We've never been Maserati's entry-level Ghibli sedan. It always charged a little too much for its combination of decent styling mixed with way too many FCA-parts-bin parts and offered a driving experience that left a lot to be desired when compared to offerings from the German firms.
That last bit might be changing with the introduction of an expanded Trofeo lineup, which it unveiled on Monday and includes both the Ghibli and the Quattroporte, as well as the Levante Trofeo, which we've already experienced. All three models get some updates to their aesthetics and electronics, but it's the Ghibli that's benefiting the most, thanks to the inclusion of the excellent Ferrari-built 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 that has seen duty in the aforementioned and the Quattroporte GTS.
Now obviously a 580-horsepower, 538 pound-foot V8 isn't going to fix all of our issues with the Ghibli, but hot damn, they'll be easier to ignore below the snarl of that lovely engine. Also likely to smooth out some of the Ghibli's rougher edges is the inclusion of a retuned Integrated Vehicle Control (IVC) system and launch control. The sedans' new heart helps to propel them to a top speed of 203 miles per hour. The Levante is no slouch either, with a max of 187 mph.
Maserati also took this opportunity to make some tweaks to the infotainment setup, not that the UConnect-based system was terrible before. Still, now the Ghibli and Quattroporte both get a larger 10.1-inch high-resolution display, while Levante keeps its 8.4-inch screen but gets improved resolution and graphics.
The folks in Turin also made some changes to the cars' advanced driver-assistance systems. Weirdly, Maserati's press release didn't specify what these are beyond having added Active Driving Assist, which should allow some limited self-driving functionality on highways and urban roads.
Beyond the inclusion of the V8, the most significant changes that Maserati made for its three Trofeo models comes in the styling department. The taillights get the most significant change, with all three models adopting a new boomerang-like LED design that adds a bit of aggression and structure to the rear. All three models also get red-accented badging denoting their higher-performance status. Unique 21-inch wheels are standard on Ghibli and Quattroporte, while 22-inch wheels are available on the Levante.
Maserati expects to start sales on the 2021 Trofeo models in Q4 of this year, but it's not telling us what kind of a price premium they'll command over standard versions of the cars. However, based on the nearly $47,000 price jump from the 2020 Levante GTS to the Trofeo, we're betting it's going to be a big one.