The venerable Maserati brand breaks new ground by introducing its first SUV, a market-conquering behemoth that does it all.
Think of Maserati and you're likely to conjure images of slender sports cars, delicately-drawn roadsters that are built for tracks and sweeping bends that travel down the side of Italian mountains. It's fair to say that the Levante's sizeable frame is a departure of sorts, but you don't have to look too closely to see the Maserati genes in full effect. The narrow Maserati grille still screams speed, whilst the slim headlights and gentle curves of the bodywork mean that this is a big, beautiful SUV that retains the charms and focus on beauty of its stable mates.
Despite its size, the new Maserati Levante is an SUV that places an emphasis on comfort and style, and nowhere is this more apparent than the car's interior. For a start, you can reduce the noise levels inside by adjusting the suspension, creating a calm, quiet and comfortable place to sit in your well-stuffed, leather bucket seats. The elegant dashboard is home to an 8.4-inch infotainment screen, but there is plenty of space elsewhere, with several storage bins and a boot capacity of 580 litres.
As you would expect from a Maserati, the new Levante is a car that is capable of being very fast indeed, regardless of its SUV styling and bearing. The Levante comes equipped with a 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine that will take it from 0-60mph in less than 6.9 seconds, thanks to 271bhp.
Primarily, SUVs are considered to be a way of giving yourself and your passengers extra protection on the roads. The Levante is no exception and, being a Maserati, it offers a range of impressive safety features.
For a start there is Maserati's Lane Departure Warning System, which alerts the driver if it detects a drift across lane boundaries, allowing you to regain focus and correct your course. Even more impressive is the Adaptive Cruise Control, which allows the Levante to keep a predetermined amount of space between itself and the car in front, braking and speeding up when necessary to match the flow of traffic.
MARSHALL MASERATI PETERBOROUGH