Maserati will never become an EV brand to rival Tesla

Maserati is gearing up to launch electric versions of most models in its lineup, but it will never become an EV-only brand to rival the likes of Tesla.

“This is a brand that needs combustion engines,” Maserati’s North American chief, Al Gardner, told Motor Trend in an interview published on Friday. “It needs that raw emotion,” he added.

Al Gardner, Maserati North America chief

Al Gardner, Maserati North America chief

That’s a bold statement, considering how quickly things are changing in the automotive industry, but Gardner isn’t alone in his thinking. Porsche CEO Oliver Blume last November said that the 911 will never become an EV.

Maserati plans to introduce electric versions of its Levante SUV and Ghibli and Quattroporte sedans by the end of 2022. The Italian brand also plans to replace its aging GranTurismo with a new sports car based on 2014’s Alfieri concept, and this new sports car, also due by the end of 2022, will also come as an electric version.

Maserati electric car roadmap

Maserati electric car roadmap

The electric powertrain that will be available in these models will be known as Maserati Blue. The system will consist of up to three electric motors and run on 800-volt battery technology.

All future Maseratis will also be available with a plug-in hybrid powertrain, along with a gasoline engine on its own (or possibly with a mild-hybrid setup).

Maserati 2022 roadmap

Maserati 2022 roadmap

But Maserati has more pressing issues than deciding whether it should be an EV brand or not. Sales were down 41 percent in the first quarter of 2019 from a year ago, after dropping 28 percent in 2018.

In his interview with Motor Trend, Gardner said Maserati’s main problem isn’t with the product but a lack of awareness. No doubt the brand will be counting on the fresh product to alleviate the issue.

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