Ghibli and Levante - Maserati confirms the names of its new Models

28/09/2012 - Paris International Motor Show
Maserati has confirmed the names of the two new models set to drive the legendary performance car maker’s sales to a target of 50,000 a year by 2015 with the Ghibli, a high end ‘E’ segment sports saloon set to arrive in 2013, and the Levante, Maserati’s sports SUV contender, arriving in 2014 to mark Maserati’s centennial.

The Quattroporte will mark its fiftieth anniversary with an all new model, the start of programme of new model launches that will endow Maserati with its broadest and most competitive range performance cars since it was founded by the Maserati brothers in 1914. The complete range will open with the Ghibli and Quattroporte as its performance saloons, complimented by the GranTurismo as its four seat coupe and the GranCabrio providing open top motoring, while the Maserati Levante sports SUV, the production versions of the Maserati Kubang concept car, will launch the car maker into a sector that has not previously seen the ‘Trident’ marque.

Given Maserati’s unique history and is contribution to automobile design and technology, it is no surprise that both names drawn on the marque’s illustrious history.

The launch of the 21st century Ghibli will mark the third incarnation of the name for Maserati, with the original Ghibli being an acclaimed two door grand touring car launched in 1967. Designed by Giogetto Giugiaro, the Ghibli is held as one of the master designer’s greatest creations and ultimately the V8 powered car appeared in three versions, the coupe Spyder and SS variants. The Ghibli name appeared again in 1992 for another two door coupe which also was the basis for the much sort after racing version, the Ghibli Open Cup, a highly competitive racing car and now a car that collectors prize for the its ability and rarity, with production of the second generation Ghibli running until 1997.

Given that it will be launched in Maserati’s centennial year, it is entirely appropriate that Levante draws its name from the very birth place of the company, the Via Emilia Levante in Bologna, the street in which the Maserati brothers, Alfieri, Bindo, Carlo, Ettore, and Ernesto, founded the company that still carries their name, before the company moved to its present home, just up the Via Emilia, in Modena. Like all Maseratis, the Levante will carry the famous Maserati Trident badge, another symbol of the foundation of the company, drawn as it is from the Fontana del Nettuno, or Fountain of Neptune, the 600 year old statue at the heart of Bologna.

The Maserati Quattroporte name was first used in 1963 with the first generation Maserati’ ‘four door’ in production until 1969, the second generation was launched in 1974 and it was replaced by the third generation in 1979 and the fourth generation arrived in 1994. The fifth generation Quattroporte, launched in at the Frankfurt Motorshow in 2003 and on sale from 2004, holds the mantle of the best-selling Maserati of all time and has been at the core of the re-birth of Maserati over the past decade. Its qualities of exclusivity, performance and style have not only driven Maserati’s own success, but driven other car makers to try and emulate a market sector that Maserati effectively created.