It probably isn’t surprising, considering that more and more luxury automakers are looking to add volume product to their portfolios; indeed Maserati has been toying with the idea of a SUV for some time.
Back in 2003, the automaker unveiled a concept called the Kubang at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Now, some 9 years later, thanks to synergies available in the Fiat/Chrysler group, that concept is now a reality; the production version having been unveiled at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show.
Based on the current Jeep Grand Cherokee, the production Kubang delivers its own unique flavor. The styling, penned at the Maserati Style Center, headed up by Lorenzo, Ramaciotti, is quite unlike the Jeep; being fluid instead of blocky and very much in tune with the company’s current design language, as seen on the Gran Cabrio, Gran Turismo coupe and Quattroporte, with a wide mouthed grille, expressive headlights and an almost coke bottle contour to the flanks.
Maserati says, that while the basic structures of the Kubang and Grand Cherokee might be common, the former will boast a Maserati engine, designed and developed in Modena; a specially calibrated eight-speed automatic transmission and Maserati engineered suspension and braking systems. A V8 version is definitely on the cards, though it will be interesting to see if a V6 version and possibly even a diesel becomes available, in attempt to further broaden market appeal.
Stay tuned for more details on the Kubang as they become available.