Maserati GranTurismo

    Despite its rather docile power train, the original GranTurismo’s exterior styling represents one of Pininfarina’s most beautiful modern designs. When Maserati’s GranTurismo debuted in 2008, it may have been too highly anticipated: The coupe was often criticized for not living up to its sporting promise. The Pininfarina design—equipped as it was with a 4.2-liter V-8 and 6-speed automatic—delivered more in the style, than in the substance department. For 2009, Maserati combated the quibbles with the GranTurismo S, which hastened the pace with a larger 4.7-liter V-8, stouter Brembo brakes, a stiffer suspension, and 20-inch alloy wheels. Still not enough for a few of Maserati’s potential customers, the Italian brand put to rest all complaints with a new ZF-sourced automatic transmission for the 2010 Maserati GranTurismo S Automatic. But aside from the sporty and not-so-sporty power train options, there also are 19 available paint colors, six wheel designs, and six colors for brake calipers. Furthermore, the seats are draped in one of 10 different leather options, available with monochromatic or contrasting stitching; dashboard and steering wheel leather vary among 10 possibilities; there are five types of dash and door trim; five carpeting options; four headliners; and two different seat belts.

    Pros: There's nothing better than sitting behind the wheel of a proper Italian Grand Tourer with the top down.
    Cons: The Ferrari California offers a bit more flare.

    Photo by Olivier Staub
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