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2022 Maserati Levante Trofeo Overview: All Concerning the Extremes


The primary main swing comes from merely trying on the Levante Trofeo. It is a very engaging SUV, with muscular fenders, a sharply creased hood and the company grille that appears higher right here than on both of Maserati’s sedans. This SUV appears particularly menacing in my tester’s Rosso Magma paint (a $17,000 choice!), which performs the aggression word properly alongside blacked-out trim and 22-inch anthracite-finished alloy wheels. Hints of carbon fiber peek via on the decrease bumper, however the automotive is mostly devoid of the stuff — a optimistic private word, as a result of I believe it is getting fairly performed out. The rear finish retains issues fascinating with a sloping roofline that offers this ute a hatchback-ish look, and you will by no means hear me complain a few large set of tailpipes.

Open the Levante Trofeo’s pillarless door, although, and the pendulum begins its return journey. The leather-based is supple, the shift paddles are outstanding and the Alcantara microfiber on the headliner provides a premium contact, however that is the place the visible love affair ends. The high-gloss carbon-fiber trim appears and feels chintzy, and the satin-finish plastic across the middle console controls is even cheaper. However probably the most unacceptable a part of the Trofeo, which begins at $157,695 together with vacation spot, is the window and headlight switchgear. The windshield wiper stalk, begin button and headlight toggle will be discovered on almost each different Stellantis car, and regardless of flicking a little bit of chrome onto them, there isn’t any ignoring that the window switches had been designed within the DaimlerChrysler period. These components really feel about as low cost as you possibly can think about.

Fortunately, the Levante Trofeo has a enough quantity of practicality. The door-panel cubbies are on the small aspect, however they’re deep sufficient to carry a water bottle. There is a storage tray forward of the cup holders, in addition to a large spot beneath the middle armrest atop that large transmission tunnel. Even with that sloping roof, the rear seats are greater than comfy sufficient for 2 adults. The one sore spot right here is the trunk, which provides simply 20.5 cubic toes of storage behind the second row, a far cry from the BMW X5 M (33.9 cu. ft.), Mercedes-AMG GLE63 S (33.3) and Porsche Cayenne (27.2).

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Many components of the inside are good, however can we please transfer previous shiny carbon fiber? It is somewhat performed out.

Andrew Krok/CNET

Preliminary driving impressions of the 2022 Maserati Levante Trofeo ship the pendulum again towards the good things at full pace. Its engine is an absolute peach. This twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8 places out 580 horsepower and 538 pound-feet of torque, sufficient to shoot this ute to 60 mph in simply 3.Eight seconds. The sounds coming from the tailpipes are merely glorious, whether or not it is in the usual Strada or the brand new balls-to-the-wall Corsa mode. Even once I’m not being sort to it, the V8 is clean and freed from any undesirable harshness. The eight-speed computerized transmission swaps gears with the identical diploma of silkiness, to the purpose the place I by no means really feel the necessity to take issues into my very own palms by way of these fixed-position paddles.

Taking the Levante Trofeo out to my favourite native driving roads reveals extra pleasure. Regardless of the drive mode, the Maserati is pleased to be tossed into corners. There is a good bit of physique roll, even in Sport and Corsa modes, however I desire it; limits are communicated properly earlier than they’re reached, and in a 580-hp SUV weighing a hair beneath 5,000 kilos, that is for one of the best. The 265/35R22 Continental CrossContact all-season tires present the Levante with ample grip, the steering is exact and the throttle packs the correct amount of sensitivity.

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Not solely does this engine rip, it additionally appears fairly good.

Andrew Krok/CNET

However for each motion on this Maserati, there’s an equal and reverse response. Total, the Levante’s air suspension is somewhat confounding. In its default setting, the journey is concurrently wishy-washy and stiff, feeling too delicate over mild undulations and too harsh over inconsistencies. Transfer to a sportier setting and the floaty bits are changed with extra on-road ruthlessness, which is not enjoyable except I am on a freshly paved highway. The brake pedal is extraordinarily delicate, a sport-SUV aberration, which makes clean stops tough. The entrance seats are constructed for the Rubenesque (one other Stellantis-wide phenomenon), so my torso slips and slaps in opposition to the perimeters with every successive switchback. Gasoline economic system leaves rather a lot to be desired, too, at an EPA-estimated 13 mpg metropolis and 20 mpg freeway.

The ultimate high-water mark for the Levante Trofeo does not even come from Maserati. Residing on an 8.4-inch touchscreen, the automotive runs a reskinned model of Stellantis’ Uconnect, referred to as Maserati Contact Management Plus. This method is superb, with above-average responsiveness and a menu structure that’s simple to grasp. Security tech is spectacular for an costly efficiency car, too, with normal equipment together with computerized emergency braking, parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, a surround-view digital camera, lane-keep help and adaptive cruise management. Energetic Driving Help combines the final two options to carry the Levante in its lane on the freeway, however I discover its microcorrections to be somewhat too apparent; it is smoother once I do it myself.

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Maserati’s reskinned Uconnect infotainment system is one company element that should not obtain a single criticism. It is fairly good.

Andrew Krok/CNET

A number of the 2022 Maserati Levante Trofeo’s sins can be forgivable if it weren’t priced like a limited-run watch. Whereas the Levante lineup begins at $83,295 (together with $1,495 for vacation spot), the Trofeo requires almost double that quantity. Throw in fripperies like $450 for carbon-fiber paddle shifters, $400 for upgraded alloy wheels, $500 for gloss-black brake calipers and the virtually felony $17,000 coat of purple paint, and my tester waters the eyes at $173,550. That is tens of 1000’s of {dollars} greater than you’ll spend on a BMW X5 M or a Porsche Cayenne Turbo; each might make much less energy, however each are additionally vastly higher automobiles for extra causes than I’ve ink.

Shopping for a automotive on this phase, at this worth, is a extremely emotional buy. And in that vein, there are numerous causes to contemplate the 2022 Maserati Levante Trofeo. The powertrain is pleasant, and it is partaking when the driving will get spirited. However a deeper look previous the preliminary luster reveals its fair proportion of points. The Levante Trofeo is a sport SUV that may elicit every kind of feelings. Too unhealthy they are not all optimistic.

About the author: SubSellKaro

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