2008 Maserati Quattroporte

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2008 Maserati Quattroporte Review

By KBB.com Editors

Although it currently operates under the giant Fiat corporate umbrella, Italian boutique automaker Maserati maintains its time-tested ability to turn out sensual and highly desirable supercars that appeal to both the mind and the heart. The latest Quattroporte (which literally translates into "four-door") is a rear-drive sedan that matches world-class performance dynamics with emotional styling in ways that few other cars can equal. For 2008, Maserati's flagship is offered in three distinct variations: The standard Quattroporte Automatic, an even-plusher Executive GT and the new enthusiast-oriented Sport GT S. The Quattroporte's closest competitive kindred spirit remains the Jaguar XJ Super V8 or XJR, but high-end German luxury and performance sedans, including the Audi A8 and S8, BMW 750i and Alpina B7 and the Mercedes-Benz S550 and S63 AMG also belong on the list of alternatives meriting consideration.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for an exclusive luxury sport sedan that melds a uniquely Italian sense of style and grace with excellent performance, the Quattroporte is where you belong.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you can't live without a state-of-the-art navigation system, there will not be a Quattroporte in your future. With only 50 geographically-skewed dealers across the entire country, the real-world appeal of this exquisite Maserati also could be limited by your locale.

What's New for 2008

A more aggressively configured Sport GT S model replaces the now-departed Sport GT as the Quattroporte performance leader. The U.S. will get 25 of 100 "Collezione Cento" versions that offer super-sumptuous interiors with unique rear-seat multimedia systems to pamper passengers and chauffeured executives.

Driving the Quattroporte
Driving Impressions

This magnificent Maserati is truly rewarding to drive. The Quattroporte feels much lighter than its 4,400-pound curb weight, and a 49/51-percent front-to-rear weight distribution provides exceptional balance that contributes to...

... its outstanding agility. Although happy to motor about town as a quiet and refined – if undeniably high-profile – personal transporter, even the Quattroporte Automatic and Executive GT are stunningly adept at carving through corners on your favorite twisty backroad. Their steering is precise and well-weighted and, at the touch of a button, the adjustable Skyhook suspension transitions into a quite civilized but very effective "Sport" mode that interconnects shock valving and slip-control functions to impart a more aggressive edge to the mix. Everything gets cranked up a notch in the new Sport GT S, with its tauter single-rate suspension tuning, lower ride height, higher-performance tires on standard 20-inch wheels and custom-spec Brembo anti-lock disc brakes that are even larger and beefier than the already impressive brakes fitted on the base Quattroporte and Executive GT models.

Six-speed Automatic Transmission
Sole fitment across the entire 2008 Quattroporte lineup, the ZF-designed automatic delivers impressively quick but smooth shifts, whether you let it do all the work or you select its more aggressively-programmed Sport mode and manually change up or down using the traditional console-mounted lever or F1-style paddles on the steering column.

Exceptional Personalization Potential
Maserati makes it easy – albeit sometimes a tad pricey – for Quattroporte owners to create a unique interpretation of their dream sport sedan by adding a distinctive individual touch to everything from specific interior trims to color-coordinated brake calipers.

2008 Maserati Quattroporte Details

Sensual cabin appointments match supple leathers, alcantara and fine hardwoods or carbon-fiber accents, depending upon the Quattroporte model. The analog main gauges are legible and key controls are arrayed in a largely user-friendly manner, but some supplemental switchgear layouts, particularly for climate controls, are a bit awkward. The appearance and operation of the navigation system also falls well below the rest of the package. Both driver and front passenger are coddled by 14-way power front seats that provide outstanding comfort and surprisingly good lateral support. The Quattroporte's aft quarters aren't the largest in the class, but the outboard rear-seat positions individually power adjust and will handle two average-sized adults in above-average comfort.


The Quattroporte's Pininfarina-penned bodywork fits like an Italian designer suit, rich in athletic character and offering elegant detailing, such as a subtle ridge line that carries from the front fenders to the car's upswept rear flanks, a flowing C-pillar treatment, paired dual chrome exhaust tips integrated into the rear valance panel and the bright "Maserati" in script across its squared-up decklid. A prominent signature oval grille with tasteful corporate trident identifies each Quattroporte trim level's position in the hierarchy, with horizontal chrome bars, chrome mesh or black mesh signifying base, Executive GT or Sport GT S status – rankings which also bring model-specific 18-, 19- and 20-inch alloy wheel designs with staggered-width, low-profile tires.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All Quattroportes share a potent V8 engine and smooth-shifting six-speed automatic transmission, loads of premium interior furnishings, numerous basic power assists, dual-zone climate control, power sunroof, Bose audio package, Bosch-Blaupunkt Multi Media System (integrated GPS navigation, trip computer and CD changer), multifunction steering wheel on a power tilt and telescoping column and cruise control. Safety highlights include front, front-side and side-curtain air bags, bi-xenon headlamps, rain-sensing wipers, stability and traction control and anti-lock disc brakes. The Executive GT adds heated and cooled front seats with a massage function plus rear climate controls, while the Sport GT S gets carbon-fiber interior accents, upgraded wheels, tires and brakes and a performance suspension with fixed-rate instead of adjustable shock absorbers.

Optional Equipment

Maserati claims the Quattroporte's personalization choices allow for more than four million unique possibilities and the mere interior trim combinations for buyer-specific wood, leather, alcantara and super-supple leather upgrades – and the actual matched natural hides in the Luxury Package – are stunning in scope. All models also offer a rear seat entertainment system with TV, DVD and a seven-inch screen, Comfort Pack heated, cooled and massager rear seats, front Park Assist, a spare tire and a five-piece set of matching fitted luggage. Shifter paddles that are standard on the Sport GT S are available for the base Quattroporte and Executive GT, which also offer 19-inch run-flat tire upgrades.

Under the Hood

The driving force behind all Quattroporte models is a free-revving Ferrari-sourced 4.2-liter V8 that makes 400 horsepower and 339 pound-feet of torque. Made from lightweight aluminum, fortified with variable valve timing to help bolster its low and mid-range punch and set back well behind the front axle centerline to improve the car's overall balance, it's backed by a superb six-speed automatic transmission that features a manual-style Sport shift gate on the Base and Executive GT – as well as steering-column-mounted paddles on the Sport GT S. Step hard on the throttle and its exhaust note takes on an entirely different level of urgency as the Quattroporte streaks from zero to 60 mph in about 5.5 seconds regardless of trim – and on to a top speed in the 165-170 mph range.

4.2-liter V8
400 horsepower @ 7000 rpm
339 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/18 (automatic)

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