Vehicle electrification isn't the wave of the future; it's the wave of the present.
All automakers are steering their research and development departments (and the resources that go with it) towards making more hybrids, more EVs, and other methods of electrification that suit their brands. And such is the case for even the most traditional of the many automakers worldwide: Maserati.
The Modena-based Maserati brand has just revealed the new Levante Hybrid, which makes it their first SUV to have an electrified drivetrain and joins the Ghibli Hybrid that was revealed just a few months ago.
The Levante Hybrid features several design updates on the exterior such as a revised chrome front grille with an enhanced “tuning fork” design, the new rear light clusters, optional blue brake calipers, and 19-inch wheels. Actually, the Levante Hybrid comes as a GT trim variant with GranLusso styling features. Customers can also opt for the Sport Pack version.
The Levante Hybrid is also being offered with the new tri-coat blue known as Azzurro Astro. Being a hybrid, Maserati is using a shade of cobalt blue for some of the details, both inside and outside. Cobalt blue is also used on the Levante Hybrid's logos.
The interior likewise get some updates as this Levante Hybrid is based on the updated 2021 model. This is still a 5-seater model though; there are no 7-seater variants of the Levante.
Maserati says the main 8.4-inch screen has improved resolution, better graphics, and was designed to neatly complement the air vents. The Levante Hybrid also has the new Maserati Intelligent Assistant (MIA) which runs on Android. The gauge cluster has likewise been improved; the gauges are still analog but have better graphics. The multi-info display sits in the middle, and measures 7” overall.
Powering the Levante Hybrid is a turbocharged four-cylinder, 2.0-liter engine, and a hybrid system. Here's the thing though: the Levante Hybrid, unlike many hybrids in the market, is a mild hybrid. It has a 48-volt belt starter generator (BSG) system similar to other mild hybrids from other automakers; that means electric power alone cannot drive the vehicle.
What makes the Levante Hybrid different is the use of an eBooster which isn't "mild" at all. Together with the turbo, the Levante Hybrid has a combined 330 horsepower and 450 Newton-meters of torque at 2250 rpm; those figures are quite high for a 2.0L with a 48-volt BSG.
Maserati says that the Levante Hybrid has 90% of its maximum torque at 1750 rpm and that its 0-100 km/h acceleration time of 6 seconds is comparable to the V6 petrol Levante. Emissions are cut down by 18% versus the petrol version and 3% versus the diesel version.
Maserati says they opted for the 48-volt BSG because it offers customers what they want: lower emissions, enhanced fuel economy, but a thrilling Maserati drive experience. As such, Maserati focused their efforts on making the vehicle feel, drive and have the growly sound like a true Maserati without using speakers or amplifiers.
As with other Maserati Levante models, the Levante Hybrid comes with Q4 all-wheel drive, air suspension as standard, a limited-slip differential, torque vectoring (via intelligent braking), liberal use of aluminum in many of the components (i.e. suspension, hood), and a multi-mode drive system that can be set to your preferences from Sport, Normal, or Off-road. Customers can choose a Harman Kardon speaker system or the one from Bowers & Wilkins.
As to the Philippine launch, we have yet to get confirmation as to when the Levante Hybrid will arrive, though our earliest estimate would be sometime in mid-2022.