Full 2014 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible Review
What's New for 2014
The 2014 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible MC version gets new wheels, a carbon fiber hood (with a hood scoop) and some new interior trim.
If you're looking to fill that empty space in your garage with some evocative Italian metal, a Maserati catalog is a great place to start. No doubt you'll pause on the page for the 2014 Maserati GranTurismo convertible. And indeed, this strikingly attractive drop-top is capable of transforming even the homeliest garage into an oasis of beauty and class.
Apart from its elegance, the Maserati GranTurismo is a genuinely enjoyable car to drive. It all starts with the sweet 4.7-liter V8 under the hood. What this engine lacks in face-flattening response off the line, it makes up for with its thrilling soundtrack and satisfying vigor at higher revs. The V8 is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, which might not seem nearly exotic enough for a Maserati. However, thanks to careful calibration, it serves up very quick upshifts and rev-matched downshifts. The GranTurismo Sport features adaptive magnetically controlled shock absorbers that smooth out the bumps and make it a natural for highway travel, while the MC version has a nonadjustable but more aggressively tuned suspension that makes it the better pick for exploring twisty back roads.
Of course, as its name suggests, the GranTurismo is really more of a grand touring model than a full-on sports car, and it's certainly not the quickest nor the best-handling car you could choose in this price range. Furthermore, even with the abundance of leather in the cockpit, there's no disguising the dated and not especially user-friendly control layout. And if you're looking for cutting-edge technology and safety features, you won't find them here.
If you want more in the way of speed and tech features, the 2014 Porsche 911 and 2014 Jaguar XKR-S are two of the most appealing alternatives. Neither can match the Maserati's usable backseat, but few cars can keep up with the 911 on a good road, while the Jag has its own personality, courtesy of a fire-breathing supercharged V8. A less obvious pick would be an authentic British sports car like the 2014 Aston Martin V8 Vantage. And if you're just looking for a luxurious convertible for long highway trips, it's hard to go wrong with the 2014 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class, an incredibly refined car that's loaded with amenities. Although the 2014 Maserati GranTurismo convertible doesn't earn top billing in this group, it's an unequivocally beautiful car brimming with Italian passion -- and at this level, character counts for a lot.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2014 Maserati GranTurismo Convertible is a four-passenger convertible offered in three trim levels: base, Sport and MC (for Maserati Corse or racing). There's also a companion 2014 Maserati GranTurismo Coupe covered in a separate review.
The base GranTurismo convertible comes standard with 20-inch alloy wheels, Brembo brakes, adaptive bi-xenon headlights with integrated LED running lights, LED taillights,
heated mirrors, an adaptive suspension, front and rear parking sensors, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, 10-way power adjustable front seats with lumbar adjustment, heated front seats, driver seat memory and wood interior trim. Electronic features include a voice-activated navigation system, Bluetooth and a Bose surround-sound audio system with a CD player, satellite radio, digital music storage and a USB/iPod interface.
With the exception of the front parking sensors and dual-tip exhaust that doesn't work with its model-specific bodywork, the GranTurismo Sport includes all of the above plus the upgraded engine, specific 20-inch wheels, carbon fiber shift paddles, and aluminum pedals.
The more aggressive GranTurismo MC gets a more firmly tuned (but non-adaptive) suspension, a carbon fiber hood, a simulated suede headliner and other unique trim details (mostly in carbon fiber).
The base and Sport can be optioned with many of the MC's standard features. And if you desire, the GranTurismo MC can also be optioned with the Sport's more compliant electronically controlled multimode suspension. Options for all three trims include a choice of brake caliper finishes, different wheel designs, two-tone interiors, perforated leather seats and a seemingly endless combination of interior colors/trims with contrasting stitching and piping. Furthermore, buyers can specify any color stitching, piping and/or exterior paint they desire: for a price, of course.
Powertrains and Performance
The 2014 Maserati GranTurismo convertible comes with a naturally aspirated 4.7-liter V8 engine regardless of trim level. The base convertible produces 444 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque while the GranTurismo Sport and MC produce 454 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. Putting the power to the rear wheels is a six-speed automatic transmission.
Maserati claims the base convertible will take you from zero to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds while the Sport and MC take 4.9 and 4.8 seconds, respectively. The GranTurismo convertible's EPA estimated fuel economy is 15 mpg combined (13 mpg city/20 mpg highway).
Standard safety features for the GranTurismo convertible include antilock brakes with brake assist, stability and traction control, front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags. Front and rear parking sensors are standard on the GT Sport, while the MC gets rear sensors only. A roll bar behind each of the rear seats automatically deploys when the system senses a potential emergency, protecting the rear passengers' heads.
Interior Design and Special Features
The 2014 Maserati GranTurismo convertible's interior is tastefully appointed with high-quality materials. Leather graces almost every surface and can be ordered in a wide array of colors or replaced with one of several carbon-fiber or faux-suede packages. The overall look is elegantly luxurious without appearing gaudy or stodgy.
The GranTurismo's controls are logically organized but dated in their design, so audio and climate adjustments will require you to sift through an array of small buttons and knobs. Likewise, the navigation system hasn't been updated in a few years, so there's far less functionality here than you'll get with rivals' electronics interfaces.
Meanwhile, the front seats offer excellent comfort and support for spirited driving as well as long-distance journeys. Unlike other cars in this class, the GranTurismo also boasts comfortable rear seats for medium-sized adults. The trunk however, is a different story. It holds a paltry 6.1 cubic feet of cargo. While that's about 1 additional cubic foot of cargo space when compared to the 911 and the V8 Vantage, the Jaguar XK drop-top gets 11.1 cubic feet.
The 2014 Maserati GranTurismo is a grand touring car through and through. Its adaptive suspension is compliant enough to absorb most road imperfections with ease and does a remarkably good job of minimizing body roll. For most drivers, we'd recommend it over the MC's standard sport suspension, which delivers a decidedly firm ride. Either way, though, the GranTurismo convertible feels balanced around turns, and its steering is precise and communicative. The GranTurismo is too large to play the role of a sports car, but it's agile enough for its size and comfortable enough long-distance travel.
Although the Maserati's 4.7-liter V8 feels a little light on off-the-line thrust compared to the turbocharged engines in competitors, this engine comes into its own as you pick up revs and it's loaded with personality. Pressing the Sport button on the MC opens up the exhaust restrictors at all engine speeds, making for an enjoyably sonorous experience. The six-speed automatic transmission works well, too, as it provides smooth gear changes in its default mode and impressively quick upshifts in Sport mode. In Manual mode, the driver has full control over shift points via steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters and downshifts are rev-matched.