Detroit motor show is a milestone for automotive industry. It will be remembered as an important turning point for Maserati. After the announcement from Fiat’s CEO Marchionnne, Maserati is not the old Maserati as we know.
For a quite long time, Maserati SUV rumour was buzzing in automotive world. And many people know that it was going to happen one day, because current Fiat CEO is so ambitious to turn Fiat into Volkswagen, an automotive empire. But he is doing it by ruining the brands! If you say this to him, he would say Porsche has an SUV also. But Porsche is not Maserati. Maserati is one of the most respectful brands in automotive industry and has a longer heritage than the Ferrari, therefore the products should reflect this cultural identity.
An SUV for Maserati and manufacturing it based on Jeep Grand Cherokee chassis is the worst thing you can do to Maserati. I don’t know anything worse than this, a Maserati based on Jeep! In order to produce SUV, Fiat will pour lots of money to this project and also Fiat has to compete with Land Rover, Porsche, BMW, Mercedes, Audi. I can predict their point, Maserati is a niche brand and it will be a niche SUV! But it won’t be, because the competitors are the masters of SUV and they offer everything which consumers looking for. For that reason, Maserati SUV project will be a very expensive for Fiat. And also a big question mark for long term sales performance!
My opinion; instead of pouring cash into this interesting project, Fiat can focus on shifting the quality of Maserati vehicles and offer more technology. Maserati has an excellent design philosophy and if they offer a similar level of technology to Germans, nobody can keep up with it. Instead of spreading the energy of company into different projects, they should focus on improving the current projects.
Maserati SUV will receive high demand for short term but after the consumers lose their excitement towards the vehicles, everything will be the same!
Thanks to World Car Fans website for photos.