The Ferrari California vs Maserati GranTurismo is a fantastic match up. Both are Italian, front engine V8 grand tourer type cars. Nobody does sports cars like the Italians and for good reason. They simply know how to make the right kind of cars. Italians like perfection and everything from the exhaust note to the design of the dashboard, they will work on cars meticulously. Will you see an Italian car that does not turn heads or raises your hair as it drives by? The answer would be no. Their cars are objects of affection and chances are you have dreamed of owning one ever since you were a small kid.
It is precisely this legacy that has helped Italian carmakers retain an aura of superiority. Naturally, their cars continue to exude class and elegance. Today we take a look at two of the biggest carmakers in Italy: Ferrari and Maserati. These two companies have been in the industry for over a century, competed in motor racing, and have created some of the greatest cars to ever exist.
They pioneered the concept of sharp design, a powerful sonorous engine and luxurious interiors. The blueprint for all sports cars, coupes and supercars has been taken from the rich history these two manufacturers have forged over the years.
The Italian Powerhouses
Ferrari and Maserati are two powerhouses of the automotive industry. They have a rich racing heritage that has helped them create some of the fastest and most powerful cars. While their cars speed and performance is somewhat diluted in these models, they still provide that thrilling experience.
That is the beauty of Italian cars. They are not brutish, they don’t always have to be the fastest, nor are they the greatest in terms of performance. However, they combine all of these elements like no other. The result is a car that looks and sounds exciting. One drive in a Maserati or Ferrari and you won’t be able to stop grinning ear to ear. The experience in an Italian car is simply phenomenal.
They are also expensive machines. They are built almost entirely by hand, contain the most luxurious interiors, and are designed by artisans instead of a machine. If you own an Italian car you like the finer things in life. You like to make statements through your choices rather than through words.
Today we will take a look at two of the great examples of drop top Italian vehicles to ever come out of the stables of Ferrari and Maserati. We make the Ferrari California vs Maserati GranTurismo comparison and help you decide which is best for you.
The Maserati GranTurismo
The Maserati GranTurismo is an icon. It is Maserati’s answer for what a grand tourer should be like in the 21st century. Everything about this car exudes class. The bold design with the sleek lines, the curved rear, the beautiful rims, the signature grille and trident, the bespoke leather interiors, and the sonorous V8. One glance at the car and you will be speechless. While the design has not changed much since its introduction in 2007, it does not need to, they got it right from the beginning and have only had to tweak it.
The GT as it is popularly referred to, is not the fastest. In fact, the car was quite a long way behind some of its competitors when it first launched and still is. As Maserati honed the car, the performance got better and today it is one of the more refined sports cars on the market.
Alas, as we move into the new decade, Maserati has announced plans to go electric or hybrid and close down the manufacturing of one of the greatest cars in its history. The Maserati GranTurismo has many variants and even picking up a used one is no small feat. The car is rare and dignified, and as production winds down, it will only become more coveted. It is important to note that the Maserati GranTurismo we’re referring to in this comparison is in fact properly called the Maserati GranCabrio. This is essentially the convertible version of the GranTurismo.
The Ferrari California
A more recent addition to the ever-growing line-up of cars from Ferrari, the Ferrari California represents the company’s idea of what a mid level exotic convertible should be. The car boasts a sleek design and a slight departure from the traditional Ferrari design when it was first released. It is smooth and curved, lacking sharp lines. It does not have the aggressiveness Ferrari’s are known for and instead looks tamed. In a lot of ways, the Ferrari California looks eerily like the Granturismo, especially with its protruding front bumper.
The car is distinctly different from other cars in Ferrari’s stable. It was made with the intent to lure new owners. The car’s internals, however, is as Ferrari as it gets. The early car is powered by a naturally aspirated V8 engine. It has a higher ride and a very unique design that helps it stand out from the other Ferrari’s on the road.
Ferrari later released what is seen as the facelift version of the original Ferrari California with its successor the Ferrari California T. The newer California T has now got a revised exterior and interior with a new twin turbo V8 engine pumping out 553hp compared to the earlier California’s at 453hp, a whole 100hp less!
The Ferrari California is the first Ferrari to feature a V8 engine in the front (there’s multiple front engine V12 Ferrari’s prior), a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, the first Ferrari hardtop convertible, and it was also the first car with multi-link rear suspension and direct petrol injection.
The breakthroughs the California made were so profound that it has now been etched into Ferrari history. Its legendary status means that it matches up quite well with the stunning Maserati GranTurismo.
The Maserati GranTurismo vs Ferrari California Tussle
Both cars came out in the late 2000s and since then have found a lot of success. They have been among the brand’s leading cars in terms of sales. The result is the brand introducing a slew of variations. The idea is to entice the current customers as well as give prospective ones options.
When you compare a Maserati GranTurismo convertible vs Ferrari California (GranCabrio vs California), you will find that both cars are extremely attractive with their top down. Internally they are quite similar as Maserati makes engines in collaboration with Ferrari. The convertible versions maintain the GT status quo quite well.
To give the California line a little boost in power, Ferrari decided to launch a T version. When you make a Ferrari California T vs Maserati Granturismo comparison you will find that the California T simply dominates. The engine has been boosted to produce 553 bhp, which is almost a hundred more than the GranTurismo.
A more appropriate comparison would be Ferrari California vs Maserati GranTurismo, particularly the Sport variant vs the T. The GranTurismo Sport is a more powerful and meaner version of the GT. It has perhaps what can only be described as the sound of thunder stored in an eight-cylinder engine. The Granturismo Sport has the larger 4.7 liter Maserati engine that is found in all of the higher spec GranTurismo’s including the MC Stradale. It produces 454hp compared to the standard GranTurismo’s 4.2 liter engine with just 405hp.
The match-up is more even and despite the California being more powerful, the GranTurismo Sport gives good competition. We think in this Maserati GranTurismo Sport vs Ferrari California comparison it ends quite evenly.
Ferrari California vs Maserati GranTurismo – Which is Best?
No matter whichever car you choose, you will not be disappointed. However, in our opinion, the Maserati GranTurismo is simply brilliant. It has no caveats in our eyes and its motto of “rarely seen, always heard” is a statement that justifies the very existence of the GT. The Maserati GranTurismo is a true icon in the motoring world and has the looks refined perfectly and Maserati are even looking to continue its legacy in a newer and more refined version in the future.
Whereas you will definitely enjoy a different V8 engine note from the Ferrari and another level of luxury in the Ferrari California but they’ve already replaced the model with the Ferrari Portofino. Yes, the Ferrari badge is extremely cool but it’s not the only thing we consider. In our opinion the worlds best sounding V8 will always been that 4.7 liter Maserati engine and they’ve finally managed to upgrade the infotainment system to something more useable in recent years.
The Maserati’s the full package and is a design on the outside that will remain timeless like almost all of their other Maserati’s. Unfortunately the California already looks aged and a bit out of place.