Maserati GranTurismo Folgore plugs in: first sight of electric coupe

Published: 12 April 2022

► 2023 electric replacement for GranTurismo
► 800-volt architecture promises fast charging
► All-electric coupe first, cabrio could follow

Maserati has teased its first fully electric car at the Rome E-Prix 2022 – giving us a taste of the new battery-powered 2023 Maserati GranTurismo Folgore. It was driven by group boss Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares and if you strip away the lightest of camo you get a very good idea of what the new e-Maser will look like at launch next year. 

The company has already embarked on its grand electrification plan which, at least on the face of it, will make the company a Mediterranean alternative to Teutonic brands such as Porsche and Audi. The next-generation version of the GranTurismo will arrive in showrooms in 2023 to challenge the likes of the Porsche Taycan, Audi e-tron GT and Tesla Model S.

Maserati Gran Turismo rear teaser

Unusually, Maserati has been quite candid with its plans. The company has been teasing the next GranTurismo for months now, circulating official images of camouflaged prototypes (above) – which has certainly saved our spy photographers a job. It’s also provided us with a good idea of the new car’s styling ahead of its launch date.

The new GranTurismo’s design is an evolution of the previous model’s, sharing the classic long nose, short tail GT car shape. Its headlight shape and lumpy bonnet have been lifted from the MC20 supercar, but its wide front grille remains faithful to the old car. It will be built at Maser’s Mirafiori plant in Italy.

So, you must know everything about the powertrains, too?

You would hope so – but sadly not. Despite being so open about the GranTurmiso’s design, Maserati hasn’t issued many details about the car’s electric powertrain. For now, the brand has only hinted that the system will have ‘more than 50 percent more power’ than the old V8-engined model, which would place its power output around the 680bhp mark.

Next year will also see Maserati re-enter the world of racing after a 13-year hiatus, with the company recently securing a place on the 2023 Formula E grid. The brand plans to use the R&D from its racing programme to benefit the GranTurismo, claiming the car will ‘offer cutting-edge technical solutions’ derived from its race car.

Maserati Gran Turismo track teaser

We haven’t yet been told anything about the car’s battery capacity – but, given its GT car brief, we’re expecting it to be quite large to enable a long touring range. The GranTurismo’s main rivals can cover around 300 miles on a single charge, which Maserati will have to match if it wants to be competitive.

However, Maserati has confirmed that the car will have an 800-volt electrical system, which promises ultra-fast charging speeds. Porsche uses a similar setup in the Taycan, and that car can take on 62 miles of range every five minutes when connected to a suitably powerful 270kW DC rapid charger. That works out as an 80 percent charge in just 20 minutes.

Maserati Gran Turismo teaser with espresso

There are also some conventional spyshots of GranTurismo prototypes on the net which have exhaust tips poking out of their rear bumpers, suggesting Maserati isn’t ready to abandon combustion power just yet. However, we expect the old model’s 3.8-litre V8 engine won’t make it through another round of European emissions regulations.

So Maserati could easily pinch the 3.0-litre V6 engine from the rear of the MC20 and drop it into the nose of the new GranTurismo, giving the next car improved performance and lower emissions in one fell swoop. When it’s bolted into the supercar, the engine has a maximum output of 621bhp and 538lb ft of torque, although that’ll probably be reduced for the GT to create some distance between the two sports cars.

Hold fire. Weren’t we promised a new GranTurismo in 2018?

Maybe. But Maserati is still hoping you’d forgotten about that… In fact, this new model was thenb supposed to break cover in 2020, but several issues (including the coronavirus pandemic and the merger of FCA and PSA into the Stellantis supergroup) conspired against Maserati and delayed the project again. Just be thankful it’s happening at all!

The notion of a new GranTurismo was first floated back in 2014 with the Alfieri concept, but the project has been steadily evolving since then to take factors such as electrification into account. Maserati even toyed with the idea of giving its new sports coupe a plug-in hybrid powertrain, as shown by the official slide below.

Maserati Gran Turismo concept investor slide

By Luke Wilkinson

Bauer Automotive staff writer. Unhealthy obsession with classic Minis and old Alfas. Impenetrable Cumbrian accent