Maserati Quattroporte

Quattroporte is a very special sports sedan. Among all competitors, it is the only hand-made product. It is the only one using small but efficient twin-turbo engine. It is the only one which based on a sports coupe rather than a sedan. It is the most aggressive looking sports sedan.....everything made it so distinguish from those mass-production German or British rivals. 

Undoubtedly, the best part of Quattroporte is the engine. This 3217c.c. small block V8 with 32 valves and twin IHI turbos comes from Shamal. With slightly tune-up it is now capable of 335hp and also 335lbft. If such output is not sufficient to take on Mercedes E55AMG ( although I don't think so ), the choice of 6 speeds manual ( I strongly recommend ) should be enough to compensate. 0-60mph of 5.9sec must satisfy everyone's expectation.  

Not only strong, the V8 is so smooth, so free-revving and so musically sound that can be called a masterpiece. Until you drive Ferrari F355, you will never find a more wonderful sport-purpose V8 than Quattroporte's.  

Leave the engine behind and you may find Quattroporte inferior to other sports sedan. Firstly, its build quality still lag behind those German and British rivals, although Ferrari has helped it improve a lot. ( it is now paint in Maranello and the whole company is run by Ferrari ) Secondly, the wood and leather-rich cabin is not so spacious. Thirdly, since its chassis is actually made by lengthening the Ghibli, torsional rigidity is weak. As usually, weak chassis is likely to deteriorate handling accuracy. To compensate this, Maserati's engineers stiffened the suspensions. As a result, handling is OK, but the ride becomes rock-hard. Long journey becomes the most painful experience. As a 4 seats luxurious sports sedan, this could be a crucial blow.  

Therefore Quattroporte is a mixture of sweet and bitter. Its marvellous engine catch one's heart so deep. Its Gandini-penned exterior look may also attract tasteful people ( like me ! ). But it also has so many flaws. If one can put up with its shorts, he will be proud of owning the rarest, the most special and most characterful sports sedan in the world.  

Report created before 16 Feb 98. Last updated before 16 Feb 99. All Rights Reserved.

Quattroporte V8
Front-engined, Rwd
V8, dohc, 4v/cyl, twin-turbo.
3217 c.c.
335 hp
335 lbft
4A or 6M
1647 kg
Top speed
5.9 sec* (6M)
* Tested by Autocar

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