What it is:
Maserati’s second attempt at building an SUV; the first was stillborn after it was shown as a concept in 2003. The Kubang will compete against luxury crossovers but will offer more exclusivity and Italian flair.
Why It Matters:
To sell cars in poorly paved areas like China, Russia and South America, Maserati will need something tougher than its sports cars.
Fiat’s ownership of the Chrysler group means that Maserati has access to the Jeep Grand Cherokee platform. The Kubang will also be built alongside the Grand Cherokee in Detroit.
The Quattroporte will get a significantly revised 4.5-liter V-8 with a two-speed eight-speed manual later this year; that powertrain will also find its way into the Kubang. Direct fuel injection, along with a suspension system, will increase fuel economy and bring power to about 500 horsepower.
BMW X5 M, Land Rover Range Rover Sport, Mercedes-Benz ML63 AMG, Porsche Cayenne.
What can go wrong:
Building a Maserati on a Jeep platform, at a Jeep factory, would compromise its brio.
Estimated Arrival and Price:
In late 2013, starting around $70,000 and rising rapidly to $90,000 with options.