Maserati at Detroit Motor Show



OF 2005

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2006 Maserati Quattroporte Sport GT
2006 Maserati Quattroporte Sport GT

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9th January, 2006

Maserati has arrived at the North American International Auto Show this week in a record breaking mood after nearly doubling Northern American sales in 2005.

Around the world Maserati sales rose by 25 per cent in 2005, compared to the previous year and Maserati is now represented in more countries than ever before in its illustrious history. Meanwhile on the race track, the Maserati MC12 took both the team and manufacturers' titles in the FIAT GT World Championship.

With 2,100 cars delivered during 2005, Maserati North America set a new high water mark in the United States and Canada, nearly doubling sales volumes compared to the 1,114 units of 2004. Of the 2,100 cars, 1,550 were Quattroportes.

The balance of units sold by Maserati in 2005 were Coupe and Spyder models, to which one must add the more recently introduced GranSport - soon to be followed on the market by the GranSport Spyder, displayed on the golden-blue Maserati Stand at the Detroit Show.

Sales success in the United States is mirrored in the global success achieved by Maserati. Maserati sales were up by 25% in 2005 versus 2004, for a total of over 5,600 units. At the end of November, riding on the success of the Quattroporte, Italy has become Maserati's second market in the world, followed by Germany and the United Kingdom. Never has Maserati's presence in the world been felt more than today: a commercial reality in 56 countries on five continents with an overall network of over 275 dealerships.

North America represents almost 40% of Maserati's total volume.

The Quattroporte Sport GT and the GranSport Spyder made their US debut at the Los Angeles Motor Show - Maserati's largest market area in North America - just days before the Detroit Motor Show. The Executive GT is the Italian flagship in its purest form, the fullest expression of the Quattroporte's elegant design and comfort.

Maserati is the only company to utilise a Transaxle drive system for the entire model line. The Transaxle layout, in which the gearbox is positioned at the rear of the car in a single unit with the differential, offers optimum weight distribution between the front axle and the rear axle. This helps optimise traction and acceleration for a more stable, balanced performance in all conditions. In short, this system delivers extraordinarily exhilarating driving and exceptional road-holding in one neat package.

Thanks to continuous developments, particularly on the gearbox, all 2006 Quattroportes in automatic mode have now their lowest consumption rate ever, reduced as much as 16.7% in highway driving, 5.8% in city driving and 9.4% in combined cycle driving.

The Quattroporte Executive GT epitomises the great Italian flagship sedan at its most exclusive, raising the elegance of the car's design and the sophistication of its interior to a new level. The Executive GT is instantly recognisable thanks to its chrome front and side grilles and Ball polished 19" wheels. Almost obsessive attention has been dedicated on both the comfort of the interior and the exclusive finish.

The cabin boasts Alcantara suede for the roof lining, a leather-trimmed steering wheel with wood inserts and a Comfort Pack (combining heating, ventilation and massage for the front seats). Rear seat passengers are treated to a separate climate control zone with control panel, retractable wood rear tables and retractable screens on the windows for extra privacy.

The Sport GT version of the Quattroporte was developed to further enhance the high performance spirit that sets the Quattroporte apart from any other luxury sedan. Features available only in this package include a black chrome trimmed grille and side air intakes which take their inspiration from Maserati's race cars, while the hood bears the pierced Trident typical of the Maserati competition cars of the past.

The car's overall sporty character is enhanced in the interior by the carbon fibre trimmed steering wheel and hand-brake grip and lightweight aluminium pedals.

The performance of the transmission has been increased: the Sport button allows the driver to significantly cut gear change times up to 35% faster thanks to enhanced software in the electro-hydraulic transmission system's CPU. At high engine speeds, the 4.2 litre V8 growls thanks to a specially tuned exhaust system.

Particular attention was given to the programming of Maserati's renowned Skyhook adaptive damping software to provide a higher level of dynamic handling, while still allowing the driver to set the system for comfortable cruising. Sculptured 20" wheels communicate immediately the car's great sporting ability and feature specially produced tyres with a pressure monitoring system. The high performance Brembo braking system now features metal weave tubing and cross-drilled discs with titanium-coloured callipers.

This open air GranSport Spyder maintains every ounce of the temperament and aggressive look of the GranSport coupe. This is emphasised first by a 10-mm-lowered set-up, a very pronounced front lower spoiler and by the side bars elegantly integrated into the body itself, all resulting in improved aerodynamic performance.

The athletic look of the car is completed by the 19" alloy wheels in the same design of those used in the Maserati Trofeo Championship mated to specially produced tyres with a profile designed to make the GranSport Spyder even more agile and responsive to the steering wheel.

The Italian roadster also shares with the coupe the evolved version of the 4.2 litre V8 producing 400 hp and a 333 lb-ft of torque, placing the GranSport Spyder among the fastest convertibles in the world. The engine has been combined with an exhaust system designed to give enthusiasts an instantly recognisable deep, full-bodied rumble. Thanks to new specific software, the GranSport Spyder offers even faster gear changing, on average 35% faster than its predecessor.

The design and materials of the interior are a perfect mix of leather, high-tech fabric and the most use of Carbon fibre in the class. The upper part of the dashboard is trimmed in leather, while the central area, framed by the piping, is trimmed in BrighTex®, the same high tech fabric of the racing MC12. The GranSport Spyder will go on sale beginning March 2006.

For Maserati, 2005 was a triumphant year in the FIA GT, the internationally sanctioned European championship where the Modena manufacturer claimed both the Manufacturers' Cup and the team title. The historic victory in the 24 Hours of Spa capping a series of great wins on some of the most demanding European circuits.

The return to competition in the United States, with an MC12 in the American Le Mans Series, was significant as the USA is the marque's biggest market and was the theatre of the now legendary Maserati win in the 1957 12-Hour race in Sebring.

Maserati launched in Detroit the establishment of Maserati Master USA driving school. Modelled directly from the extraordinarily successful Master GT Driving School held at the Varano circuit in the mountains of Parma, Italy, the US programme will provide expert driver training in Maserati products in an elegant setting.

Twelve two-day and eight single-day programmes will be offered beginning in March 2006. A total of eighteen participants will spend time in exclusively Maserati cars including the Coupe, GranSport and Quattroporte. Master Maserati will be held at the famed Road Atlanta circuit with support from Panoz Racing School. Each programme will include all technical equipment necessary, gourmet catering, concierge service and a there is a full business centre available. The two day course will also feature one night at the Château Elan resort including a Maserati supper with instructors and Maserati North America staff.

Other Maserati news: here.

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