What is it?
This is the final hurrah for Maserati’s ageing best seller, the 2018 GranTurismo, driven here in ‘lightweight’ MC specification for the first time on British roads.
It’s so completely final that you can no longer order one from the factory in Modena. The last GranTurismo has already been built, so you’ll need to hunt through existing dealer inventory to get one. Whether or not you should actually do so is something we’ll come onto in a moment.
First, some background. Eleven years ago, Maserati’s four-seat coupé arrived with a 399bhp 4.2-litre V8 designed by none other than Ferrari. If our eyes and ears were our only instruments of assessment, it would have won every group test it graced — still would, perhaps — but they aren’t and it didn’t. We still liked it, though.
Soon after, a GranTurismo S was launched with a 433bhp 4.7-litre engine, a six-speed robotised manual 'box instead of an auto and stiffer suspension, complete with thicker anti-roll bars. Body control was predictably improved, but the steering was still inconsistently weighted and the ride now a touch fidgety. We nevertheless preferred it to the BMW M6 of the day, the Bangle-styled V10 bruiser whose values will one day surely rocket.
The GranTurismo S was facelifted 2012, borrowing styling cues from a hardcore, deafeningly loud Porsche GT3-style ‘MC Stradale’ flagship model Maserati had previously introduced. The car’s slightly esoteric appeal lingered and it now had a touch more power. Then, last year, the GranTurismo recipe was tweaked for a second time, with the range condensed in a Sport model and the MC variant tested here, both touting the larger 4.7-litre unit with 454bhp put to the road through the rear wheels and the six-speed ZF torque-converter gearbox.
This particular MC has a healthy complement of options. They take a base price of £107,865 to £126,989 and notably include Alcantara headlining for £960, MC aluminium pedals for £420 (you’d think these would be standard), plenty of Sport Line carbon interior trim for £1740 and a carbon-clad steering wheel for £960.
In fact, the carbon fest doesn’t end there. This test car — chassis 272377, if you particularly like the look of it — has no less than three interior carbon packs totalling more than £6000, plus one for the exterior (the most notable beneficiary being the boot spoiler) costing £2280. It’s all of the Italianate high-gloss wide-weave variety, too, that reminds us somewhat of the early 2000s. This tester likes that, but appreciates many won’t.