Total orders in 2014 came to 6307, so the fact that nearly 7000 Quattroporte orders were been taken in the first four months of the year came as encouraging news. The Quattroporte's engines and platform are also important because they’ll form the backbone of the Ghibli sports saloon and Levante SUV, expected to become Maserati’s top two sellers ahead of the Quattroporte.
In the UK, the launch line-up consists of the £70,510, 273bhp 3.0 V6 diesel, the £82,750, 408bhp twin-turbo 3.0-litre V6 S petrol and the £115,980, 527bhp twin-turbo 3.8 V8 GTS.
Thanks to a planned assault on the Chinese market (where a detuned, entry-level 326bhp V6 replaces the S), the Quattroporte offers a mammoth 3171mm wheelbase as standard – more than even the LWB Jaguar XJ. And it’s the Jag on which Maserati has set its sights with this car, to which end it must master the tricky formula of high-end comfort combined with a sporting drive.
The Quattroportes have healthy kit as standard with each model available in standard form, GranLusso or GranSport. The standard car comes with swathes of leather, chrome and big alloy wheels, and Maserati's new 8.4in touchscreen infotainment system paired to a premium Harman and Kardon stereo system, although those intent on having the best can opt for a Bowers and Wilkins equivalent.
As for the other two trims, both of which are the only choices for the V8 GTS, they have been styled with different clientele in mind. The GranLusso models have been designed with those looking for more exclusivity in mind, with fashion house Ermenegildo Zegna brought in to style the Quattroporte. Such is their work that the big Maserati not only comes with chrome trim and body colours skirts, 20in alloys and black brake calipers on the outside, but also a bespoke silk interior alongside the polished wood inserts. There is also a powered sunblind, heated rear seats and four-zone climate control thrown into the package.
The GrandSport gives the Quattroporte a sporty edge, with muscular bumpers and gloss black side skirts add for an imposing presence, while the big Maserati gets 21in alloys, sports seats, paddle shifters, a sports steering wheel and red brake calipers.
The Quattroporte's interior fit, finish and ergonomics are a class above its coupé and cabrio stablemates, even if the action of some moving parts can't match German benchmarks. Nevertheless, it's a generous and luxurious space, despite a slight visibility penalty from that sliver-like glasshouse.