Best of the Best 2013: Sedans: Maserati Quattroporte

Throughout its 50-year production run and through what is now its sixth generation, the Maserati Quattroporte has been a beautiful, fast, and comfortable sedan. The latest version, designed by Maserati’s in-house design team, replaces the decade-old fifth generation, a beauty that was penned by Pininfarina. The 2014 model is just as attractive and a little bit bigger—8 inches longer and 2.5 inches wider. Most significantly, Maserati has added four inches of legroom for rear-seat passengers, which should make the $135,000 sedan an attractive option for buyers who prefer riding to driving. The cabin features sumptuous Italian leather seats, and wood or optional carbon-fiber trim. A 15-speaker, 1,280-watt Bowers & Wilkins sound system also is available as an option.

Those who do drive the Quattroporte will enjoy the new power train, which comprises a Ferrari-assembled twin-turbocharged engine—either a V-6 or a V-8—and a super-sophisticated ZF 8-speed automatic transmission. The V-6 Quattroporte has optional all-wheel drive, which is a first for Maserati.

When the Quattroporte debuted in 1963, it was the fastest sedan on the market, and the model has not lost a step. The V-8 engine produces 524 hp, which is enough to push the big four-door from zero to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds. Top speed is 190 mph, which makes the new Quattroporte Maserati’s fastest sedan ever. Among current Maserati models, only the MC12 sports car can achieve a greater speed. The ride is supple yet well controlled; handling and high-speed stability remain core attributes of the Quattroporte.

Maserati, www.maserati.com