Maserati Grecale review – performance and 0-60 time
Four-cylinder Grecales are hot-hatch quick, but the Trofeo steps up several notches with its 523bhp V6
In GT or Modena guise, the Grecale’s spec sheet reads more like a hot hatch than a traditional performance SUV. With turbocharged 2-litre engines and power figures in the region of 300bhp, the GT and Modena achieve 0-62mph times of 5.6sec and 5.3sec respectively, running to 149mph top speeds. For reference, the V6-engined Porsche Macan S – which is cheaper than either Grecale – dips under 5sec for the 0-62mph sprint and tops out at 161mph.
Maserati has made a real effort to tease some character and drama from what is a relatively ordinary engine. Ramping up from Comfort to GT or Sport modes brings extra zip and response, a snortier exhaust note and crackling gear changes, but it’s a shame you can’t mix and match these attributes to your taste. In Sport mode the throttle becomes, if anything, too sharp and abrupt, and we’d prefer to dial out the contrived gearchange kick that’s programmed into the racier modes.
At normal speeds the four-cylinder engine can sound coarse, but it’s flexible and punchy when it needs to be. The hybrid system works to cover up torque gaps as the turbo gathers its breath, and the powertrain generally sparkles much more than the 2-litre engine you’ll find in an Alfa Stelvio Veloce. That being said, it doesn’t feel as rich or refined as rivals with more cylinders.
That’s where the V6-engined Trofeo comes in. With 523bhp, a 3.8sec 0-62mph time and a 177mph top speed, it's in the same ballpark as the Stelvio Quadrifoglio for outright performance. It lacks the fireworks of the MC20’s engine but when you get into the meat of its torque band from 3000rpm the delivery begins to reach expectations, its willingness to rev encouraging you to chase the redline.
Sadly, this iteration of the V6 lacks the aural drama of the MC20’s motor, the natural, guttural growl replaced with a synthetic tone that’s borderline nondescript. The eight-speed auto box punches through the upshifts to match the engine’s pace with decent sized paddles, but it’s not as quick to downshift as you’re expecting and short gearing can make for a busy powertrain when you’re pushing.