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Maserati Grecale SUV ready to take on Porsche Macan. Image by Maserati.

Maserati Grecale SUV ready to take on Porsche Macan
New model joins Italian firm's SUV line-up and goes on sale later in 2022.
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What's all this about?

It's the Maserati Grecale SUV, and it's the latest car upon which the Italian firm is pinning its future success. Bosses are hoping to 'do a Porsche' with the Grecale, meaning that they want it to become a sales smash (like the Cayenne and Macan have been for the German firm) so that Maserati can continue building sports cars. It means the Italian company now has two SUVs in its line-up, with the Grecale offering a smaller alternative to the Levante. Like that car, and many other Maserati models, the Grecale is named after a Mediterranean wind.

I see. Is it me or does it look like a Ford Puma?

It's you. The Grecale is a lot bigger for starters, since it's based on the same 'Giorgio' platform as the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, but Maserati has given its new SUV bespoke suspension and drivetrain settings. And while that styling might look familiar, that's because the trapezoidal grille and high-set headlights are influenced by the mid-engined Maserati MC20 sports car. Elsewhere, the taillights get their inspiration from the slender boomerang units seen on the 3200 GT sports car of the 2000s.

Well it's certainly distinctive. What's going on under the skin?

Three versions of the Grecale will be available from launch - the GT, Modena and Trofeo. All three come with an eight-speed automatic gearbox and four-wheel drive, but the GT and Modena have 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engines, while the Trofeo has a 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6.

Starting with the GT, the 2.0-litre unit is tuned to make 300hp and 450Nm of torque, while a 48-volt electrical system with belt starter generator and electrical compressor introduces fuel-saving mild-hybrid technology. This model comes with a drive mode selector and can sprint from 0-62mph in 5.6 seconds, while Brembo brakes are fitted to provide equally strong stopping power. The Modena version bumps power up to 330hp and retains the mild-hybrid tech, but torque remains the same, while adaptive dampers, a rear diff lock and a wider rear track are added. This version manages 0-62mph in 5.3 seconds, and both cars have a 149mph top speed.

The V6-powered Trofeo packs 530hp and 620Nm of torque, which means it's good for 0-62mph in 3.8 seconds, while top speed is 177mph. There are six-piston Brembo brakes fitted here, a Corsa mode is added to the drive selector, air suspension comes as standard and an electronic rear diff lock is also included.

All models gain a new piece of software developed by Maserati called the Vehicle Dynamic Control Module. This is a development of the MC20's electronic control system, and adjusts the Grecale's various drive settings 'on the fly' to adapt to how the car is being driven.

That all sounds promising. How about the interior?

Maserati is offering three distinct themes with the trim levels, but all models will come with a 12.3-inch ultra-HD touchscreen infotainment set-up based on an Android Auto operating system. This incorporates a digital clock - replacing Maserati's traditional analogue item - which is part of the 'hey Maserati' voice control system and reacts to commands that you give it.

There is the usual full leather trim with high-quality saddle stitching, while open-pore wood trim and laser-cut metals are used, depending on which model you choose. Lounge-style ambient backlighting for the dashboard is said to be a first for any road car, too. The Trofeo model adds sportier perforated leather and carbon fibre inserts, while high-contrast stitching is used throughout.

It sounds like the Grecale has all bases covered...

One model that won't be released at launch is the Maserati Grecale Folgore, which is coming in 2023. Folgore is Italian for lightning, and the Grecale will be the first all-electric Maserati to go on sale. Full details haven't been confirmed, but we do know that the Grecale Folgore will come with a 105kWh battery and 400-volt charging technology, while the electric drive system (likely to be a two-motor set-up for four-wheel drive, like the rest of the range) will be able to deliver as much as 800Nm of torque.

Shane O'Donoghue - 22 Mar 2022

2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.

2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.2022 Maserati Grecale. Image by Maserati.    - Maserati road tests
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