM, and a nice power rush to the red zone. It’s a characteristic I particularly appreciated, which adds personality to the whole package. Push the Sport button and you can add an intoxicating sound to the general orchestra and a sharper engine mapping and throttle response.
The interiors are also up to the level of the car’s German competitors. Very good materials and alignments of panels make the ambience very pleasant. There is no sign of cheap solutions in the design or in the choice of plastics and leathers. The seats are extremely comfortable, perfect for long trips or for climbing mountain passes at a decent pace and in great style.
This car has character in all aspects and even if it may look a bit pricey in comparison to other European models, I believe it’s great value for the money.
The Maserati Ghibli S Q4
Engine Layout: V6
Displacement: 2,979 cc
Power: 410 Bhp
Max Speed: 284 Km/h
Accel 0-100 Km/h: 4,8 Secs
Starting price: AED339,000 AED ($ 92,244)