Fiat’s on again/off again plans for Alfa Romeo have led to an expansion in future plans for Maserati. While its name definitely has an exotic-car cachet in the marketplace, it for most of its history it has occupied a space below Ferrari.
Take for instance the Maserati Biturbo or Quattroporte, both areas Ferrari never dared to tread. Given this, instead of tainting the Ferrari name with a sedan or SUV, Maserati is taking that role.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee-based Kubang Concept (likely called Cinqueporte in production) is evidence of this. More is in the works though – a centerpiece being a smaller sedan to slot in below the Quattroporte. The new car would go up against the BMW 5-Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class; particularly the sporting versions of these cars.
Competing directly against the BMW M5, Cadillac CTS-V and Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG would preserve Maserati’s performance reputation. The as-yet-unnamed car would leave room for the Quattroporte to grow and move upmarket in price tag. The car would be a foot shorter than the Quattroporte.
Automobile Magazine has penned a new rendering of what the car could look like, and it is gorgeous. Underneath is Chrysler’s LY rear-wheel drive platform, but reworked for Maserati duty. Only the most basic platform components will be shared – from the sounds of it the car will be nothing like its Chrysler counterparts. Automobile spoke with Maserati chief engineer Harold Wester and he said “Every brand-relevant item will be developed from scratch….when there is a need to cooperate, it will happen internally among Maserati, Alfa Romeo, and Ferrari.
Automobile says the new sedan will include Maserati-developed braking, suspension and steering systems, as well as new engines. Instead of V-8s, the new Maserati sedan will be powered by a turbocharged MultiAir V-6. The new mid-size sedan as well as the Quattroporte are slated for a launch in 2013.