Italian car depreciation is delightful... if you are buying a used car.
With a starting price of $75,500, the Maserati Ghibli should offer more than it does. Its corporate sibling, the Alfa Romeo Giulia, is arguably the better sports sedan but the new model has come a long way from when it first debuted six years ago.
But all of the animosity thrown towards the Ghibli can mostly be attributed to its shortcomings as an expensive luxury sedan that can hit six figures if optioned heavily. So, what would happen if that price were to come down a bit? As in less than half. Like most Italian luxury cars, the Ghibli has been hit hard by depreciation and you simply won't believe how inexpensive used examples are right now.
The main draw for buying a used Ghibli is essentially the same as buying a new one - it is more unique than its Asian and European contemporaries. Rivals from Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz are a dime a dozen but it has taken Maserati six years to produce 100,000 examples of the Ghibli, making it much more unique. It also looks different than just about any other luxury sedan you'll see out on the road and it sounds better as well.
Add in some exotic interior materials plus an exotic badge, and your neighbors will instantly believe you just received a promotion at work when you pull up with the Ghibli. Maserati may have moved downmarket in recent years but the name still carries a ton of weight.
Now here's the real reason to buy a used Ghibli - it's now cheaper than a brand-new Honda Civic. Yes, the Ghibli is more expensive to maintain and the Civic will undoubtedly be more reliable but there are some people out there who would rather take a shot on an exotic car instead of buying something safe, dependable, and boring. We looked at used Ghibli prices and after ruling out a few crash-damaged and lemon law buy-back vehicles, we found 2014 model year examples starting in the low $20,000 range. These aren't just the base model either, many of them are the more powerful S Q4 version.
Since maintenance will be costly on a used Maserati, you might want to spend more on a certified pre-owned example. Even searching for CPO examples, we found plenty of choices starting in the low $30,000 range. Maserati's CPO warranty covers up to six years or 100,000 miles, extending the four-year factory warranty by up to two years and an additional 50,000 miles.
Ever since the Ghibli went on sale back in 2013, it has only been sold in the US with a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 offered in two states of tune. Maserati says the engine was designed and assembled by Ferrari, giving the Ghibli a unique growl unlike any of its competitors. The base output was originally 325 horsepower while the S and S Q4 models produced 404 hp. A base Ghibli could hit 62 mph in 5.6 seconds, the S model took five seconds, and the S Q4 with all-wheel-drive took 4.9 seconds.
Maserati increased the output to 345 hp and 424 hp respectively in the 2018 model year, shaving a tenth of a second off of the 0-62 times. An eight-speed automatic was the only transmission option, sending power to rear-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive.
Maserati has taken some flack because the Ghibli uses a lot of the same switchgear and electronics from cheaper Chrysler and Dodge products. On a $75,000-plus luxury car, this is a fair complaint. But on a used car for $25,000 to $35,000, it isn't such a big deal. The switches work properly and they don't necessarily feel cheap to the touch. FCA's 8.4-inch UConnect infotainment is also one of the best in the industry. Maserati did enough to class up the Ghibli's interior with excellent leather and an even more luxurious silk interior option.
The Ghibli is among the smaller options in the mid-size luxury sedan segment. It offers 33.2 inches of rear legroom and the trunk provides 17.66 cubic feet of storage. Fuel economy is an identical 17/24/19 mpg city/highway/combined no matter which trim you select, which is below average but it won't kill you at the pumps. The Ghibli also suffers from a few ergonomic flaws such as tiny cupholders and a finicky shifter prior to the 2019 model year.
The Maserati Ghibli is not a car we recommend buying new because for the same price (or less), there are plenty of better engineered and more reliable alternatives. But used prices have become so cheap, the Ghibli could be worth another look on the used market. Even with a CPO warranty, a used Ghibli costs less than a top-tier mid-size sedan from a mainstream automaker. If you are willing to roll the dice on some frequent trips to the dealership (covered under warranty), a used Ghibli might be a fun used purchase.