What self-respecting motor enthusiast does not remember the mythical Maserati MC12 with special affection. That racing car marked an era inside and outside the circuits, discovering today its spiritual successor to the delight of all those who seek a Maserati-style supercar. For this reason today we are going to test the new Maserati MC20and we are not only going to drive it, but we are going to analyze it in detail to discover if we are facing that way of understanding motorsport where the soul defines the car and not vice versa.
We have had to wait a long time for the Maserati range to once again have a supercar with all of the law. But I tell you from now on that this wait has been worth itWell, the Italian firm has taken its time, but in return it has not created another high-performance car in its category, but has managed to give life to a machine that looks and feels different, something that many manufacturers pursue, but that is seldom achieved.
Maserati has achieved the most difficult, and that is to make the MC20 not feel like a copy of what Ferrari, Lamborghini or McLaren already offer.
Aesthetically the Maserati MC20 I dare to consider it as a true work of art. The design department of the Italian firm, led by Klaus Busse, has made a haute couture suit that oozes sportiness, elegance and personality. It is not easy to find success in such a combination, but this MC20 has achieved it with great mastery.
With 4,669 mm in length, 1,965 mm in width and just 1,221 mm in height, this is a car that speaks of speed in the first person. East It is an imposing car, although without falling into the baroque or the stridency that are so fashionable today. The lines of its bodywork draw a car with presence and character, as evidenced by its huge front air intake, the beautiful wheels, the voluptuous wheel arches or the transparent engine cover with the Maserati logo, but as a whole it is not they perceive excesses that make it more striking. Even despite the color configuration of our test unit, the truth is that we are facing a car that maintains elegance and has done well to avoid aerodynamic appendages.
To give life to the interior, Maserati has maintained that philosophy of minimalism and subtlety seen on the outside, giving life to a simple cabin aesthetically, but of good quality and sporty design. Accessing it through a spectacular doors with butterfly style openingthe first thing we observe is that the carbon monocoque chassis manufactured by Dallara displayed in all its splendor. This chassis is one of the great keys that define the MC20, and not only because of its rigidity and lightness, but also because of its philosophy, making it very clear that we are dealing with a car that will have a racing variant.
sitting on their sports seats signed by Sabelt, the first thing that surprises me is how easy it is to access, the comfort of the seats and the space available in the cabin. Looking further I notice an interior that is upholstered in black Alcantara, but with numerous details in blue that give that point of distinction and sportiness that such a car demands. The level of quality in general terms is high, also finding different parts in aluminum and carbon fiber that put the icing on the vision that this car defends.
As I was saying a few lines before, the interior of the MC20 is quite simple in terms of design, something that perfectly defines the driving position. It comes to life through a impeccable touch steering wheel, where carbon fiber and Alcantara are combinednail huge carbon paddles fixed on the column (as it should be) and a digital instrument panel that modifies its design depending on the selected driving mode: WET, GT, Sport, Corsa or ESC off. By the way, the selection of these programs, in addition to the two modes available for the suspension, is done from a rotary control located on the center console, quite close at hand while driving. However, this device has been revised with the arrival of the MC20 Cielo to integrate a screen that improves viewing.
And finally we move on to driving. Seat and steering wheel adjusted, I close the door by raising my left arm, press the start button located on the steering wheel itself and the Nettuno engine comes to life. The engine wakes up with a hoarse, metallic sounda sound that mixes chords that come to us from the engine itself, located just a few centimeters from our head, and from the double exhaust outlet that crowns the rear diffuser. It’s not a shrill sound, let alone exaggerated, but it’s not common in turbocharged V6s either.which shows that Maserati has kept its promise when it comes to “manufacturing” a melody with personality.
We insert first and I head to one of my favorite roads in Malagaa route that starts in San Pedro de Alcántara, continues in Ronda and culminates touring the spectacular Sierra de las Nieves. It is a very special track for me, firstly because as a native of Malaga I know it like the back of my hand, secondly because it offers a changing track that allows you to get the most out of a car like this, and thirdly, because the beauty of the different landscapes we drive through it is really unique.
Covered the first kilometers I realize that this MC20 is not a radical car at all, in its GT mode it is a noble and even comfortable car, easily adapting to the different asphalts and the poor condition of some sections without disturbing driving. Engine and transmission are capable of working very smoothly, with a quick response to any hint I make about the accelerator, but allowing driving without demanding too much. At this point, the MC20 reminds me more of the philosophy of an R8 than that of a Huracán so that we understand each othershowing that despite being a supercar, it is quite usable, which distances it from that more radical spirit typical of Ferrari or even indomitable in the Lamborghini style.
But we reach the first twisty section, a twisting road that forces me to select the “Sport” mode.. Instantly the engine becomes more protagonist, the change becomes more direct and the suspension tenses its muscles. The personality change is clear and the curves follow each other at a really high rate. The good manners as GT have now been transformed into a car that asks for more, that likes to spin high in laps and that encourages you to squeeze every gear change. I especially like the touch and the information that the address returns, a crucial point to feel comfortable in a car like this.
The 630 hp of the 3.0 V6 Twin-Turbo allow us to run a lot, but a lotbeing an engine that feels comfortable in the upper-middle part and that gives its best sound precisely by bringing each relationship to the cut. By tone and volume I cannot deny that this V6 makes me miss the volume and rage of the atmospheric V8 or V12 of yesteryear, but I like the performance of this V6 a lot and together with the 8-speed transmission they make it very easy ” piloting” taking each stretch to the limit. Also, in Sport and Corsa modes it is clearly seen how the differential gains in character to finish each turn with a certain oversteerwhich provides a plus of fun that ends up becoming addictive.
Surprisingly, although the tires and brakes were already somewhat damaged after so many tests by other colleagues, the reactions of the MC20 in any of its modes are noble. Even forcing it, correcting the trajectory or speeding up the braking is possible without having to fight with the car. This MC20 has a high margin to be able to look for the tickles without scares and thus be able to play with the rear on demand, but even exceeding that margin already in Corsa mode, the feeling of control is very high.
Now that it is time to draw conclusions, I reflect deeply on what I experienced today during this test day with the Maserati MC20, thus trying to answer the three questions that I had in my head before testing this car and which I think are the most important for find out if Maserati has made the right choice with this launch.
The Maserati MC20 is a true toy for adults whose price starts at 265,388 euros
First, Is the Maserati MC20 a worthy successor to the MC12? Yes, ignoring the mysticism and exclusivity that the MC12 has reached at this point, the new MC20 is a more than worthy successor by preserving that same philosophy as a supercar. Is the V6 Nettuno up to the task? Yes, because although I will not be the one who denies an atmospheric V12 or even V8, the truth is that Maserati has managed to give life to an engine that runs a lot and very well, lacking some sound, but that hides tons of fun. Does the MC20 offer something really different in its category? Yes, and I think that here is the real key to this car, because it was what this model needed the most, but also the most difficult to achieve.
With this MC20, Maserati has not limited itself to creating a supercar by copying what Ferrari, Lamborghini or McLaren already offer in their respective ranges. Maserati has created an MC20 with an approach, design and driving that exudes its own personality. And that friends I think is, by far, the best thing about this car.