Full 2013 Maserati GranTurismo Review
What's New for 2013
For 2013 the Maserati GranTurismo coupe lineup receives a variety of minor changes. Last year's GranTurismo S Automatic has been renamed the GranTurismo Sport and takes styling cues from the more aggressive GranTurismo MC. Under the hood, the 4.7-liter V8 makes a bit more power and is standardized in terms of output regardless of trim level. Maserati has brought back the single-clutch automated manual transmission as well. Other significant changes include new brakes, new automatic transmission programming and revisions to standard and optional equipment.
Some cars are meant to be driven and not seen (the Porsche Panamera comes to mind), while other cars are more suited to being ogled than being driven rapidly up a snaking mountain road. The 2013 Maserati GranTurismo is one of those rare cars that is equally qualified for either mission. A curvaceous body, adept handling and a classic V8 engine with a seductive and sonorous exhaust note make the GranTurismo a car for those who value passionate motoring that tantalizes all of the senses.
The front-engine, rear-wheel-drive GranTurismo has been called one of the most beautiful cars of its generation. We agree. Unlike the slightly larger, four-door Maserati Quattroporte, the fluid lines of the two-door GranTurismo are more graceful and pleasing. In addition, the GranTurismo seats four in style and sophistication. Inside the cabin, infotainment systems are adequately up to date, materials are first-rate and the seats are appropriately sport-bolstered.
As the name suggests, the GranTurismo Sport is a touring car, not an outright exotic sports car. There's certainly more than enough power and handling to get the blood racing, though the Maserati is outperformed (though not outclassed) by several competitors. For those who desire a driving instrument with a sharper edge, the GranTurismo MC comes with a more demanding transmission and sportier suspension tuning.
In terms of price, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage and Jaguar XKR-S represent the GT's closest competitors, and each provides higher performance. The newly revamped and expanded model line of the Porsche 911 is similarly worthy of consideration, though it lacks the seating capacity. Meanwhile, the BMW 6 Series and Mercedes CL-Class will save you some cash while still providing a healthy dose of luxurious comfort for four. But when it comes to automotive sculpture that also moves beautifully, it's hard to overlook -- or forget -- the 2013 Maserati GranTurismo.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2013 Maserati GranTurismo is a four-passenger coupe offered in two trim levels: Sport and MC (for Maserati Corse or racing). Convertibles are also available, covered in a separate review.
The GranTurismo Sport comes standard with 20-inch alloy wheels, Brembo brakes, adaptive bi-xenon headlights with integrated LED running lights, LED taillights, automatic wipers, an adaptive suspension, front and rear parking sensors, auto-dimming mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated front seats, driver seat memory and wood interior trim. Electronic features include a voice-activated navigation system, Bluetooth and an 11-speaker 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 more aggressive GranTurismo MC includes all of the above plus specific wheels, a more firmly tuned (but non-adaptive) suspension, a faux-suede headliner and other unique interior trim details (mostly in carbon fiber).
The GranTurismo Sport sports a new nose this year that mimics the one already seen on the MC. Similarly, the Sport can be optioned with many, but not all, of the MC's standard features. And unlike in previous years, the GT MC now may be optioned with the GT Sport's more compliant electronically controlled multimode suspension. Options for either of the GranTurismo 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 2013 Maserati GranTurismo comes standard with a naturally aspirated 4.7-liter V8 engine. Through electronic and mechanical measures, the V8 increases output over last year's values to 454 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque.
Putting the power to the rear wheels for the Sport is a six-speed automatic (updated for 2013). Maserati claims this setup should provide 0-60-mph sprints in 4.7 seconds. The GranTurismo MC is equipped with a single-clutch automated-manual transmission. Maserati says it's a bit quicker, at 4.6 seconds, from zero to 60 mph.
The EPA-estimated fuel economy is 13 mpg city/21 mpg highway and 15 mpg in combined driving regardless of model.
Standard safety features for the GranTurismo lineup include antilock brakes with brake assist, stability control, traction control, front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags.
Interior Design and Special Features
The 2013 Maserati GranTurismo'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 supplanted with one of several carbon-fiber or faux-suede packages. The overall look is elegantly luxurious without appearing gaudy or stodgy, and it has just a hint of high-tech influence. Controls are well-placed and simple in operation. There have been no changes to the merely competent infotainment or navigation systems since last year, nor is there a premium audio upgrade available from the factory.
Front-seat upgrades this year enhance lateral support, while comfort remains excellent. The seats are heated and are now equally suited 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. Unfortunately, finding luggage space for four adults will prove difficult, as the trunk can only accommodate up to 9.2 cubic feet of cargo, which is less than what's offered by some rivals.
The 2013 Maserati GranTurismo artfully balances a luxurious ride with sporting athleticism. The adaptive suspension (now available on the MC) is compliant enough to absorb most road imperfections with ease and does a remarkably good job of minimizing body roll and controlling freeway expansion joint-induced bobbing. We'd recommend it over the MC's sport suspension. Either way, though, the GranTurismo's already excellent weight distribution and communicative steering demonstrate enhanced feel and agility in the corners. All in all, the Sport is a true grand touring car: fast and agile, yet comfortable enough to travel long distances.
The mere existence of the GranTurismo MC in the lineup silences critics who have always said the GranTurismo was too quiet or too soft. The racing arm of Maserati helped develop the suspension tuning, and it shows, as the car's sharp handling belies its proportions. The ride is definitely firmer, but remains fluid enough. Unlike with the GT Sport, pressing the Sport button on the MC opens up the exhaust restrictors at all engine speeds. The MC's single-clutch automated transmission is outdated compared to more modern dual-clutch designs, however, and suffers from a finicky nature at low speeds and an inability to creep with the engine idling.