In this post, club member and Maserati owner, Tony G drives this baby Maserati and tells us his thoughts.
What can I say? I own a Maserati GranTurismo, which could make me bias however, my daily is a BMW 335D X-Drive, so my review will attempt to compare between all three. I was given this Ghibli as a courtesy car from Meridien Modena down near Southampton while GranTurismo is with them for a major service.
There’s no denying that the Ghibli looks stunning in Blu Emozione, shod with 19” Proteo alloys that expose the gloss red Brembo calipers fashioning the Maserati script in white. There are the typical three port holes on the front wings, which are repeated again on the headlights. The Maserati trident appears on the rear flanks, which shares the same curve over to the rump as on the GranTurismo and Cambocorsa.
The Sabbia (cream) leather seats contrasts the exterior colour very well, with the rest of the interior being black leather and wood veneer. The headlining is the same colour as the seats, as are the seat belts. The front seats were very comfortable with lots of adjustment and lumbar support, which I need at my age. Although not kidney hugging bucket seats, I felt well supported and would be happy to endure a long drive in this space just like I would in the GranTurismo. The infotainment was spot on, with a generous touch screen and easy to navigate functions with a satnav that works superbly however, the controls on the steering wheel were less tactile and fiddley to my sausage fingers.
What’s it like to drive
This Ghibli drives a lot more like my GranTurismo than my BMW. Okay, it doesn’t have a 400 bhp thunderous V8 but the spirit of Maserati exists in this Ghibli for sure. From a technical standpoint the Ghibli has a similar electronic SkyHook suspension and near 50:50 weight distribution of the GranTurismo.
Under braking, the Brembo six pot calipers up front and four pot rears are phenomenal, they shocked me initially, straight after the rather heavy brakes of the GranTurismo. The Ghibli has variable power steering, which means that it’s very easy to park, then stiffens up as speed increases.
At higher speeds, I did find the steering a little heavier than I like, which is perhaps a little heavier than my BMW. Just like on the BMW and GranTurismo, there is a “sport” button. It alters the gear changes of the eight speed ZF auto gearbox to be at higher revs and stiffens the suspension.
What I wasn’t expecting was the change in the exhaust note from a diesel to a Chinook helicopter. It sounds amazing. Technically, I believe the V8 type sound is produced in two stages. Stage one, is to carry out noise cancelling of the diesel sound just like a set of Bose headphones. Stage two, is to then add the V8 sound via speakers in the exhaust box.
Is it practical
To achieve the Italian rear styling, the boot aperture is a little smaller than the BMW however, the split rear seats do fold to give you more room for those occasional visits to Ikea. The combined fuel consumption on my test was about 34mpg, which is about 10mpg less than my BMW. One odd thing I noticed, is that there is no filler cap, just a rubber bung on the fuel flap. Haven’t seen that before.
Would I buy it
Looks great on the drive and would be happy to cross any continent in it. For me personally, it would need an extra turbo and a further 50bhp to get me out of the BMW. I haven’t driven a car yet that would get me out of the GranTurismo.
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