The latest rumor on the mill is painting an interesting picture – after we heard Maserati was going to add plug-in hybrid models to its range we would also be treated to a Levante version using such a powertrain.
Since the emissions and fuel consumption regulations are increasingly stringent across the world it only makes sense premium SUVs to adopt such eco-friendly powertrain options. But since Maserati is a rather exotic manufacturer in terms of sales operations, developing such an advanced powertrain would strain its budget too much. Now it appears Harald Wester, the chief executive officer of the Italian brand has tipped off Motor Trend during the ongoing Geneva Motor Show that “a standalone [PHEV] program would be suicide, so we have to look at FCA.” While we’re used to Ferrari donating components to the Maserati group sibling, this time around it’s not the LaFerrari doing the honors (unfortunately) but the Chrysler Pacifica minivan. The latter has just jumped on the production line in the US in the regular guise and the hybridized version is set to follow up later this year.
This means the Levante plug-in hybrid will need another year or even two before seeing the light of day. This means the Italian SUV may borrow Pacifica’s setup: a naturally aspirated 3.6-liter engine mated to a couple of electric motors and a 16 kWh battery tucked under the floor. The full size minivan should be good for 30 miles of continuous operation in full electric mode and a fuel economy rating of 80 MPGe.
Via Motor Trend