The Maserati Quattroporte is a luxury four-door sedan made by Maserati of Italy. The name translated from Italian literally means "four doors". There have been five generations of the car, each separated by a period of roughly five years.
In 2004, Maserati Quattroporte started production of the Pininfarina-designed Quattroporte, with the same dry sump 4.2 L engine as the Coupé, Spyder and the new GranTurismo but improved to 400 hp (SAE) (298 kW). Due to its greater weight than the Coupé and Spyder, the 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) time for the Quattroporte is 5.6 seconds and the top speed is 167 mph (269 km/h).The Maserati Quattroporte was unveiled to the world at the Frankfurt Motor Show on September 9, 2003 and made its US première at the 2003 Pebble Beach Concours d'Élégance. It is a continuation of the long tradition of Quattroporte luxury sedans in the Maserati line-up.
The 47% front / 53% rear weight distribution (with the DuoSelect transmission) allows the large sedan to have very nimble handling. This weight distribution is achieved by setting the engine further back in the chassis behind the front axle to shift the load back towards the cabin, and the adoption of the Transaxle layout which sees the gearbox rear-mounted in unit with the differential. The transaxle architecture is normally reserved for high performance sports cars and is the first time applied to a luxury sedan. The Quattroporte's weight distribution maximizes traction and thrust during acceleration so that the car remains exceptionally stable and well balanced at all times. With the newer automatic transmission, the transmission is adjacent to the engine and weight distribution changes to 49% front / 51% rear.
The Maserati Quattroporte is offered in four configurations: the base Quattroporte, the Quattroporte Sport GT, the Quattroporte Sport GTS, and the Quattroporte Executive GT.
The Sport GT version of the Maserati Quattroporte was introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 2005. It features a reworked transmission, exhaust, 20 inch wheels, suspension modifications, and special interior and exterior accents including a mesh grille.
The Sport GTS version of the Maserati Quattroporte was introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September of 2007. It features a revised suspension, 20 inch wheels, and larger rear tires for improved handling. The brakes received iron/aluminum rotors for greater fade resistance. Various interior upgrades include alcantara and carbon fiber accents.
The Executive GT version of the Maserati Quattroporte was introduced at the North American International Auto Show in January 2006. It is based on a special Neiman-Marcus version, with 19-inch (480 mm) ball-polished wheels and an Alcantara suede interior roof lining. Other features include chrome side and front grills and a wood-trimmed steering wheel. Included standard 4WD GT version is a Maserati comfort pack with ventilated, heating, massaging rear seats, retractable wood rear tables, and curtain shades on the rear windows.
The Duo Select transmission was available at the launch of the fifth generation Maserati Quattroporte, in 2004. Duo Select was an advancement of the CambioCorsa unit first used in the Maserati Coupe. It is a Ferrari based semi-automatic transmission, located at the rear of the car.
Because of reliability problems and rough shifting with the Ferrari based semi-automatic transmission, a full automatic transmission with 6 speeds (by ZF) was presented at the Detroit Motor Show in January 2007 with the first cars delivered right after the launch, marketed as the Maserati Quattroporte Automatica. The Automatica was made available with paddle-shifters on the Sport GT model as standard, but on the base model and the Executive trim levels paddles became an optional extra. With the Automatica, Maserati completely redesigned the under pinning of the car to fit the new conventional automatic transmission and torque converter right behind the engine. They also converted to a wet sump oiling system for cost saving purpose. For the same reasons, the wet sump method is also featured on the up-and-coming Maserati GranTurismo.