Revered Italian designer Lorenzo Ramaciotti says the production version of his Maserati Alfieri concept may replace the larger GranTurismo sports car altogether rather than join it in an expanded line-up.
Speaking exclusively with CarAdvice after unveiling the Alfieri concept at the Geneva motor show, the head of global design at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles confirmed work had not started on a direct replacement for the ageing GranTurismo that launched in 2007.
“We have launched the GranTurismo about seven years ago, now it’s time to think about the future, and this [Alfieri] could be the future,” he said.
Asked if the Alfieri could be sold alongside a new-generation GranTurismo, Ramaciotti said: “We have yet to see because today the range of Maserati is getting wider, we have different cars that we didn’t have before like the Ghibli, we will have next year an SUV, so we have to rebalance the whole range.”
The 4590mm-long Maserati Alfieri concept – described by Maserati CEO Harald Wester as “a perfect-sized 2+2 sports car” – is based on a truncated version of the GranTurismo’s platform; its 2700mm wheelbase measuring 242mm shorter than the GT’s.
That chassis was prepared just for the show car, however, with Ramaciotti baulking at the suggestion the Alfieri production car would retain the concept’s underpinnings.
“No, I would not say that. We will see. We could build maybe something more modern.”
Numerous options have been floated for the production model, including reworked versions of the Ghibli or Alfa Romeo 4C platforms, or brand-new underpinnings unique to the Alfieri.
Unveiled in the Modena-based manufacturer’s centenary year, Ramaciotti says the Alfieri concept draws on iconic cars of the past – the 1954 A6 GCS-53 in particular – and sets the tone for the next 100 years of Maserati sports car design.
“I always try to design cars not just for today,” he said.
“I’m trying to design cars that could become classics and I think the GranTurismo is one car like that, the last-generation Quattroporte too, and cars like the Ferrari 456, the 550, can be considered classics.
“I want to design cars that when you look back after a while they still look elegant and beautiful. I think beauty is something that should not fade away just with fashion. That’s why I’m trying to think more outside the fashions and more of the beauty as a whole.”
Maserati has set no timeline for an introduction for the Alfieri, though the new sports model is not expected until 2016 at the earliest.