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The trident Grecale-brates

Maserati expands its lineup with a luxe compact crossover

MODENA MOTORSPORTS, INC., the official Maserati importer and dealer in the Philippines, recently presented the Grecali crossover. This offering from the luxury Italian car maker slots beneath the bigger Levante, and is expected to further grow the universe of clients in the country. Indeed, the crossover model is said to be part of the trident brand’s efforts to broaden its offerings.

The Grecale, named after a northeastern Mediterranean wind, is said to “strike the right balance of versatility, elegance, performance and innovation — guaranteeing performance, comfort, and safety.” The qualities are married with off-road capabilities and “uncompromising driving pleasure.” The vehicle underwent development at the Maserati Innovation Lab in Modena, Italy, and units are produced at the Stellantis-owned Cassino plant.

Maserati Philippines shared that the Grecale comes with either a conventional internal combustion or a mild hybrid system. “In a year’s time, Grecale will also be the first full-electric SUV in Maserati history,” the company continued in a release.

On display at the media launch event was the GT variant, powered by a four-cylinder mild hybrid engine capable of delivering 300hp. The model is priced at around P8.5 million. The more powerful Trofeo is also available, which is fitted with a high-performance 3.0-liter V6 making up to 530hp petrol V6 based on the Nettuno engine fitted to the MC20. Another trim, the Modena, which comes with a four-cylinder 330hp mild hybrid engine, will be available for indent ordering. The Grecale is also available in the PrimaSerie Launch Edition, a limited edition featuring exclusive content.

In a statement, Maserati Asia Pacific Head Takayuki Kimura, who was in town for the launch, said, “Grecale embodies a perfect blend of sportiness and sophistication. As the inaugural offering for a new segment of Maserati, we are very excited to bring Grecale to the Philippines to turn everyday journeys into extraordinary driving experiences.”

The company insists that the Grecale “sports best-in-class levels of interior space; drivability; handling; acceleration (with a standstill-to-100kph time of 3.8 seconds on the Trofeo); top speed (285kph on the Trofeo); sound quality; and extensive use of fine materials such as wood, carbon fiber and leather.”

The Grecale GT stretches 4,846mm, and boasts a wheelbase of 2,901mm, 1,670mm height, 2,163mm width (including wing mirrors), and a rear wheel track of 1,948mm.

The model design, particularly its front grille, calls to mind the MC20 as it “embraces Maserati’s new visual symbol.” The profile is described as being highly fluid, and its technical components are “highlighted with carbon fiber.” Boomerang taillights are inspired by the Giugiaro 3200 GT and fit in with the trapezoidal line.

Inside, the Grecale sports a traditional Maserati clockface, which is made digital for the first time.

“Everything becomes touch-based, with extreme aesthetic cleanliness. The technology is controlled from the displays: the large 12.3-inch central screen, the largest ever seen in a Maserati, another 8.8-inch display for the extra controls and a third for the passengers in the rear seats,” reported Maserati. The in-car sound is courtesy of an “immersive” Sonus faber 3D sound system which employs 14 speakers — upgradeable to 21.

A Vehicle Dynamic Control Module (VDCM) system gives “360-degree control” over the car, and the Grecale offers distinct drive modes: Comfort, GT, Sport, CORSA (in the Trofeo only) and Off-road.

In an interview with “Velocity,” Modena Motorsports President Sam Versoza said that Maserati’s showroom facility on EDSA will be opening in two to three months, ahead of a larger “multi-floor showroom” in the Primex Tower on EDSA corner Connecticut Avenue in San Juan City. “We’re just completing the flooring, finishing, and interiors,” he shared.

Mr. Versoza also revealed that, before the end of the year, Maserati Philippines will bring in the GranTurismo sports car. The executive also expressed confidence in the company’s directional shift to electric. “We’ll start with hybrid then we’ll slowly shift to electric even here,” he said. An all-electric Grecale is expected to be produced by next year.

As for the virtues of Maserati versus its premium market rivals, Mr. Versoza averred, “You really can’t compare. It’s something that not everyone can have — like expensive bags and watches that are exclusive.”

He concluded, “I’m confident that this will be the best year of Maserati.”

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