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Maserati lifts Chrysler tech

2011-07-28 10:50

NOT CUTTING IT: The current Quattroporte will be shelved to make way for two new, Chrysler-based models.

Luxury sports-car maker Maserati is hoping to boost its sales by raiding Chrysler and Jeep parts bins for its next two sedans and first constantly-rumoured SUV.

The news is the latest example of the increasing synergies in the Fiat (which owns Maserati) and Chrysler relationship in action. Group CEO Sergio Marchionne wants to increase its sports car unit’s annual sales from under 6000 to 50 000, Automotive News reports, and the three new models will be instrumental in achieving this.

Maserati will reportedly introduce the two new sedans to replace its range-topping Quattroporte – one larger and one smaller than the current car.

TWO QUATTROPORTES, ONE 'JEEP'


While the larger Quattroporte will be intended for the chauffeur-driven market to rival long-wheelbase versions of the Audi A8 and soon-to-be-replaced Mercedes-Benz S-Class, the smaller version will rival cars such as the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

The new sports sedans will be based on large Chrysler sedans, such as the 300, but will retain Maserati’s traditional longitudinal engine and rear-wheel drive.

Additionally, Maserati’s first SUV has finally received the green light, after the Kubang concept was first shown at the Detroit auto show in 2003, and will be built alongside Jeep’s Grand Cherokee. The latest concept is expected to debut at September’s Frankfurt auto show and go on sale in certain markets from 2013.

However, Maserati is adamant that its new models will not merely be rebadged Chrysler but will simply share certain components. All-important suspensions and powertrains and interior finishings will not be shared and Maserati will add all-wheel drive to certain models and stop/start technology to cut fuel consumption.
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