Maserati: Past, Present, Electrification

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Beauty can be reflected in a jewel, a painting or a landscape. Elegance, on the other hand, is not only confined to a glance.  Elegance can be found in a movement, in an expression or in conversation. Simply put, elegance is beauty in motion, the premise for design and vision that encapsulates the Maserati brand.

Implementing its plans this month for the electrification of its range, they also plan to enhance their signature by developing a sound that will characterise the electric powered vehicle propulson.  The new Maserati GranTurismo and GranCabrio will be the brand’s first cars to adopt 100% electric solutions and will be built at the Turin production hub.

The 105 year history of Maserati in numbers:

The Maserati brothers were passionate about mechanical engineering and loved speed, quite happy to get behind the wheel of a racing car themselves, despite their many technical and commercial commitments.  Another brother, Mario, contributed by creating the famous Trident logo (inspired by the Fountain of Neptune in the centre of Bologna) and their brother Bindo joined Officine Maserati in 1932, after Alfieri’s death.

  • 105 years in operation, 80 of them at the Modena plant
  • 1914: “Alfieri Maserati” founded on 1 December
  • 1926: production of the Tipo 26, the first car to bear the Trident Brand
  • 1939: Maserati moves to Modena
  • 2001: return to the US. Key market for Maserati
  • 2013: Avv. Giovanni Agnelli Plant (AGAP) in Grugliasco (TO) was opened on January 30
  • 2016: car number 100,000 is built at the Avv. Giovanni Agnelli Plant (AGAP) at Grugliasco (TO)
  • 2016: start of production of Maserati Levante at Mirafiori (TO)
  • 2019: the 100,000th Ghibli is produced at the Avv. Giovanni Agnelli Plant (AGAP) at Grugliasco (TO)

The Royale Series: A salute to the past

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Maserati paid tribute to its heritage with the launch of a special series bearing the same name of their 1986 Royale version of the 3rd generation Quattroporte.  It’s available in two unique blue and green colours: Blu Royale and Verde Royale. To complete the elegant exterior look, the Levante Royale features 21” Anteo Staggered Anthracite rims and Titanium Anthracite rims on Ghibli and Quattroporte, all bespoke for the series, and all with silver brake calipers.

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The Royale interiors, based on the GranLusso trim were born of old-world Italian traditions and today’s innovative technology.  It was ingeniously fashioned using thin strips of Nappa leather to create an ultra-luxurious “fabric” that is lightweight, soft and durable.  High Gloss inserts (Metal Net for the Levante, Ebony for the Ghibli and Black Piano for the Quattroporte) and a distinctive “One of 100” plate complete the interior look, which also features the Bowers&Wilkins Sound System, electric sunroof and privacy glass.

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The Royale Special Series comes with extensive equipment, thanks to the Cold Weather, Premium and Drving Assistance Plus Packages fitted as standard. Whether driving down city streets or taking part in an exclusive grand tour, high-powered luxury will be met with greater-than-ever safety on the road.

The limited edition of 100 units become available in March.

Multi70: Transferring car technology into a super yacht

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The Multi70 was a Maserati first involving the transfer of technological know-how from the world of cars to the world of high-performance yachts: the engineers of the Maserati Innovation Lab in Modena and Giovanni Soldini, skipper of Maserati Multi 70 culminating in a prestigious race.

Organized by the Royal Cape Yacht Club and held every two or three years, the Cape2Rio is the Southern Hemisphere’s longest intercontinental yacht race.  The original course starts in Cape Town and arrives in Rio de Janeiro, but for some editions the finish line has been moved to other destinations: in the years of protests against the Apartheid the race finished in Punta del Este, Uruguay, and, in 2006 and 2009, in Salvador de Bahia, Brazil.

The camouflaged experiment: Road to electric dreams

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The first “mule” for the development of the new Maserati powertrain was driven out of the Viale Ciro Menotti gates in November last year, becoming the forefather of a new family of engines integrated exclusively on the vehicles of the brand.  The data acquired through the kilometres covered by the mules was integrated with the experience gathered in the Maserati Innovation Lab driving simulators, the most advanced in the world.   This working methodology fine-tunes and develops the prototypes with final bodywork and mechanics.

Inside the Modena plant: Creating the cars of tomorrow

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So much hype as the big reveal takes place in May later this year.  In the leadup a handful of media and guests were invited in for a taste of what is to come, complete with bedroom suite in the middle of the production plant fully immersing oneself into the process.

WhatsApp Image 2020-01-28 at 8.05.33 PM.jpegMajor modernisation is already under way on the production line, to also accommodate for the electric version, as well as the construction of a new painting line. 

The Modena factory, the home of Maserati for 80 years, is a magical place that combines the Maserati heritage and “made in Italy” DNA along with a strong drive towards the future and innovation: it is in this very place that the long-awaited new super-sports car planned for 2020 will be built.

Furthermore, an important step for Maserati innovation is the level of Autonomous Driving. All new Maserati including the updated current models, will offer a range of autonomous driving capabilities, starting with Maserati Level 2 enhanced Highway Assist progressing to Level 3 with hands-off offering close to full autonomy, having the ability to maneuver in and out of lanes or bring the vehicle to a safe stop at the side of the road if the driver is unable to take control of the vehicle.

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Static Simulator
The Static Simulator is the starting point for every experience in the Maserati realm of simulation.  It’s composed of a cockpit, three projectors and high computational power. It is a simple system that helps engineers, from the very initial phase of the development process, obtain immediate feedback from the driver, and makes a major contribution to new model validation. Real subsystems such as steering and braking, ABS and ESC can be added in, to create tests that connect physical and simulated components to provide a test-bed for developing all the characteristics of a new vehicle.  Driver assist systems can be developed, trialled and validated in a safe environment by reproducing the complex scenarios which may arise anywhere in the world.

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Dynamic Simulator with latest generation DiM (Driver-in-Motion) technology
The Dynamic Simulator enables full exploitation of systems’ integration thanks to the evolution of proprietary control strategies, cutting development times and costs. It also helps to reduce the number of prototypes and ensures that the Virtual Sign-Off is very close to the final product.  The simulator makes it possible to test cars on various racetracks on the same day.  Modifications to the vehicle can be made with a few simple clicks and this greatly simplifies the analysis of the data gathered.

Another particularly interesting characteristic is a very thin cushion of air which makes the entire platform float over the pavement, enabling dynamic, silent and continuous movement thanks to the electric actuators.

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The “User eXperience” development labs
The Maserati driver simulator hub includes a lab dedicated to vehicle ergonomics, enabling accurate reproduction of driving posture, visibility and interactions with the on-board controls and displays, and where the vehicle under development can be driven in any scenario with the utmost realism.  The “User eXperience” development labs support the integrated development of ergonomics, the human-machine interface and the vehicle’s perceived quality for genuine “user-centred design” dedicated to delivering the distinctive Maserati user experience.

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