MASERATI'S SUV TESTING IN FRANSCHHOEK: Wheels24's Sean Parker spotted Maserati's SUV, the Levante undergoing testing in Franschhoek, Western Cape. Image: Wheels24/ Sean Parker
Cape Town - Eager to grab its share of the luxury SUV market, dominated by Porsche's Cayenne, Maserati will debut a new SUV later in 2016, the first for the automaker.
Wheels24 has exclusive photographs of Maserati's SUV, the Levante, being tested in Franschhoek, Western Cape.
Maserati South Africa did not divulge details on what type of testing its SUV is undergoing, however, they did confirm the Levante is expected to arrive locally in 2016.
The SUV, spotted parked along the town's main road, drew a crowd of onlookers.
The test units were clad in heavy camouflage with the drivers sporting Maserati-badged sweatshirts.
Earlier in January 2015, Wheels24 published spy shots of the Levante undergoing cold weather testing in the frozen forests of northern Scandinavia.
The Levante can be powered with a choice of two petrol engines and one diesel option.
They'll be a petrol twin-turbo 417kW V8 and a twin-turbo V6 delivering 260kW or 316kW, depending on version.
In terms of diesels, the possibilities include a V6 with three levels of power: 186kW, 205kW and 253kW.
The Levante will start to off the assembly line at Maserati’s factory in Mirafiori, Italy in 2016. Since Fiat is believed to have injected the equivalent of R13-billion into the project, expectations for the Levante SUV are quite high.