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The Italian Job

Driving from Turin to Monaco through the Italian Alps? Here are eight reasons to take the new Maserati Quattroporte

Author James Williams Illustration Brett Affrunti

roadtrip

Starting price: $105,000

 

INTERIOR
A limo-like interior with lumbar-adjusted leather front seats will have you in a Zen-like state as you glide down the Autostrade. The rear seats are also heated to keep pampered posteriors warm in mild Italian winters, and there’s more legroom than in a private box at La Scala.

GLOVE BOX
Your route from Turin to Monaco, via Piedmont’s quaint village of Cuneo, requires a cool head. Fortunately, not only is the climate control softer than a unicorn’s mane, there’s a separate control to chill the glove box, which is roomy enough for a couple of icy Cokes and a box of mints.

DASHBOARD
With an 8.4-inch center-panel touch-screen displaying your tunes, a/c, Garmin satellite navigation system and rear-mounted parking camera, this dashboard is worthy of 007. Dash dials are in analog and digital, and presets remember your exact seat, wheel and pedal configurations.

ENGINE
The twin turbo-charged 3.8-liter V6 Ferrari engine has delicate lag and direct injection. Press “sport” to unleash the beast. Going from zero to 60 in 4.6 seconds, with a top speed of 177 mph, it’s fast and quiet enough to evade the paparazzi camped outside of the Casino de Monte Carlo.

TIRES
They could have gone for run-flats but the Quattroporte is all about the drive. Chunky Pirellis sit on 20-inch alloys, perfect for taking curvy mountain passes at 50 mph without losing your rigatoni. Keep one eye on the asphalt, and the other on the Italian alpine pastures rolling by.

TRUNK
Clean contours make for a well-defined rear end, perfect for an elegant cruise past the Prince’s Palace, the Opéra de Monte Carlo or the Hotel Hermitage. The 530-liter trunk is big enough for four suitcases, but your kids’ bikes will have to travel with the motorcade.

EXHAUST PIPES
Pick any long, snaky alpine tunnel, roll the windows down and listen to that low crackle. It starts like a WWII bomber thundering low over the Mediterranean but crescendos swiftly to an intense, throaty, high-pitched roar, via a raucous choir of four epic exhaust pipes.

TRANSMISSION
Use your manual transmission paddle shifters for Monaco’s Grand Prix street circuit, then choose from another four modes for the rest of the drive. The I.C.E. mode can get up to 33 mpg. We averaged 21 mpg on a 21-gallon tank, but then we weren’t taking it easy!

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