Since 2016, having a Maserati loaded with sportiness, design and temperament does not necessarily require sacrificing space, wanting to leave the asphalt for a radical track or infarction benefits. Because, like a good SUV, the Levante arrived to respond to those needs without giving up the excitement of a GT, or the magical and thrilling sound that surrounds a sports race. And now the more adventurous Maserati is updated in safety, but also allows the luxury of increasing its exclusive image with exceptional finishes, in this case the GranLusso , which is committed mainly to luxury and sophistication.
The latest update of the Italian SUV has adopted the electric power steering instead of the hydraulics used so far. This supports better the different driving modes and allows the use of the new ADAS functions of driving assistance. In addition, the electric assistance retains the steering feel of the hydraulic system thanks to a sensational adjustment that imitates perfectly the help dose of the mechanical method , without losing sensations or the sensitivity that is transmitted to the steering wheel of what happens under the wheels .
In any case, there is something more important than what happens under the wheels, and that is what is \’baked\’ under the hood. And there, hidden, we found a 350 hp V6 twin-turbo engine associated with a ZF 8-speed gearbox and a large shift paddles on the steering wheel.This engine, with denomination F160 and that uses a turbo of low inertia for each bank of cylinders and injection of fuel of high pressure -200 bars-, is designed and assembled by Ferrari in Maranello and has nothing to do with the one that uses Alfa Romeo, with similar characteristics. In the Ferrari engine used by the Levante, the maximum torque is available below 2,000 rpm, always guaranteeing an excellent response. But, in addition, in the sporty driving mode, the exhaust by-pass system provides a unique sound experience. Only? Well, maybe that is not the most appropriate adjective, because the sound of the V6 Levante 350 HP thrills and puts the hair on end again and again, without limit.
Actual consumption, for those concerned about this aspect, ranges between 11 and 20 l / 100 km depending on the joy of the right foot. Although a proven average and acceptable, if you are not always obsessed with that, is between 13 and 15 l / 100 km.
The GranLusso finish , for which you have to pay an additional 10,500 euros, offers Comfort front seats with 12 electrical settings and a memory function to access preset configurations. You can also choose between the full Italian premium leather upholstery – that of our test unit – or the silk Zegna Silk Edition.
For the rest, the Levante matches the \’off road\’ possibilities of the diesel version , thanks to outstanding technology and numerous driving modes.
THE Bottom line
The 350 hp V6 engine built by Ferrari is undoubtedly the best of the \’cheaper\’ Levante. Its exciting sound, its thrilling performance, its reasonable consumption if we do not abuse the accelerator … But the Gran Turismo of the SUV class offers much more, especially to those who like to go out into the country.