Maserati SpA is an Italian manufacturer of high-performance sports cars. It started with as Società Anonima Officine Alfieri Maserati, a car garage with an attached workshop opened by brothers Alfieri, Ettore, and Ernesto Maserati in Bologna, Italy in December 1914. Soon after, Italy joined World War I, during which Alfieri started producing spark plugs in Milan.
When the war was over, Alfieri moved the company's operations along with his spark plug business to an unused bottle factory in a different part of Bologna. The business was then named Officine Alfieri Maserati SA. Alfieri prepared and raced cars for other manufacturers before creating the first Maserati with his brothers. In 1926, they completed the first Maserati car -- the Tipo 26, which proudly carried Maserati's Trident logo which was designed by a fourth brother named Mario. In the 1920s and 1930s, Maserati continued to develop race cars, which included the V4, 16-cylinder race car. When Alfieri died in 1932, Bindo, a younger Maserati brother, was brought into the fold, becoming the company chairman while Ernesto took care of the technical aspect of the business.
Instrumental in bringing attention to Maserati car's performance superiority was Italian driver Tazio Nuvolari winning races for the brand in 1933 and 1934. In 1937, the Maserati brothers sold the company to Italian industrialist Adolfo Orsi, which moved the business to Modena, Italy. The additional funding allowed them to develop more highly successful racing cars.
During the Second World War, Maserati again made spark plugs as well as batteries and electric delivery automobiles. After the war, Maserati started to produce sports cars and gran turismo, also called grand touring (GT) vehicles. At the same time, it continued to build race cars and win races.
In the mid-1970s, Argentinian industrialist Alejandro de Tomaso bought Maserati but sold it to Fiat in 1993. Fiat initially turned management of Maserati to Ferrari, which it also owned, but later grouped it with another property -- the Alfa Romeo. Maserati was eventually designated as the luxury brand of Fiat, which, in 2014, became Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
Maserati entered the Philippine market in 2010, appointing Formula Sports Inc. (FSI) as its official distributor and importer. The Italian luxury car maker kicked off its Philippine venture with the unveiling of the Quattroporte S and GranTurismo S. FSI is owned by Autostrada Motore Inc, which also exclusively distributes Ferrari vehicles locally. A showroom in Bonifacio Global City houses the latest available Maserati as well as Ferrari models in the Philippines.
In 2017, a full-service center for Maserati and Ferrari customers opened in Makati City. The facility boasts of two service pits, four lifters, five open work bays, two assembly rooms, and a lounge area for customers. The facility uses official diagnostics equipment from the two brands and employs certified and factory-trained technicians.
Among the famous nameplates from Maserati are the Ghibli, Levante, and GranTurismo. The Ghibli luxury executive sedan is a global bestseller, with the first of this car rolling out of the factory in 1966. The nameplate's 2018 iteration is offered in two trims: the GranLusso which centers on luxury and comfort and the GranSport, which emphasizes performance and driving dynamics. The Ghibli is available in two engine options. One is a V6 Twin Turbo engine that generates 350 horsepower at 5,500 revolutions per minute (rpm) and 500 Nm of torque at 4,500 to 5,000 rpm. The other is a more powerful version of the same engine that churns out 450 horsepower at 5,750 rpm and a peak torque of 580 Nm at 2,250 to 4,000 rpm. The more powerful engine sprints from a standstill to 100 kilometers per hour (km/h) in 5.5 seconds and records a top speed of 267 km/h. Both engines offer overboost mode, which significantly increases the peak torque.
The Levante is a mid-size luxury crossover SUV. Like the Ghilbi, it is offered in two trims – GranLusso and GranSports – and two engine options – a 350 horsepower V6 Twin Turbo and a 450 horsepower version of the same. The bigger engine runs from 0 to 1000 km/h in just 5.2 seconds and reaches a maximum speed of 264 km/h. The GranTurismo is one of Maserati's most iconic models. This nameplate has seen more than seven decades of powerful race car engines under the hood of luxurious sedans. The latest iteration comes in GranTurismo Sport and GranTurmismo MC variants. Both use a 4.7-liter V8 petrol engine that has a maximum output of 453 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and a peak torque of 520 Nm at 4,750 rpm. The Sport trim has a maximum speed of 299 km/h and can go from zero to 100 km/h in 4.8 seconds. The MC is slightly faster, posting a top speed of 301 km/h and a 0 to 100 km/h acceleration in 4.7 seconds.
Maserati vehicles are manufactured at three plants in Italy. One is the Viale Ciro Menotti Plant in Modena, which has been housing the brand's headquarters since 1939. Two are found in Turin: the Maserati Avv. Giovanni Agnelli Plant which opened in 2013 and the Mirafiori Plant which commenced operations in 2016. In line with Fiat-Chrysler's venture into autonomous driving, Highway Assist autonomous technology has been launched on several Maserati models. At the heart of this offering is the Mobileye vision technology that allows for autonomous driving on select highways.