2008 Maserati Quattroporte: review
How did Italian luxury look in 2008?
Almost everyone likes this generation of the Quattroporte. It's good looking, has a good engine, it sounds great, and it's very comfy.
Fun fact: This car is what started my love for cars. I was always impressed by it's technology (which is considered barbaric in this day in age), and then I finally heard it being driven past like 3,000 RPM and realized "oh my god, this sounds good".
The cockpit. Elegant..
Let's start with the interior. The QP was sold with lots of colours for the interior, we got the rare blue with wood trim. The QP features a small LCD screen in the middle of the dashboard that shows things like the gear, time, outside temp, speed, odometer, trip info, tyre info, climate info, and a few other things.
POV: you're driving the Quattroporte
There's buttons on the steering wheel for all the things that are deemed to be important. There's up and down buttons which only change stations / skip tracks on the CD, there's the volume, there's the phone button for if you have the phone package (we don't, they put the button there in any case), an info button which I can't find much of a use for, a quick mute, and an audio source change button. There's also 3 buttons on the back of either side of the steering wheel, and I can't make out what they do...
"Is this touchscreen?" (no)
The QP has a 10-speaker sound system with a CD player in the screen (as seen above) as well as a 5-disk CD changer below the steering column and an AM/FM radio. For ease of use, the CD changer is operated by using the screen, so you don't have to lean down and push a button to change disks. This Maserati does NOT have bluetooth (I think later Mk5 QPs had BT, but this one didn't), however we've retrofitted bluetooth by swapping out the CD changer for a bluetooth receiver. Of course, you could always retrofit BT to any car with an FM radio by using one of those 12v adapters, but A) the sound quality is not as great, and B) you don't get steering wheel controls.
You may notice in the above picture that there's buttons labeled "TV" and "TEL". What are those for? Well, you could buy a phone package and a TV package for the QP. Unforunately, we have neither, but from what I've heard about the TV package at least, you could actually watch TV on your screen. Now could you do it while driving? I don't know. Unfortunately I can't tell you what it's like because pushing the button gives me a "TV NOT AVAILABLE" message.
There's also a button that says "NAV". Does this car have SatNav? Yes, but... it's complicated. You see, the satnav data isn't actually stored in your car, they gave you a CD with the nav data, and you were supposed to keep that CD in the internal CD player. This is the error I get when I try to go to the nav:
Why? I don't know
...We lost our disc years ago. Furthermore, I can't find a new one on eBay (nor do I really want one, since they're horribly out of date), and Maserati stopped making those discs ages ago, so I can't ask Maserati for one. If anyone can find me someone who makes map update discs for these older Maseratis, tell me in the comments! I just wish Maserati would offer a software update for this screen that doesn't require me to swap out the cool looking screen, but it gives me modern software. Oh well...
The controls on the infotainment system are not great. Those arrow buttons generally do nothing, and you do all the selecting with the right knob (the left knob is for volume). I tried setting the clock the other day, and when I tried to it would just beep at me and not set the clock, no error or anything, it just wouldn't set. Turns out the car needed to have GPS reception before I could change the clock. Stupid... Usually, to get from a menu on the left of the screen to a menu on the right of the screen, you have to scroll past the bottom of that menu before it goes to the next. Why? Ask the Italians.
Tech (by modern standards)
Next to my boss's Range Rover, these are the most comfortable seats I've ever been in. Now, granted, this is the only luxury sedan I've ever been in, but they're still comfy as hell. They're leather (because what luxury car doesn't have leather?), so as a result they're very soft and squishy. Both front seats are ventilated and heated (although it's hard to feel the ventilation, it's there), and the drivers seat has a "massage" function where the lumbar is pushed in and out slowly. There's also a "self adapting" mode for the lumber and tightness of the seat, which is great for me, since I can never get it right myself...
Front seat comfort
The ride is also very good in normal mode. However, this car has the "skyhook" suspension, so when you put it into sport mode, the exhaust sounds a lot better, but the suspension goes into sport mode, and that's not so good.
Interior: Back seats
My dad's idea of a kids play pen, I guess
Growing up, the back seat is where I spent most of my time. This trim is actually the "Executive GT" trim, and from what I've heard, executive cars are designed with the rear right seat in mind. These seats are just as comfortable as the ones in the front, but there's no massage, and there's ventilated seats (you still get heating though). What I always found interesting is tbere's a button in the armrest to move the front passenger seat forwards. "Why is that?", I wondered. Well, if you're a buisiness man sitting in the back with your laptop, and the passenger seat is in your way, you can move it forwards so you have more room to work. You can also use it as an excuse to piss off mum in the front seat.
"It looks all sticky", I hear you say. I'll explain why in the reliabality section.
You do have quite a lot of room in the back, the noise isn't bad, and you get climate controls (which can be disabled in the front, which sucks because someone always leaves them turned off and then I have to ask, "can you push the button that says "REAR" on the climate controls?"). For both sides, there's a vent in the climate control console, and there's another vent on the pillar.
What's interesting is the rear sunshade. You probably see those 2 buttons to the right of the door lock buttons (and perhaps you spotted them in the infotainment pic above) and thought "what are those?". Well, those raise or lower the rear sunshade, which is nice if the chauff- I mean, driver doesn't like looking at his rearview mirror and it's bright outside.
back seat comfort
Interior: Other features
Yes, it does open.
The Quattroporte also has a sunroof, interior lights pointed to passenger/driver alongside a centre light (in both the front and the back), dual zone climate, homelink (garage door opener), vanity mirrors with lights (duh), cigarette lighters (I don't mean the 12v plug, it's literally a lighter that goes into the 12v plug. That's how it got the name. It comes with one for the front and one for the rear), motorized headrest, power seats (duh), automatic headlights, front and rear fog lights, headlight washer (not a wiper, but it does spray both the headlights and the windows when you pull the wiper stalk) and a drink cooler if you use the cupholder in the centre console (which I never do, because it's a very shallow cupholder).
The "oh shi-" handles aren't really handles, but rather these nice loops. It's a nice touch.
I'm aware, I can't park.
This really doesn't need a paragraph. The Maserati QP is a sight to see.
Our Maserati is a pre-facelift.
Any angle you look at this car, especially in silver, and it'll make you say "oh my god, did that happen?"
One of the things on Maserati's mind was definately styling. This car was styled by Pininfarina, so naturally it's a sight to behold.
styling: it's no lambo, but it comes close
Made in Modena.
One of the most notable features of this car is the engine. This engine is a Ferrari-Maserati F136 engine, which is a V8 displacing 4.2 litres. Yes, you heard me right, Ferrari-Maserati. The F136 is the same engine used in the F430 (although, that engine displaces 4.3 litres instead of 4.2), and because it has prancing horse roots... well, I'll let you hear it yourself.
I wish GoPros would get rid of the wind...
This engine produces 400 hp at 7000 RPM, and 339 lbs-ft at 4250 RPM. It also has a redline of 7500 RPM. It's mated to a 6-speed automatic gearbox, which is smooth unless you're in sport mode, then it kinda jolts when you change gears at lower revs.
That's as good as it gets, take it or leave it.
This is where the QP starts to look... bad.
While the rear seats are super comfy, you feel really guilty if you put stuff on it. Furthermore, they don't fold down, so you're stuck with that small boot space. And no, that's not a storage compartment in the bottom, that's the spare tyre.
I'm trying my hardest to think of things to write here, but there's so little to say when it comes to practicality (or lack thereof). Uhh.... there's pockets in the front doors? And there's a glovebox? and a centre console? That's..... that's it. This car was practical enough to be my dad's daily driver for 7 years, but I think we only ever road tripped with it once...
Oh yeah: one more thing. This car gets like 13 MPG in the city and 19 MPG on the motorway. It could be worse, but that's pretty damn low... I'd love to throw a turbo on this car, not for more power, but so my wallet doesn't get... yeah.
practicality: at least it has a boot!
It's a fact. Nobody has EVER bought a Maserati because of the reliability. Ours has been reliable *enough* to get us to 75,000 mi and counting, but it has not been an easy road.
When we bought this car in 2010, it was half off the list price because one of the valves was messed up. The car at that point only had 35,000 mi. We've had several issues since then. And when the car does have an issue, it's not gonna be cheap. This summer, we needed a steering adjustment (steering was loose), an oil change, a Tyre Monitoring System replacement, and new tyres. We took the car to Maserati and they quoted us $18,900. We took it to a Italian car repair shop and they charged us $3,500 for all that. So if you are planning on buying a used QP, make sure you have a cheaper but trustworthy Italian repair shop nearby.
After we got everything replaced, me and my mum went for a drive. As I was parking, there was a bird in my spot, so mum rolled down the window to "yell" at it to get out of the spot. Once the bird was dealt with, the window made a loud POP halfway up the track. It wouldn't go up anymore after that, so the window was stuck half open. After that we had to buy a new regulator, which was like $400.
I meantioned earlier in the article about the sticky buttons. A lot of the soft-ish buttons kinda... became sticky in the heat. Maserati replaced most of those buttons, but some buttons (like the overhead lights and the rear armrest seat mover thing) didn't get replaced for some reason, either that or they became sticky again.
Oh yeah, and the pic I attached? most of the coolant slowly escaped over the years, so it was running low and was overheating while I was parked. After I took that pic, it went up another tick.
TL;DR: if you're saving up to buy a used Quattroporte, you should set your budget to twice of what it already was, to cover repairs and petrol.
Do I like this car? Yes. Do I love this car? Absolutely. Is it the best car ever? No. But this car will always hold a special place in my heart, ears, and wallet.
2008 Maserati quattroporte executive gt: overall rating
(I'd give 3.75 stars if I could, but drivetribe only lets me do stars by intervals of 1)
Thank you for reading.
This has been 'A teen's review of cars', "issue" number 2. If you liked this, give it a bump, award, and/or...
Follow me is a feature the QP has where if you pull the high beam stalk, you can have the headlights stay on after you exit the car for up to i believe 240 seconds. Each pull of the stalk adds 30 seconds.