Romantically named, like all Maseratis, after famous winds around the world, from the Mistral in the 1960’s to the Bora, Khamsin, and latest model Ghibli, the Levante certainly lives up to its force of nature meaning.
This beautifully crafted SUV can indeed change in an instant from a calm and supremely comfortable cruiser, to a thrilling and dynamic true driver’s car capable of a super impressive 4.1 second 0-62 sprint in Levante Trofeo guise, rising to just 6 seconds for the entry model. This dual personality makes it a perfect car for all occasions.
Imposing, handsome and substantial, viewed in the metal the Levante is an impressive and incredibly stylish car – as you’d expect from any model with a hallowed Maserati badge. Ours on test was the rather beautiful Levante GranLusso, resplendent in a special Blue Nobile paint which sparkled and shimmered in the sun. This was set of wonderfully by 21-inch Anteo rims with bright red Rosso calipers, and ample yet tasteful chrome, plus the famous trident badge, side vents and bold black and chrome grille.
The cabin is a work of art, every surface, detail and feature is well made, stylish and built to last. All controls are perfectly placed, and it’s a cockpit which is a masterclass in ergonomics and aesthetics combined.
The interior colour scheme of ours was tan and black with blue highlights on the seats which looked classic and expensive. The seats were in Cuoio premium leather and Ermenegildo Zegna silk and easy to adjust to achieve your optimum position – even if short or tall, and could be heated too, along with the steering wheel, ideal for the colder days ahead. A panoramic sunroof let in plenty of light, but with large windows, the cabin is bright and airy anyway, even when closed.
Out on the road, whether long motorway journeys or running local errands, the Levante is a pleasure to drive or be a passenger in. Its sports coupé lines not only look great but contribute to class-leading aerodynamic efficiency, which, with Maserati’s excellent engine and autobox delivering from a hefty 500Nm of torque and 350bhp up to a whopping 730Nm and 580bhp for the super-sporting Trofeo model, provides thrilling power at the slightest accelerator touch.
For a sizable SUV, the Levante is remarkably agile too, and easy to park thanks to a crystal clear 360 camera system. There’s barely any wind or road noise, the suspension on the ‘normal’ setting is just right for most passengers and it’s hard to imagine many other cabins being as comfortable for all occupants on even the longest journeys.
As you’d expect, the Levante is fitted with just about every safety system you could think of, to give you peace of mind whether you’re tackling rough terrains, inclement weather or navigating your way through hazardous pedestrian-filled busy streets.
With regard to noise – there’s one particular sound you certainly don’t want dialled down – and that’s the fantastic throaty growls from the engine and exhaust. You can even listen to the engine notes on the website to whet your appetite should you feel so inclined.
Being a proudly Italian make, it’s probably no surprise a host of fashionable accessories and customisations are available, to enable you to fit and style your Levante to your very particular tastes. Even the choice of rims is exceptional – from minimal and modern to the beautiful flower-like 21-inch Eracle style, and you can select from, no less than, five brake caliper colours too and a host of wheel centre caps.
For those who love an adventure, you can bedeck your Levante with a plethora of useful and stylish accessories, from roof rails, bars, boxes and racks, to bike, ski and snowboard carriers. Maserati even offer their own luxury pushchair and child’s car seats too.
All in all, a luxurious, class leading, versatile, powerful and wonderfully stylish SUV for all occasions and seasons.