The technology on the Maserati GranTurismo
The Maserati GranTurismo is powered by an eight cylinder 4,244 cc V90° engine, one that is part of the company’s new range of power units. The engine develops 405 bhp at 7,100 rpm, equivalent to 96.4 bhp/litre. Compact and light, the cylinder heads are made of aluminium alloy and silicon. The 32 valves are actioned by two overhead camshafts per bank while the overhead camshafts on the aspirated side are controlled by a low pressure, continual phase variator.The lubrication system features a wet sump, which means a reduction in noise, making the cabin an even quieter place to be. The engine produces a reassuring burble that never interferes with the driving experience.
The exhaust connected to the V8 meets the most stringent anti-pollution regulations but does not compromise the car’s performance. On a technical level, metal has replaced ceramic as the material of choice for the catalysers, the same as those found on competition cars.
The acceleration provided by the Maserati V8 is immediate and thanks to the electronic ‘drive by wire’ throttle control, the car responds to even the slightest touch on the pedal.
The Maserati GranTurismo’s new hydraulic gearbox brings out the best in the engine. The self-adapting automatic gearbox is especially useful at the low-mid range revs while top end power doesn’t suffer. Gear changes can be made right up to 7200 rpm, a rate that no other automatic transmission in the world can match.
There are four function modes: Auto Normal is for comfortable cruising, Auto Sport is for those who like a sportier, more involving drive, Auto ICE is for low grip conditions and then there is Manual mode. In manual, it is the driver who chooses when to change gear via the steering wheel paddles.
The Maserati GranTurismo reacts brilliantly thanks to its perfect weight distribution: 49% of the car’s weight sits over the front end and 51% on the rear. This set up was achieved by shifting the engine behind the front axle and it gives the driver an unparalleled sense of security in any conditions.
The load-bearing chassis means greater rigidity and its high-resistance, box-steel structure allows the suspension to track every dip in the terrain. This enhances the car’s dynamic handling and ensures a more comfortable drive.
The Maserati GranTurismo’s precise handling benefits from front and rear wishbone suspension. The system’s ‘anti-dive’ and ‘anti-squat’ geometry prevents the front from dipping under braking and the rear end from squatting under acceleration.
The GranTurismo is equipped with the Skyhook suspension system of shock absorbers with an aluminium body that continually adjust the damping, as standard. This technology automatically selects the optimal level of damping and integrates with the MSP safety system and the calibration of the car’s automatic gearbox. The result is that the car is able to adapt to the characteristics of each driver; the GranTurismo is a car that fits like a glove.
The Skyhook system
The aluminium bodied, gas-regulated Skyhook set up assures the automatic and continuous control of the damping whatever the road condition. It does this without affecting on-board comfort, penalising performance or compromising the car’s sporty nature.
The Skyhook system acts by using acceleration sensors that detect movement on all four wheels and the body. A control unit processes the data it receives from the sensors, analyses the driving style and road surface and instantly adjusts the dampers accordingly via their proportional valves.
However, as the Skyhook and transmission is data from the sensors and is fed to the same point, Maserati engineers have integrated the two systems. So the GranTurismo is able to tweak the suspension settings so that the driver feels even less movement through the chassis during gear changes.
Opting for the ‘Sport’ setting results in a stiffer ride, less roll, more contained load transfer, greater agility and stability as well as allowing stunning performance figures. The dedicated on board computer reduces gear shifts by 40% and Skyhook switches from controlling the ride to focusing on the set up (body control), making the GranTurismo easier to handle and giving it more grip. Together, the two systems combine to offer more precise, livelier gear changes.