Maserati Quattroporte At Detroit Motor Show
Maserati Quattroporte Automatic At Detroit Motor Show
Maserati has started the New Year with the official launch of the Maserati Quattroporte Automatic at the Detroit International Motor Show, a significant new version of the model which is already the most successful Maserati of all time and which is set to considerably increase Quattroporte sales.
Given the importance of the US market for Maserati, it is no surprise that this is the second time that Maserati has chosen the United States for the official presentation to the public of one of its models.
“From the debut of the Maserati Coupé in 2002 up until now with the launch of the Quattroporte Automatic, the States represent a challenge for the Trident brand, being the most competitive market in the entire car business and at the same time a place where the Modena factory has registered one sales record after another in the past few years”, says Roberto Ronchi, CEO and General Manager of Maserati Spa.
“The Quattroporte Automatic, moreover, is a car that can be said to be well suited for the North American market, where customers are used to long journeys and are particularly attentive to driving comfort.”
If the exterior design and the interior maintain the style and elegance that have made the Trident flagship an unmistakable and multiple award-winning car, the mechanical side benefits from the great innovation that Maserati presents today in Detroit.
First of all, the new hydraulic 6-speed transmission, a result of the collaboration between Maserati and ZF, is entirely new and has been designed to guarantee fluid gear changes and exceptional driving comfort. The new lay-out of the transmission system emphasizes the progressive power delivery of the Maserati V8 engine particularly at low engine speed without limiting its power.
The weight balance has been consequently modified, but the new distribution (49%-51%) is still ideal, and unique amongst its competitors, maintaining the segment leading performance characteristics for which Maserati has become renown.
The new range is also enriched by new options: two new colors are presented for the body (Granite Grey and Ocean Blue) and a new type of wood, tanganika, while the interior now can be ordered in a two tone color scheme.
The Quattroporte Automatic, alongside the Quattroporte with the DuoSelect gearbox, is offered also in the Executive GT version, which enhances luxury and driving comfort, and Sport GT, that emphasizes the sporty characteristics of the car.
Automatic seals the worldwide success of the
• 9000 units sold to date, a record setting car for Maserati;
• 28 awards in the three years since its debut;
• Over 90% sales increase in North America in 2005, with volumes maintained in 2006;
• A car which returned a 2.5 million dollar winning bid at auction in November 2006 (Reach Out to Asia) benefiting school children in the Middle East and Asia.
2006 – A Year Of
Growth And Consolidation
2006 was characterized for Maserati by a global strategy of stabilization on all fronts, within the firm and externally. The commercial results closed in line with the objectives that were declared at the beginning of the year and show a stabilization of the volumes of the previous year, with 5700 units delivered to the dealer network.
The alignment of the commercial results of the past two years represented a phase of growth and stabilization in preparation of the bright moment of development that will see Maserati as leader, starting from 2007, with a completely renewed product range.
Equally important are the confirmations obtained in relation to markets and products: the United States remains the lead market for Maserati, accounting for approximately 45% of the global turnover at the end of 2006. Italy remains the second leading market for Maserati, and is confirmed as the European leader.
The strengthening strategy concerned primarily the youngest markets, in particular those of Eastern Europe and the Far East. The results are significant and confirm the growth trend: +65% in China, where the success has been completed by the wide approval received at the Motorshow in Peking, where, at the end of November, ten Quattroporte were sold. The sales growth in Russia was 55%, 36% in Spain and 18% in Australia, giving Maserati its best ever year ‘Down Under’.
The success in the Unites States is related to the global success of Maserati, present today in 58 countries on five continents, with a total network of over 259 dealers. New openings have taken place in key cities like Milan, Moscow, Kiev and Taipei. Bulgaria was the last market to open, in November.
2006 saw also the strengthening of the factory’s infrastructure, with particular reference to the Quality Department, that today can count on the newest technological instruments and accounts for almost 10% of the entire Maserati workforce.
Equally significant in reference to the growth and expansion of the firm is the cooperation of Maserati with Alfa Romeo for the production of the Alfa 8C Competizione.
The return in black as the declared objective for 2007 comes alongside the reduction of losses registered in 2006 thanks to the efficiencies obtained on industrial costs and infrastructure.
Maserati in North
“North America is proud to play an integral role in the global success of Maserati, helping the brand re-establish itself as a producer of advanced products of style and substance. Maserati has found a dedicated client base in this market and is growing the awareness of our products through targeted initiatives across our business" commented James Selwa, President and CEO of Maserati North America.
“We are proud that Maserati has become a competitive, credible choice in the US$100,000 plus range. True to its heritage, the modern Maserati is recognized not only for great performance, but also for timeless Italian style.” continued Selwa.
In 2007 Maserati North America expects the Quattroporte Automatic range to help reach an even larger segment of consumers while the models equipped with the DuoSelect transmission will continue to appeal to the current more performance oriented customer.
Maserati North America expanded its reach in 2006 with the opening of two high profile locations in the Southern California market where it derives 35% percent of sales. Maserati currently benefits from 47 dealers across North America. In 2007 the expansion of the dealer network will continue with new retail points in other strategically important regions. Maserati North America is proud to have the top selling dealer in the world, The Collection in Coral Gables Florida. The southeast is the second leading region for Maserati in the US followed by the New York Tri-State area. Maserati North America also has a corporate facility in the San Francisco Bay Area in Marin County.
Maserati Financial Services
Maserati North America announces the formation of a captive finance unit, Maserati Financial Services Corp., in collaboration with CNH Capital, the financial services business company of CNH Global N.V. (NYSE:CNH), a firm under the control of the parent company Fiat SpA (FIA.MI; NYSE:FIA) and a maker of agricultural and construction equipment,
Maserati North America will significantly benefit from this new business initiative which provides competitive financing for all Maserati models and a range of financial instruments to help to consolidate further Maserati’s position in North America.
On November 1, 2006 Maserati Financial Services became the preferred financing source for Maserati dealers throughout the U.S. Participating dealers will begin to offer retail financing and flexible leasing programs designed exclusively for Maserati customers. Maserati FS will be operated as a stand-alone division of CNH Capital, with a staff of specialists dedicated to serving the purchasing needs of customers.
A Successful Product Range
In addition of the Quattroporte Automatic, Maserati displays at the NAIAS in Detroit the Quattroporte Sport GT with the DuoSelect gearbox, which is still preferred by the most sporting oriented customers. The Sport GT version, with interior carbon-fiber finish, 20’’ alloy wheel rims, aluminums pedals, comes alongside the Executive GT version, focused on luxury, offering a black chrome front grille ball polished alloy wheels and interior equipment dedicated to more demanding customers that focus on driving comfort.
The GranSport, not offered in North America for 2007, remains the car for those who are looking for high performance and speed. The successful sales results and the wide press approval confirm the cars winning formula, even a few years after his public debut.
As a demonstration of Maserati’s technologic excellence and enormous potential as a super-car producer, there is the MC12 Versione Corse, based on the MC12 GT1 and produced in 12 units, which are designed to be used exclusively on track during private test sessions or during events and activities organized by Maserati. The car, with a price of over €1,000,000, has been in the market since autumn 2006.
2006, A Year Full Of Racing Triumphs
2006 was for Maserati a year full of racing successes. Maserati had a spectacular finish to the FIA GT Championship, with 5 victories over 10 competitions, among which the mythical Spa – Francorchamps 24 Hour Race, one of the most difficult and prestigious endurance races, won by the MC12 driven by Michael Bartels, Andrea Bertolini and Eric van de Poele.
The Spa 24 Hour triumph came together with the victories at Silverstone (UK), Oschersleben (Germany), Digione (France) and Adria (Italy), where Bartels and Bertolini obtained the Drivers title with one race still to go before the end of the season. The Team title was clinched for the Vitaphone Racing team also before the end of the season, on the Hungaroring circuit.
Another excellent performance for Maserati also on the legendary and grueling Nuerburgring circuit, where the official GranSport Trofeo of the Maserati R&D Factory Team and driven by a mixed team of professional pilots, gentlemen drivers and journalists, crossed the finishing line in the 5th position in class and in 36th place overall, offering a great display of reliability.
Moreover Maserati won the Italian title Gran Turismo in the GT1 class with the MC12 of Playteam Sara Free driven by Giambattista Giannoccaro and Tony Vilander. It was an unquestionable success, with 12 wins and two second positions in 8 rounds during the racing season.
Maserati’s passion expresses itself in a new merchandising line, with branded products for every taste and every occasion.
The new collection features six categories: Pure, Executive, Leisure, Gift, Passion and MC, suited to respond to many different requirements: From t-shirts with the Maserati grille, to sweaters, and items of clothing with a young and aggressive spirit inspired by Maserati Racing, to gifts such as Maserati car models, and elegant traveling bags.
All Maserati Collection items are already available at our Modena showroom, at all Maserati dealers and soon on the website www.maseraticollection.com