The Car Connection Maserati Ghibli Overview
The Maserati Ghibli is a four-door, mid-size sport sedan from Italy. The newest model in the automaker's global lineup, the Ghibli was added for the 2014 model year in the U.S. and is sold alongside an equally new and related Quattroporte sedan.
The Maserati Ghibli is a rival for vehicles such as the Jaguar XF, Audi A6/A7, BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe, and Cadillac CTS.
MORE: Read our 2016 Maserati Ghibli review
The new Maserati Ghibli
For the 2014 model year, Maserati re-introduced the Ghibli nameplate to the U.S. market with a dramatic and cinematic Super Bowl ad. No longer a coupe, but a four-door sedan with a somewhat coupe-like profile, the new Ghibli does have some ties to the past. Power, for example, comes from a twin-turbo V-6, though displacement has risen to 3.0 liters. The 410-horsepower output of some U.S. models makes it the strongest Ghibli to date. A rear-wheel-drive model is joined by an all-wheel-drive model, while an 8-speed, paddle-shifted automatic is standard.
Today's Ghibli has a lot in common with the larger Quattroporte sedan. The basic structure is shared, along with some powertrain components. The two also have similar styling—for example, the portals along the front fenders as well as the overall silhouette. The Ghibli's interior is luxurious but not overly styled, offering nice wood and leather from Poltrona Frau.
The Ghibli is 11 inches shorter than its Quattroporte cousin, offering five seats and a much tighter back seat. It's the entry-level Maserati, the smallest offered, but still includes the same equipment, design and overall passion of the other models in the range. Its similarity to the Quattroporte may help or hurt it, depending on whether buyers are looking for the best the brand has or the least-expensive Maser.
High-tech features are also available, including audio by Bowers & Wilkins, an in-car wi-fi hot spot, a rearview camera, and Maserati's Touch Control center-stack interface.
For the 2016 model year, the Ghibli comes with stop-start, a hands-free trunklid, blind-spot monitors, a 900-watt Harman Kardon audio system or a Bowers & Wilkins premium audio system, and new Zegna-penned trim packages.
Maserati derived the name of its Ghibli from an Arabic word meaning "hot wind from the Sahara Desert." While completely new, Ghibli is a badge with a long history with the automaker.
Maserati's first Ghibli was a two-door grand touring car with a V-8 engine wrapped in styling by Giorgetto Giugiaro. It was small and low to the ground, with up to 350 hp for the SS model, which made it very popular among sports-car enthusiasts when it came out.
In 1969, a convertible, or spider, was added to the Ghibli range, but by 1973 the Ghibli ceased production.
The name came back in 1992, this time on an angular, modern two-door coupe powered by a pair of small (2.0-liter and 2.8-liter) but potent twin-turbo V-6 engines. Known as the Ghibli II, this car was less popular and less successful than the original, with production lasting just five years. Nevertheless, the car saw several special editions produced, including a racing version, the Ghibli Cup. In its day, the 330-horsepower, 2.0-liter Cup claimed the specific-horsepower crown, beating out exotic supercars like the Jaguar XJ220 and Bugatti EB110.