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Mazzer's stunning four-door GT S

2009-05-22 06:18
Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Maserati
Model Quattroporte Sport GT S
Engine 4.7l V8
Power 323kW @ 7 000r/min
Torque 490Nm @ 4 750r/min
Transmission Six-speed auto
Zero To Hundred 5.1 seconds
Top Speed 285km/h
Fuel Tank 90l
Weight 1 880kg
The world’s most desirable performance saloon, Maserati’s Quattroporte Sport is now available in GT S trim.

First seen on the motor show circuit late last year, Maserati has released final specifications for the road going version.

Until Aston Martin’s Rapide debuts towards the end of this year, Maserati’s Quattroporte will unashamedly remain the most evocative looking four-door performance saloon around.

Now, thanks to the GT S package’s enhanced engine power and transmission functionality, supported by a revised suspension system, performance enthusiasts burdened by family companionship, and who refuse to compromise with regards to style, have even less reason to consider alternatives.

The GT S styling embellishments cue strongly from the GranTurismo two-door, with new concave slats adorning the black grille – adding significantly to the Quattroporte’s overtaking presence.

Maserati’s renowned trident badge, taking pride of place in the centre of the grille and on the C-pillars, features red accents on the Quattroporte GT S.

Along the flanks of the new car, Maserati’s shadow line design is perceptible too, which surrounds the doors with black frame finishes. Around the rear, dual oval exhausts tips round off the body styling package.

Beyond the styling upgrades, Quattroporte GT S features some very neat mechanical engineering improvements too.

Lowered (and harsher?) suspension set-up

The first of these curiously exacerbates a pending issue - ride quality, especially considering the Quattroporte GT S rolls on 19-inch standard alloy wheels. A reconfigured damping system has been employed to partly offset some of the dynamic foibles as result of those massive diameter wheels.

By reducing ride height by 15mm on the front axle and 11mm at the rear, the suspension set-up, which features less rebound compliant springs, improves traction and steering response.

Negligible power upgrade, notable engine noise

Underneath the elongated bonnet – which is peculiarly long despite the engine’s aft front-axle placement – Maserati’s oversquare 4.7l V8 boasts six additional kW.

Producing 323kW at 7 000r/min (compared to other 4.7 Quattroportes 317kW) and 490Nm of peak rotational force at 4 750r/min (an unchanged figure), the primary benefit of this GT S tuned engine is acoustically measured, thanks to Maserati’s second notable mechanical upgrade on the latest Quattroporte.

Engineered with pneumatically actuated valves occupying position at a key juncture in the performance exhaust system, gas flow can be channelled along a less restrictive (and shorter) route during liberal throttle applications, ensuring a characteristically Maserati, neighbourhood waking, exhaust note.

A software upgrade for the six-speed automatic gearbox ushers in MC auto shift capability with Start Strategy – Maserati’s incarnation of launch control.

With Start Strategy engaged, releasing the brake pedal with between 2 300- and 2 500r/min of engine speed dialled in will bring down the 0-100km/h sprint time from 5.3- to 5.1 seconds.

Titanium and Alcantara interior?

Maserati’s interior design is not as ostentatious as during the heady days of their pre-1993 independence, yet the GT S features new M-design sport seats covered with perforated Alcantara and leather.

Trim might appear to be carbon-fibre (it’s an option) yet in fact it’s a titanium effect composite material, rendering a 3D effect, called Titanex.

The option list is disappointingly long unfortunately, with the 30GB Bose multi-media entertainment system, grippy aluminium pedals, 20-inch wheels, painted brake callipers and sunroof all optional.

True to its billing as Maserati’s performance orientated four-door, the Quattroporte GT S features larger, more ergonomically intuitive active shifting steering paddles, facilitating easier up- and down-shifts when driving at the limit.

It might be down on power compared to Audi’s RS range, BMW’s Ms or Merc’s AMG four doors, but with such sinful looks and a tortured demon exhaust note, does that really matter?

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