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Maserati Gran Turismo 2009 Review

Price no object, what car would you buy? A Ferrari, a Lambo, a Roller, perhaps a Bentley? In my case, Maserati's stunning Gran Turismo S auto would be on a very short list if I had around $330,000 to spend. Yes, the automatic.

A work of automotive art, the Pininfarina-styled Gran Turismo (GT) exudes an aura of power and class, of controlled aggression. There's even a hint of American muscle car about its flanks.

The superb, flowing exterior lines are matched by a high standard of craftsmanship inside and out from the people who build it, and that too is matched by the quality of the components used — nothing but the best.

The Maser GT is a true GT in that it's an imposing long distance coupe with seats for four, supersports performance and handling and the luxury accoutrements you'd expect in a limousine.

It adds up to a hefty 1880kg weight but with the 4.7-litre V8 engine up front kicking out 323Kw/490Nm, urge is not an issue here. It puts away a 0-100kmh sprint in 5.0 seconds neat and generates a stirring V8 burble/blatt into the bargain.

The naturally aspirated engine features variable inlet valve timing and has a redline of 7250rpm. The thing to note here is the six-speed ZF auto is calibrated to change up at redline thereby contributing to the GT's performance potential. Most autos run out of legs well before redline. It also has Ferrari-style paddle shift levers on the steering column and multi modes to change how it swaps cogs.

The suspension is a version of the electronically controlled “Skyhook” system and is adaptive to certain inputs from the road, driver and car itself. Push the Sport button on the dash and it goes into attack mode which allows the big coupe to be driven spiritedly on demanding roads.

On test, the level of enjoyment driving this car was as high as just about anything else we have driven including real hotrods like the new Nissan GTR and German uber-cars— BMW's M3, Benz's C63AMG and Audi's RS4/6.

Not as outright quick, the big Maser is a deft hand in the tight stuff and gets on the boil really fast. The engine howls up to redline willingly and the big coupe's dynamics are right up to the task, even the brakes but then it does roll on 20-inch rubber of extreme proportions. This is all aided and abetted by the slick changing transmission that wills you to use the paddles and not just leave it in D.

There's plenty of kit inside the Poltrona Frau leather-clad interior — 3D satnav, electric seats, Bose audio, Bluetooth. And it's styled to match the stunning exterior — certainly as appealing as other high-end stuff, some of which costs plenty more.

Befitting a true GT is the 86-litre tank that saps a bit of boot space but there's still enough for a couple of medium size bags. No spare is supplied — it's a tyre inflation kit for the Maser GT. Fuel consumption hovers around the 15-litres/100km mark so there's plenty of range available.

It has a low front that can be problematic on driveways and there's a long stretch for the seat belts. Rear seat room is surprisingly generous — even for an adult. The GT attracts admiring looks wherever it goes and the attention is certainly justified. Sensible but awesome, sexy and svelte, this car is a piece of work. It looks a million bucks from any angle and backs up the eye candy with performance that may startle.

Pricing guides

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Range and Specs

(base) 4.2L, PULP, 6 SP SEQ $50,100 – 63,360 2009 Maserati Granturismo 2009 (base) Pricing and Specs
S 4.7L, PULP, 6 SP SEQ AUTO $67,000 – 84,700 2009 Maserati Granturismo 2009 S Pricing and Specs
Pricing Guide


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