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Maserati is planning to launch its second SUV by the turn of the decade, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) CEO Sergio Marchionne, has confirmed this week.

Speaking with industry journal Automotive News Europe, the Italian carmaker’s boss said the new crossover will sit below the Levante in Maserati’s line-up, based on Alfa Romeo’s ‘Giorgio’ architecture – which currently underpins the Giulia sedan and the Stelvio SUV.

Marchionne told the publication the smaller SUV model will help to boost the company’s annual volume to between 70,000-80,000 units – during the first three quarters of this year the company has clocked 36,000 units globally, up on last year’s 23,900.

FCA’s boss also said that the new Maserati will likely have a unique powertrain despite sharing its underpinnings with the Stelvio, which is offered with four-cylinder turbocharged petrol and diesel engines, along with the twin-turbo V6 shared with the Giulia QV.

With the smaller, more affordable SUV, the Italian marque will be employing a similar strategy to German rival Porsche, which dramatically increased its annual sales volume with the Macan SUV following the introduction of the larger Cayenne.

In Australia, the Levante has become the company’s most popular model, shifting 25 units in September as part of 332 year-to-date (YTD) sales. By comparison, the Ghibli sedan managed 16/163 (September/YTD) registrations, while the GranTurismo and GranCabrio combined sit at 7/45 units for the same periods.

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