Editorial

Which Maserati Is The Better Car For Less Than $50,000?

Is the Ghibli better than the old Quattroporte?

For the 2014 model year, Maserati decided to move down market by building a sedan that was smaller than the Quattroporte. The resulting car was the Ghibli and, frankly, we were not impressed. We didn't think the Ghibli looked particularly good and as far as value goes, it was a class behind everything that it wanted to compete against. Back in 2014, the base Ghibli was offered for an MSRP of $67,000. This was the same money as a nicely equipped BMW 5 Series or Audi A6 for a car similar in size to a 3 Series or A4.

This price discrepancy grew even larger when you had to pay extra for things like bigger wheels that don't look like they belong on a Mazda 3. A nicely optioned Ghibli could cost well over $80,000, which is the same territory as the more powerful BMW 550i and Audi S6. For 2016, a brand new Ghibli costs $70,600. This is much less than the $106,900 Quattroporte, but we don't really recommend either of these cars. If you do really want a Ghibli, the best way to get one is used. You can now find a 2014 model for less than $50,000. However, this might not be the best Maserati sedan that you can buy for less than $50,000. Instead of the Ghibli, you may want to think about a used Quattroporte.

For less than $50,000, there are plenty of 2012 and older Maserati Quattroporte sedans for sale. So which one of these Italian sedans is the better value for less than $50K? Let's start with the newer Ghibli. The best one that we found for this price was a 2014 S Q4 at Central Florida Maserati. This AWD model features the more powerful 404 horsepower 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6. The car is painted white with a brown leather interior. It also has some bigger grey wheels that don't make it look like a rental car. With an eight-speed automatic going to all four wheels, the Ghibli can hit 60 mph in 4.8 seconds. How does this compare to the previous generation Quattroporte?

The 2012 Maserati Quattorporte S has a 425 horsepower 4.7-liter V8 engine. Power is put down to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic. The Ferrari engine gets the big sedan to 60 mph in the same time as the Ghibli, 4.8 seconds. Clearly performance doesn't separate these two, so how can we make a decision? Well, if technology is important to you, you can go out and pick the Ghibli right now. While many people complain that the Ghibli shares parts with a Chrysler, these parts are actually quite good. The 8.4-inch touch screen head unit, for example, may be the same that you get on a Dodge Dart, but it is one of the highest ranked systems on the market.

The old Quattorporte, on the other hand, features an almost incomprehensible system that looks like it should be a touchscreen but isn't. Thanks to the Fiat-Chrysler partnership, newer Maserati models are far easier to live with, but at the cost of being slightly less special. The V6 in the Ghibli sounds pretty good, but it does not come close to the glorious wail of the 4.7-liter Ferrari-built V8. If you want a car that feels hand-built and special, there is no competition here. The old Quattroporte feels far more unique than the newer Ghibli. If you prefer a car that FCA says is about as good as an Audi, get the Ghibli. But if you want what is basically a four-door Ferrari, get the Quattroporte.

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