Not only did we get to see the new Maserati Grecale mid-size SUV up close last week, but the luxury Italian carmaker’s Australian operation also chose the opportunity to showcase its personalisation programme called Fuoriserie.
The Grecale is the company’s highly anticipated Porsche Macan competitor, due to arrive on Australian shores in the first quarter of 2023 in a choice of three trims, each with a different powertrain. Moreover, an EV one is due around a year later.
Expect pricing to be around $129,000 drive-away for the entry GT petrol variant, $150,000 drive-away for the mid-spec Modena and $195,000 drive-away for the top-spec Trofeo with MC20 supercar DNA – although official pricing will be announced closer to launch.
Kicking off the range will be the GT running a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine with 48V mild-hybrid system making 221kW of power and 450Nm of torque, hooked up to an eight-speed automatic transmission and AWD, allowing a 5.8-second 0-100km/h time.
In the middle is the Grecale Modena, also powered by a 2.0-litre turbo-four and mild-hybrid system, only in this guise making a more robust 242kW. It also gets a mechanical limited-slip rear diff, active shocks, 20-inch wheels and wider rear tyres, while its sprint time drops to 5.3s.
At the top of the Grecale’s pecking order will be the Trofeo using the 3.0-litre twin-turbo Nettuno V6 powerplant from Maserati’s MC20 halo supercar, only detuned to make 390kW (down from 463kW), and 620Nm of torque.
Nevertheless the Grecale Trofeo can rocket from standstill to 100km/h in just 3.8 seconds, while top speed is 285km/h. it also gains an electronic limited-slip rear differential, active shocks, and air suspension with up to 65mm of adjustment.
It also rides on larger 21-inch alloy wheels shod with 255/40 series tyres up front, while the rear is fitted with 295/35s. Braking is courtesy of Brembo 360mm discs up front with six-piston calipers, and 350mm rotors out back clamped by four-pot discs.
There are a number of user-selectable drive modes available, including Comfort, GT, Sport, and Off-Road, with a Corsa setting exclusive to the Trofeo.
Arriving around 12 months after the launch will be the all-electric Grecale Folgore, which will have a 400V electrical system, a 105kWh battery, and up to 800Nm of torque to all four wheels.
The Grecale measures 4846mm long, 1979mm wide, 1670mm tall, and sits on a 2901mm wheelbase. There is 570 litres of luggage space in the Trofeo, slightly less in the hybrids.
Inside the cabin are plenty of screens, including a completely digital instrumentation display, and a control display between the rear seats.
In the middle of the dashboard is a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen, which looks to be running the latest uConnect 5 operating system, has support for two simultaneous Bluetooth phone connections, wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and a built-in voice control system.
Underneath and angled upwards is a secondary 8.8-inch touchscreen for the climate control, suspension and drivetrain systems.
In regards to the Fuoriserie personalisation program, the particular one-off build you see here is dubbed ‘Grecale Mission from Mars’, heralding an upcoming event under the Modena sky on November 28, 2024, to celebrate the 60 years since the launch of the first spacecraft to explore Mars.
The show car wears Galactic Orange metal paint, chrome red-gold windows and air vents, specially made Vortex wheels, glitch effect on the Trident logo, and a black metal badge. Inside, this Grecale is upholstered in Black Alcantara seats with ice leather side band and exclusive elements inspired by the electric currents on Mars and astronauts’ spacesuits.
According to Maserati Australia & New Zealand National Marketing Manager Tim Stanton, 36 per cent of luxury buyers are interested in purchasing personalised products or services, while one-in-five consumers who expressed an interest in personalised products are willing to pay a 20 per cent premium.
Moreover, 42 per cent of consumers would rather be led by brands and choose from a selection of options and 48 per cent are willing to wait longer for a personalised product or service.
Maserati offers customers two distinct personalisation levels of its Fuoriserie programme: the first it calls Modelli Speciale, which encompasses an extended colour palate, interior treatments, livery and wheel treatments – meaning buyers can spec their cars off a larger menu to enhance and personalise the vehicle.
And for those who want to create something far more special with their Maserati, there’s a second and more involving level of customisation known as Sartoria, where Maserati customers can travel to Maserati Centro Stile in Italy where someone will personally curate your vehicle to your exact requirements.
This includes things like paint to sample and using even more exotic fabrics and trim bits.
Maserati is understandably tight-lipped on costs, suffice to say, it’s probably not going to be a cheap exercise, given some of the three-layer paints used can set you back as much as $46,000 or more.