Levante on trial

Maserati SA recently loaned FMM a Maserati Levante S Gransport to display on the museum’s stand at the Knysna Motor Show and for a few days evaluation. Wayne Harley drove the vehicle to and from the show and Mike Monk tried out the premium SUV on L’Ormarins’ PlaasPad test facility and off-road track.

The Levante S is powered by a twin-turbo 2 979 cm3 60-deg V6 pumping out 316 kW at 5 750 r/min and 580 N.m of peak torque between 1 750 and 5 000. It is mated with a ZF eight-speed multi-mode auto transmission with seven different shift options spread over Normal, Sport and Off-road settings. The Q4 all-wheel drive system with an active transfer case that can apportion drive from 0:100 to 50:50 as grip conditions demand. Combined with drivetrain technologies including active air suspension, Skyhook active damping and an electric air shutters for maximizing engine temperature, drag, performance and economy, the Maserati is certainly a state-of-the-art machine brimming with advanced driving assistance systems. Top speed is 264 km/h, 0-100 km/h takes 5,2 seconds and the combined fuel consumption is 10,9 litres/100 km.

Wayne thoroughly enjoyed his time with the car and considered the Levante to be on par with other premium rivals such as Porsche and Mercedes-Benz. ‘But what the Maserati offers is Italian style combined with air of exclusivity – it makes you feel a bit special,” he said. On PlaasPad, the Levante S proved to be a superb performer with excellent dynamics for a 2 110 kg SUV, while off-road its ability to traverse challenging terrain with ease was also impressive. An SUV for all seasons.