Fast, light and 'most powerful'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 06 May, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 06 May, 2011, 12:00am


Tseung Kwan O will be the centre of Hong Kong's car world this evening, when Maserati dealer Auto Italia unveils the new GranTurismo MC Stradale at the Shaw Studios.

Launched at September's Paris motor show and presented tonight by celebrity Charles Kwan, the MC Stradale (HK$2,343,100) is 'the fastest, lightest and most powerful' Maserati available, the Italian marque says.

The new car shows how the Trident marque can tweak its road cars with driving enhancements it developed on the track.

Founded in Bologna in 1914, based in Modena and owned by Fiat since 1993, Maserati has an illustrious racing history with legends such as Tazio Nuvolari in the 1930s, and Stirling Moss and Juan Manuel Fangio in the 1950s.

Maserati developed the GranTurismo MC Stradale because the marque's fans wanted a road-legal supercar which looked and drove like the GT4 and Trofeo cars that have proved such wows on the track for the past year.

The marque is used to such demands: in the 1990s, the Ghibli Open Cup race car spawned the Ghibli Cup; the Trofeo GranSport inspired the GranSport MC Victory, a decade later; and the FIA GT-winning MC12 was developed from the MC12 Stradale. The Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale is similarly inspired by the Maserati GranTurismo MC's Trofeo and GT4 configurations, with a new front splitter, bumper, bonnet, sills, front panels, exhaust and rear bumper. Offered with an optional roll cage and four-point racing harness, the 1,670kg (dry weight) and 1,770kg (kerb weight) two-seater is 4.933m long, 1.915m wide and 1.343m high, and parks with 925mm front and 1.066m rear overhangs, along with a turning circle of 10.5m on a 2.942m wheelbase.

The marque also simplified the GranTurismo MC Stradale's dashboard, plushed its interior with new materials and gave it a 320-litre boot, but the car's highlights are its track-tuned mechanics.

The MC Stradale has been fitted with a 450 horsepower, 4.7-litre V8 engine that can produce 510Nm of torque for a top speed of 301km/h, and is 10hp more powerful and 20Nm more punchier than the impressive 1,770kg (dry weight) and 1,880kg (kerb weight) GranTurismo S.

The MC Stradale also produces more aerodynamic down force and power without using more fuel, and its 48:52 front-rear weight distribution eases handling 'and even tyre wear', Maserati says.

The car's upgraded MC Race Shift electro-actuated transaxle gearbox promises to cut gear-shift times to just 60 milliseconds and the possibility of sprints to 100km/h in just 4.6 seconds. It is also the first Maserati to have a dedicated Race mode alongside its improved Auto and Sport options.

Other track-inspired fittings include new Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes, custom-developed Pirelli tyres and carbon-fibre race seats.