Maserati isn’t unveiling the 2014 Ghibli until the upcoming Shanghai Motor Show, but it is giving the Internet an early peak. The Ghibli will slot below the big Quattroporte in both size and price, which Maserati hopes will boost its sales.
The Ghibli is a BMW 5 Series to the Quattroporte’s 7 Series, and what a difference that reduction in size makes. There’s a familial resemblance, but the Ghibli looks slimmer and sportier than the already-attractive Quattroporte. Check out those curvy fenders.
To wit, Maserati says the Ghibli will have a “sportier character” than the Quattroporte. The big sedan isn’t exactly a slouch, but we reckon the reduction in both dimensions and weight will make the Ghibli a more entertaining drive.
The Ghibli will be sold with two turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine options. One of these may be the twin-turbocharged and direct-injected unit that makes 404 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque in the Quattroporte.
In a first for Maserati, the Ghibli will also be offered with a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6. Some might consider a diesel Maserati sacrilege, but in a world of diesel Porsche SUVs, nothing is sacred.
The only transmission option will be an eight-speed automatic. Rear-wheel drive will be standard, with Maserati’s Q4 all-wheel drive system as an option.
Maserati hopes the Ghibli will allow it to compete with more mainstream brands like BMW and Mercedes-Benz, and rack up similar sales volumes. Maserati sold 6,200 cars last year, but it hopes to sell 50,000 cars per year soon.
Since it’s such an important car, it’s fitting that Maserati gave the Ghibli one of its most hallowed names. The original 1967 Ghibli coupe and 1969 Ghibli Spyder are still admired for their beauty decades after they left the factory.
Will people still long for the four-door Ghibli 50 years from now? We’ll get a better idea when the silks come off at the Shanghai Motor Show later this month.