The upcoming Quattroporte will shrink and take its place.
Big changes are happening over at Maserati. The brand recently entered unchartered territory with the Grecale compact SUV and is looking to shed its poor reliability reputation with a new 10-year warranty plan. Aside from this, the Italian automaker will rejig its lineup in the coming months, starting with the discontinuation of the Ghibli sedan in 2024.
Maserati Australia's Grant Barling told Drive the 5 Series rival won't be replaced. Instead, the next-generation Quattroporte will shrink in size and take its place in the lineup. "The plan is for the Ghibli and Quattroporte to become one. So the Quattroporte will become a short-wheelbase [vehicle] - Ghibli-sized, but called a Quattroporte".
But for fans of the brand and V8 engines alike, this isn't the saddest news on the Maserati front.
As the Modena-based brand prepares to offer electric vehicles, it seems the glorious Ferrari-derived 3.9-liter V8 engine will be axed too. "We will stop producing the V8," added Barling. Currently, Maserati's soulful eight-pot is used in the high-performance Trofeo lineup.
It's a shame to see a spirited automaker such as Maserati fall victim to the SUV craze but, if it plans to survive, this move is necessary. Barling described the sedan segment as "tough to be in" and cited poor sales as the reason for the move. "To be honest, [the large sedan] segment has come down quite a bit," he added.
Maserati currently offers the Grecale with ICE engines and plans to introduce the all-electric Folgore variant soon. However, it's unclear as to whether the next-generation Quattroporte will head down this route or be offered as an electric-only sedan. If the company does decide to offer combustion engine variants, we can expect hybridized six-cylinder powertrains. An all-electric Levante is also planned to debut in the coming years.
The Ghibli's future has been up in the air for quite some time, so this move was expected. What's interesting, however, is that Maserati will reposition the Quattroporte as a lesser model. This will likely make the exotic sedan more attainable, but could potentially weaken Maserati's prestigious brand image.
The Stellantis-owned brand is preparing to introduce the GranTurismo Folgore very shortly. Thanks to four electric motors, the silent grand tourer is rumored to have as much as 1,200 horsepower at its disposal. This will reportedly allow it to hit 60 mph in less than three seconds and steam towards a top speed of 186 mph.
To be honest, the Ghibli's death isn't much to mourn over. Since its introduction, it's been an underwhelming vehicle that leaned heavily on its trident badge. We will, however, miss the full-size Quattroporte, a soulful sedan with a glorious V8 bark. But if the planned EV has anywhere near as much power as the previously mentioned Folgore, it should be something special to drive.