What is it?
It’s a Maserati Levante with a Ferrari-derived petrol V6 under the bonnet, which sounds like a rather exciting prospect indeed. The only thing is, it’s not quite the bells-and-whistles petrol V6 you get in the Levante S. You know, the one that churns out a rather lovely 424bhp and 428lb ft.
No, this is more of a baby brother-type model. An entry-level petrol offering, if you will. It’s a car that has actually been around for quite some time, but it’s only now that Maserati has made the decision to offer it to buyers here in the UK.
That engine is essentially the same 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged V6 you’ll find in the Levante S, only with a few software tweaks to curb its power and torque outputs. In this application, it makes 345bhp at 5750rpm, while torque is brought down to 369lb ft and developed between 1750rpm and 4750rpm.
Otherwise, it’s largely identical to that more powerful - not to mention more expensive - Levante S. Drive is directed to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission, while air springs and Maserati’s ‘Skyhook’ adaptive dampers come as standard. The trim hierarchy is the same, with the standard Levante costing from £61,425, and the GranLusso and GranSport models being priced from £69,425.
Our test car came in the more athletically styled GranSport flavour, which adds - among other features - 20in alloys as standard, a more aggressively styled front bumper, sports seats and piano black exterior trim detailing. It’s a smart-looking SUV, this.