It’s a hallowed name, from a sacred place, somewhere in the town of Modena, Italy. That’s about 12 miles away from its relatives at Ferrari, in Maranello. We’re talking about the legendary Maserati motor car company and specifically about the Maserati GranTurismo MC convertible.
A legendary design from the Pininfarina Design studios, the GranTurismo MC (for Maserati Corse- the brand’s racing division) sees refinement at nearly every turn. A brand-defining model, the GranTurismo MC is the descendant of 1947’s Maserati A6 1500, which was their first grand touring machine. While that classic may have been slightly bulbous, this contemporary example is low and sleek.
A four-seater, the GT has usable rear seating that allows a couple of passengers the ability to sit back in the Poltrona Frau leather-covered thrones.
What is it?
The Maserati GranTurismo MC is a two-door, four-place grand touring convertible that is one of the most aggressively designed GT machines on the road today. Restyled by Pininfarina Studios for model-year 2018, it loads up on the technological refinement, while at the same time remaining true to the MC’s classic design.
The most noticeable difference occurs around the front grille with chrome trim surrounding the Maserati Trident logo, and at the rear diffuser, which includes round chrome exhaust finishers.
At the Maserati’s core beats the heart of a Ferrari. That heart is one of the few remaining naturally-aspirated engines in the segment (Most others have, by now, resorted to turbo- or supercharging.). A state-of-the-art 4.7-liter Maranello V8, it was jointly developed by Maserati and Ferrari. Using V8 Cross Plane Crankshaft design, the engine produces a lustfully throaty sound that becomes even more enhanced when the Sport drive mode is engaged.
Power from the Ferrari-built V8 checked in at 460 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque for a forceful push back into the seats when stomping on the skinny pedal. The bumping of our melon heads on the headrests yielded not pain, but an involuntary smile, simply because. Well, because it goes from 0-60 mph in 4.7 seconds. Top speed in the MC is 186 mph.
We were surprised to find the gearbox was a ZF six-speed automatic transmission rather than one of the more contemporary 8-speed models offered in competitive vehicles.
We did, however, thoroughly enjoy squeezing off the gear changes via the steering wheel-mounted paddle shift levers. All that twist was delivered to an asymmetrical limited-slip differential for direct power and traction on demand. Stick the MC in sport mode, and the whole procedure becomes more intoxicating with gearshifts in as little as 100 milliseconds.
Perfectly settled, with a 49:51 weight distribution, the GranTurismo rides on a double-wishbone suspension that keeps it planted while maintaining flat chassis geometry through a high-speed turn. Maserati’s Sport Skyhook suspension system offers continuously variable damping that adapts to the road surfaces at hand, reading the surfaces almost instantly.
Steering is of the traditional hydraulic variety. Maserati feels it is more responsive than any currently available electrically-assisted version.
Metallic Red Brembo brake calipers reside behind the alloy wheels at all four corners for sure stopping, under almost every condition. The front calipers house six pistons, while the rear house four each. And the GranTurismo’s braking is no fluke. Between the Brembos and the Pirelli P-Zero performance tires, the MC realizes a 4% improvement on dry surfaces and a 5% improvement on the wet.
The interior of the Maserati is quite the place. Covered by some of the most gorgeous leather to be found outside Miuccia Prada’s bedroom, (Google her!), it is a mix of color, texture, chrome
The Maserati 8.4-inch capacitive touchscreen display allows rapid control access when needed, like when your least favorite song comes on the Harman Kardon premium audio system. It operated as designed, but we do think it is time to find a new supplier when sourcing Maserati’s in-car entertainment system.
Getting behind the wheel of the Maserati GranTurismo is actually much easier than you would expect. Perhaps it’s because the typical buyer may be unwilling to lower themselves into a car, causing the Sciatica to flare up.
Thankfully, the GT’s seating position was placed just right to avoid any moans and groans while entering and exiting.
Cranking the key (yes, an actual key) in the ignition to turnover with a jolt until you could hear all eight cylinders firing. And then it was like a basso profundo concerto…until you stepped on the loud pedal. From there, it was like being back in the Formula1 world, before the hybrid era (where the engine noise was
Getting underway required a firm placement on the accelerator and a firm hand on the wheel. From there the engine revs climb progressively, to the point that you can feel the hair growing on your chest corresponding to how fast you hurtle yourself down the road. The feeling is a sensation few will experience.
For today, I am one of the lucky few.
Maserati GranTurismo MC
Type: Four seat Grand Touring Convertible
Power: 4.7-liter V8
Horsepower: 460 horsepower
Torque: 384 lb-ft of torque
Transmission: ZF 6-speed Automatic Transmission with Paddle Shift Levers
Drive: Rear Wheel Drive with Limited Slip Differential
Front Suspension: Double Wishbone
Rear Suspension: Double Wishbone
Length: 193.7 inches
Wheelbase: 115.8 inches
Width: 75.39 inches
Height: 53.26 inches