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Maserati Ghibli: Posssibly a better choice than its German Competitors?

The numbers:

  • MSRP $67,500
  • Bi turbo V6 or V6 Diesel 
  • 345hp @ 5,000rpm
  • 0-60mph 5.6 secs
  • 118in Wheelbase

The Ghibli namesake has returned after almost 30 years of being forgotten. Maserati’s new 5 series and E class fighter has got some proving to do, but is it worth giving up $60-$80k? That’s what I’m here to find out. At first glance the Ghibli can easily be confused for a Quattroporte, with its Italian styling and four doors. I suppose that is the new trend in the auto world; making smaller cars loosely based off their big sisters. Now that Fiat is the owner of Chrysler you can expect lots of Chrysler borrowed equipment in this new car-and that is exactly the case. The Ghibli offers a remote start function which is taken directly from its American counterpart and the dashboard and window operation switches are a direct copy and paste from what is currently available in the new 300 and Charger models. Not surprising, the feel of the car is actually rather clean and simply laid out. Evidence of the merger is present throughout the vehicle; overall I get a very familiar Chrysler-esque feel from behind the wheel.

Moving on to the power, the Ghibli has no problem putting the Ferrari-built 345 horses to the ground via either an all-wheel drive (Q4) option or the good ol’ hairy chested RWD set up. Throttle response is very nippy once you get it up to speed, yet the steering is terrible; very loose feeling as you attempt to put it through curves. Maserati has a neat power transfer unit in the Q4 AWD version, which sends power to the front axle when the road conditions call for it. One thing that makes me a little irritated is that even in the top of the range version there are no steering wheel mounted paddle shifters; they’re only available at an additional cost- a poor decision considering all the German automakers have paddle shifters as standard. Another annoying bit is the overly sensitive gear selector, you must be very careful when changing to reverse, if you put too much pressure you will end up shifting to park. Not surprising the gear selector is borrowed technology from Chrysler.  

The Ghibli has two choices of engines; a gas powered V6 twin-turbo and a diesel. You want the V6 gas version; you have to be an imbecile to purchase a diesel from Maserati. Of course this is because the 5 series, A6 and E class have far more advanced diesel technology over Maserati. All in all the Maserati Ghibli is not a bad car, per say, but it is not quite as good as it should be.

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