JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – The spark of electrification has ignited Maserati’s future with the addition of a Ghibli Hybrid to the Trident brand.
”The Ghibli Hybrid,” Maserati says, ”is one of our most ambitious projects which, after the announcement of a new engine for the MC20 super sport car, now takes another step towards our new era.”
Maserati told The Corner in a media release that the decision to introduce hybrid technology on the Ghibli sedan was no coincidence: ”This model, with more than 100 000 units produced since launch in 2013, perfectly embodies our Modena-based manufacturer’s DNA.
”In fact, the challenge facing Maserati was to enter the world of electrification without altering the brand’s core philosophy and values.
”The result? The creation of the best-possible hybrid. What’s more, the Ghibli Hybrid will retain the unmistakable sound that has always distinguished every Maserati.
”The arrival of the battery-boosted Ghibli,” the classic automaker says, ”thus expands the Maserati range to become even more competitive and responsive to the demands of the market.”
There’s no doubt about the new Ghibli’s identity, Maserati says. ”Thanks in part to the re-design of both exterior and interior – common denominators of the restyling developed by the Centro Stile – is the blue colour, chosen to identify all cars with hybrid technology and the new world they inhabit.”
Externally, Maserati says, the blue characterises the three iconic side air ducts, the brake callipers and the thunderbolt in the oval that encloses the Trident on the rear pillar. ”The same blue reappears inside the car, in particular on the embroidered seams of the seats.”
The new Ghibli Hybrid also introduces stylistic content, starting with a new grille, with bars redesigned to represent a tuning fork, a musical device that emits a sound of extreme purity.
”That, in turn, evokes the Trident symbol itself.”
The rear of the car also bears significant changes, we’re told, with the light clusters completely restyled, with a boomerang-like profile inspired by the 3200 GT and the Alfieri concept car.
Maserati is, after all, a builder of sport cars. ”So, in perfect harmony with its DNA, we chose a hybrid solution focused on improving performance, while also reducing fuel-consumption and exhaust emissions.
”The hybrid technology exploits kinetic energy which the car accumulates while in motion by recovering it and transforming it into electricity during deceleration and braking, and storing it in a battery.”
READ NINE MORE Maserati features on Carman’s Corner
Maserati says the powertrain is the outcome of in-depth engineering development work by technicians and engineers at its Innovation Lab in Modena, Italy. It combines a two-litre, turbocharged, four-cylinder, internal combustion engine with a 48-volt alternator and an additional electric supercharger supported by a battery.
”This solution,” say the team from Modena, ”is unique in its segment, the first in a new generation of powertrains, and with the perfect trade-off between performance, efficiency and driving pleasure.”
The battery is mounted in the rear of the car, with benefits in terms of improved weight distribution, yet the cars weigh about 80kg less than the diesel Ghibli.
”Thanks to maximum power output of 246kW and torque of 450Nm delivered from 1500rpm,” Maserati says, ”this new Ghibli’s performance data are very impressive: top speed 255km/h and acceleration to 100km/h takes 5.7 seconds.
”On the move, the Hybrid’s occupants will still revel in the unmistakable sound that characterises all Maserati models, thanks to the optimised exhaust, which includes specially designed resonators.”
The Ghibli Hybrid introduces not only a new powertrain but also a new Maserati Connect program which enables constant connection with the car. ”The information exchange continues when on the move, to improve the services offered to the driver. As well as updating the software packages, the system performs checks on the car and monitors its emergency services.”
An ”intelligent assistant” multimedia system, based on digital input from Android Automotive, software is said to deliver a customisable user experience.
The multimedia system’s high-definition screen, with new graphics, is user-friendly and increased in size from 21 to 26cm. A new instrument panel with digital devices and new graphics has also been introduced.
…and a final word from your host…
MORE TO COME IN 2021
”The new Ghibli Hybrid is but the first step in a plan that will lead to the electrification of all new Maserati models.
”The brand’s first all-electric cars will be the new GranTurismo and GranCabrio. Just wait for 2021…!