Motoring / Cars and Bikes

Maserati Levante Esteso boats superior performance and revamped engine

Maserati’s first SUV gets as added push, making it a strong contender in the SUV circuit

May 19, 2017 | By AFP Relaxnews

Maserati’s first SUV can already compete with the best that Porsche and Mercedes have to offer in terms of styling, luxury and exclusivity. Now, thanks to some under-the-hood tinkering courtesy of Bavarian tuners Novitec, it should be a match in terms of performance, too. Reaching up to 494 horsepower, the Maserati Levante Esteso is the next one to watch.

Unlike the Range Rover, the Porsche Cayenne or the BMW X5, the Levante is currently only available with a six- rather than eight-cylinder powerplant under its hood. While Novitec hasn’t added two extra pistons, it has remapped the engine and the twin turbos so that the car can now output 494hp and 660Nm of torque (up from 424hp and 580Nm). That means it can go from 0-100km/h in 4.8 seconds — that’s nearly a whole second faster than the standard model— and up to a 272km/h top speed.

As well as greater speed, the Novitec Esteso also comes with greater visual aggression, thanks to a wide-body kit that increases wheel arch space — to better fit the 22-inch offset ‘Y’ spoke alloy wheels, but also improves handling. The tuners have added a front bumper spoiler to reduce front axle lift and there’s a working hood scoop to help with engine breathing. The car also gets side skirts that will help it hold the road plus upgraded air suspension that drops the car’s ride height by as much as 25mm. Of course, many of these new external components can be ordered in naked carbon fiber so that the material’s weave becomes a decorative element.

Like all serious aftermarket tuners, Novitec can also overhaul the car’s interior with a choice of leather and Alcantara and of course wood and other trim elements. But perhaps best of all, considering the styling of the standard Levante, clients can pick and choose the elements they want—whether it’s the full aerodynamics package, or simply an engine mapping upgrade.

For more information, do visit Novitec.