Home » The New Maserati GranCabrio Really Makes Me Want An Old Maserati GranTurismo Convertible

The New Maserati GranCabrio Really Makes Me Want An Old Maserati GranTurismo Convertible

Maserati Grancabrio Topshot
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It’s not a bad time to be wealthy. While the mainstream side of the new car market is waffling between expensive electrification, high-margin crossovers, and just flat-out enshittification through microtransactions, a litany of seriously fast cars are available for anyone with means. Case in point: The new Maserati GranCabrio, a car everyone knew was coming, is finally here. There’s just one problem: It makes me want its predecessor.

This isn’t a nit-picky thing either, like comparing a current Porsche 911 to its predecessor. Despite looking evolutionary, some vast changes have occurred both underneath and in the market positioning of the new Maserati GranCabrio that makes its father worth a second look.

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Vidframe Min Bottom

Let’s start with the basics to get you up to speed. Maserati currently offers two different two-door models for about the same money — the MC20 supercar and the GranTurismo grand tourer. The GranCabrio is a GranTurismo, um, cabriolet. Very literal, Maserati is. Still, this means the GranCabrio is meant to compete with the Mercedes-AMG SL rather than chase lap times, which makes it a more tantalizing real-world proposition than the MC20, as cool as that car is.

Maserati Grancabrio 1

Up front sits a three-liter twin-turbocharged Nettuno V6 pumping out 542 horsepower in Trofeo trim, and thanks to the presence of all-wheel-drive, Maserati claims the new GranCabrio can dash from zero-to-60 mph in 3.4 seconds. Yep, that’s quick. The only transmission option is a ZF 8HP eight-speed automatic, although since it’s both the gold standard of modern automatic transmissions and controllable through enormous paddles, that’s no hardship indeed. Whether cruising the Italian Riviera or blasting up an Alp, the GranCabrio seems like a promising tool for the job.

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Maserati Grancabrio Interior

Inside, you have two seemingly comfortable seats for front occupants and two likely less comfortable ones in the back, more leather than a Coach store, a soup can-sized analog clock, and a multi-zone climate control panel that looks slightly more complicated than the U.S. tax code. Covering it all is full-bodied sheetmetal that harkens back to a different time. Specially, it carries great hints of 2007.

Maserati Granturismo Cabriolet 1

Maserati’s had an interesting past quarter-century that started with tenure under Ferrari. In 2005, Maserati was ripped away from Ferrari and lumped together with Alfa Romeo, but that didn’t matter — technical merging wasn’t planned, the Quattroporte V had already been engineered, and was ready to donate its bones to a two-door grand tourer. That car was the 2007 GranTurismo, and in drop-top form, was dubbed GranCabrio in most of the world and GranTurismo Convertible in America.

Maserati F136

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Under the hood sat an F136 V8, sharing an architecture with the engines you’d find in the Ferrari F430 and 458 Italia. Sure, Maserati used a wet sump instead of a dry sump and a cross-plane crank instead of a flat-plane crank, but that didn’t kill the character of this engine. Think rich, intoxicating, full-bodied sound in contrast to Ferrari’s banshee wail.

Maserati Granturismo Cabriolet Interior

Of course, the GranTurismo convertible mercifully didn’t use a Ferrari-style single-clutch automated manual transmission as its only gearbox option, as the ZF 6HP automatic transmission came in most models. Silky, smooth, and remarkably quick, it’s a transmission that holds up well today. Speaking of aging gracefully, the chassis features double wishbones up front and a multi-link suspension setup out back, so it has some proper chops to it.

Maserati Granturismo Cabriolet 2

Add in herds of leather and curvaceous sheetmetal, and the old GranTurismo convertible felt like getting a slice of Ferrari at a reduced price and with some extra GT seasoning. It was comfortable, attractive, exotic, capable, and made a fantastic noise. Sure, it might not have been as sharp as a Ferrari California, but it was a bargain compared to the entry-level Ferrari.

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Maserati Grancabrio 2

In contrast, the new GranCabrio leans more Alfa Romeo. It rides on a variant of the Giorgio platform that famously underpins the Giulia, and while the Nettuno V6 shares bones with the Ferrari F154 V8, the 690T V6 in the Giulia Quadrifoglio also shares a bank angle, stroke, and bore with an F154 variant. Unless wind in your hair is imperative, these on-paper similarities are enough to make you wonder if it’s worth splashing the cash on a new Maserati when the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio exists. I mean, the hardtop GranTurismo Trofeo starts at $190,000, some $106,535 more than a Giulia Quadrifoglio, so how much will the GranCabrio cost?

Maserati Granturismo Cabriolet 3

Add in the fact that the new Maserati GranCabrio looks like an evolution of the old GranTurismo convertible, and the old car looks rather appealing in the wake of appalling depreciation. Sure, it won’t be cheap to run, but considering you can pick up a good 2019 GranTurismo convertible for between $60,000 and $80,000, that leaves you with a huge delta to cover maintenance. What can six figures in your pocket do for you?

(Photo credits: Maserati)

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Aardvark775
Aardvark775
1 month ago

Maserati: absolutely legendary for being the fastest…at depreciating.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
1 month ago

Watching Doug’s video on the Maserati Coupe made me start to wonder about the old Maseratis and heavily depreciated cool cars in general. Is it a GREAT idea to buy one for $20,000? Probably not, but at that price who cares? It’ll undoubtedly need costly work at some point but when you’re saving a bunch up front does it really matter as much? It’s not really that much different than buying and owning a more expensive car, is it? And you get to drive around in an actual exotic with a Ferrari V8.

Plus insurance on anything that’s 20 years old and heavily depreciated is way, way less than anything sporty that’s brand spanking new too. I’m kind of coming around to this idea to be honest. Pay cash for something very cool that’s at or near the bottom of its depreciation curve, accept that owning it will come with additional costs, and just enjoy it and enjoy not having a car note.

And who knows, if you take good care of it and don’t pile the miles on it might even appreciate after a few years. Am I doing mental backflips to justify dumb car enthusiast ideas or am I on to something? With a kid on the way I’ve been taking a long hard look at money recently and that makes more sense to me than financing some new $60,000+ enthusiast car does….

Last edited 1 month ago by Nsane In The MembraNe
The F--kshambolic Cretinoid Harvey Park
The F--kshambolic Cretinoid Harvey Park
1 month ago

That’s how I ended up with two vintage-ish MBs that cost the equivalent of $120-140k each today, for considerably less than that. And I’m glad I did. I get more enjoyment out of my $20k SL than out of anything else. Even when the trans fails. I’ll resell it for about what I have into it, and it’ll be years spent driving the most beautiful roadster in history with an incredible engine.

If you can swing it, I recommend it.

Manuel Verissimo
Manuel Verissimo
1 month ago

That was my reasoning when buying my Z4. It’s a BMW so I knew I’d come across some issues, but I take préventive maintenance seriously and DIYed some of the failures I had along the way to keep the cost reasonable.

I’ve onwed it 8 years, put 60k miles on it and I could sell it for the price I bought it today despite the added years and miles.

That same reasoning makes me want to buy a Maserati Quattroporte as a road trip car but I know THAT is a shit idea.

VanGuy
VanGuy
1 month ago

This is only tangential, but is there a particular reason “luxury” cars are so obsessed with analog clocks?

That always bothered me. Like, you’ve put so much effort into removing CD drives (for example, even if I support their removal) to “save space” on the dash, but you’re gonna make room for the less-space-efficient and less-precise-at-a-glance analog clocks? That screen could be several inches taller without that in the way.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago
Reply to  VanGuy

I always assumed its because a large number of six-figure car buyers also buy five-figure watches. And they want to replicate that “well-crafted & needlessly expensive” vibe in the car.

Note: I am a six-figure car buyer who has worn the same two-figure watch for more than 20 years. So my opinion may be worth less than my watch.

Last edited 1 month ago by V10omous
AssMatt
AssMatt
1 month ago

“Blasting up an Alp” is great.

Mechjaz
Mechjaz
1 month ago

Apart from maybe “in France during the French Revolution,” has there ever been a bad time to be wealthy?

MATTinMKE
MATTinMKE
1 month ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

I wouldn’t know, but I’d love to find out!

Querty
Querty
1 month ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

Mother Russia, circa 1917
Mainland China, circa 1966

AlterId
AlterId
1 month ago
Reply to  Querty

Phnom Penh, circa 1976

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