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The 2021 Maserati MC20 coupe.

Handout

Maserati is returning to its roots and entering a new era – one that’s focused on racing, performance and electrification, according to Davide Grasso, CEO of Maserati. The vehicle that marks Maserati’s rebirth is the MC20 supercar.

"We’re going back to racing, back to where everything started for us,” Grasso said during the mid-engine coupe’s virtual unveiling yesterday.

Maserati has a lot riding on the MC20 – after all, it is Maserati’s first supercar in more than 16 years. And there’s significance to the name. “MC” is short for “Maserati Corse,” which means Maserati Racing in Italian; 20 stands for 2020, the year of its launch and the beginning of the Italian automaker’s new era.

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Maserati’s new halo car, the MC20, will first debut as a gas-powered coupe, followed by a convertible and then an electric version. Details on the electric model are slim, but the gas-powered coupe will be powered by a new twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 engine, which produces 621 horsepower and 538 lb.-ft. of torque – all mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission driving the rear wheels. The new combustion engine, dubbed “Nettuno,” is developed entirely in-house using “state-of-the-art Formula 1 technology that’s 100-per-cent made in Modena,” boasts Grasso. The engine marks another significant milestone for Maserati – it’s the automaker’s first engine built entirely in-house in more than 20 years.

Built on a carbon-fibre chassis, the MC20 is relatively lightweight at less than 1,500 kilograms. According to Maserati officials, it’ll be able to hit 0-100 km/h in about 2.9 seconds on its way to a top speed of over 325 km/h.

The MC20's stunning styling bears some hallmarks of the automaker's MC12.

Handout

Produced in about 24 months, the MC20 is visually stunning – a head turner with striking similarities to the MC12, which marked Maserati’s racing comeback in 2004, as well as other exotic brands such as Lamborghini. McLaren and Ferrari. Compared to the competition, the MC20 is understated and elegant. Butterfly doors, the first on a Maserati, and sharp creases and angles cover every inch of its voluptuous body. You won’t spot any ugly giant hood scoops or massive rear spoilers. Instead, there are attractive design cues such as a wide mesh grille with a large trident emblem in the centre, slim horizontal rear LED taillights and carbon-fibre accents adorning the air vents and rear diffuser. One faux pas in the design: the trident badge cut into the rear window. It looks tacky and out of place. Six exterior colour choices include Rosso Vincente (red), Blu Infinito (blue), Bianco Audace (white), Giallo Genio (yellow), Nero Enigma (black) and Grigio Mistero (grey).

Inside, the focus is on the driver, connectivity and technology. Dual 10-inch screens for the digital instrument cluster and Maserati’s new multimedia system let the driver access many functions such as the audio and climate control. The carbon-fibre central console looks clean and uncluttered with only a few items at your fingertips such as the wireless smartphone charger and the drive-mode selector, which lets the driver select from GT, Wet, Sport and Corsa. A fifth mode is “ESC Off,” which deactivates the electronic stability control and allows the driver to really let loose on the road. On the steering wheel, you’ll find the ignition button on the left and the launch control, designed for track driving, on the right side. To show its focus on the future, the MC20 is filled with a full-range of technology features such as internet-connected navigation, on-board WiFi hotspot capability, Amazon Alexa and smartphone connectivity.

The MC20 features Masterati's first butterfly doors.

Handout

Like most supercars, the trunk space is lacking in the MC20 – there’s only about 150 litres of space between the frunk (aka front trunk) and rear trunk. The interior cabin space is lavish with leather appointments, carbon-fibre and Alcantara everywhere.

The MC20 will roll off the line at the Viale Ciro Menotti plant in Modena, Italy, where other Maserati models have been built for more than 80 years. The factory features new production and painting lines boasting environmentally friendly technologies.

The Maserati MC20 will go on sale later next year. Prices aren’t available yet.

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Tech specs

2021 Maserati MC20 coupe

  • Base price: TBA
  • Engine: 3-litre twin-turbo V6 with 621 hp and 538 lb.-ft. of torque
  • Transmission/drive: 8-speed dual-clutch automatic/ RWD
  • Fuel economy (litres/100 km city and highway): 11.6L (EU combined)
  • Alternatives: Lamborghini Huracan EVO, McLaren 720S coupe, Ferrari F8 Tributo, Porsche 718 Cayman

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