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King Neptune would be proud! Maserati enters a new era with self-built 464kW V6 engine

2020-07-03 11:30

Charlen Raymond

Maserati Nettuno

Maserati Nettuno (MotorPress)

• Maserati builds new 3.0-litre V6 engine.

• Engine to debut in upcoming MC20 super sports car.

• Maserati began building cars in 1926.

What's been an open secret for the longest time, Maserati will unveil its first new mass-production sports car in September 2020. Called the MC20, the super sports car will herald a new era for the Italian automaker and reestablish it as a serious player in the highly-competitive world of sports cars.

While we wait with bated breath for the September moment to arrive, Maserati released the first details about the MC20; that being the engine. Called the Nettuno, the engine is built entirely by Maserati (that's right, no input by Ferrari) at its factory in Modena, Italy.

It's a work of art, according to Maserati, and the automaker is undoubtedly hoping that it will entice the automotive world on what's to come next.

Maserati's new engine displaces 3.0-litres and produces a hefty 464kW and 730Nm - the latter available from 3000rpm. Maserati says that this engine has a specific power output of 156kW/litre. That's insane, which should see the MC20, theoretically, have stellar performance.

Achieving these outputs, the engine has a compression ratio of 11:1, with a stroke and bore of 82mm and 88mm, respectively. Given that the fuel that's injected into the engine at 350bar, you begin to understand how Maserati managed to extract that amount of power from the twin-turbo engine.

READ: Maserati SA shares news on its all-new MC20 super sports car, 2020 plans

Maserati says the engine has three main features that adopts technologies used in Formula 1:

• The pre-chamber: a combustion chamber is set between the central electrode and the traditional combustion chamber and connected by a series of specially-designed holes.

• Lateral sparkplug: a traditional sparkplug acts as a support to ensure constant combustion when the engine is operating at a level that doesn't need the pre-chamber to kick in.

• Twin injection system – direct and indirect: linked to the fuel supply pressure at 350bar, the system reduces noise low down on the rev range, lowering emissions, and improving consumption.

Maserati Nettuno

Maserati Nettuno (MotorPress)

The Trident connection

In 1914, the Maserati brothers began an engineering workshop in Bologna, Italy. Named after the eldest brother, 'Officine Alfieri Maserati' focused its working on altering cars built by other automakers. After 12 years of business, the brothers began building their own cars, and Maserati would go on to become one of the most recognizable names in automotive history.

In 2014, Maserati, as a company, celebrated its 100th birthday, and in 2026 they'll celebrate the centennial of building cars.

But why the trident as a badge? In the middle of Bologna, is one of the most famous landmarks of the town, the Fountain of Neptune. Neptune, according to Roman mythology, is the god of sea and earthquakes, and the Maserati brothers adopted Neptune's trident as its emblem. This is a symbolic connection to their hometown. In 1937, 13 years after car production, Maserati moved its offices to Modena, about an hour's drive from their original home.

Maserati Levante Trofeo
2020 Maserati Levante Trofeo (Maserati Media)
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