Speaking at the UK launch of the 2019 model year Levante, Mike Biscoe, Maserati GB General Manager, confirmed that demand for the diesel-powered version of the SUV was still strong. There are also no immediate plans to add hybrid power to the premium 4×4 model.
With 275hp from a 3.0-litre turbocharged V6, the diesel Levante has marked the least costly route into ownership of the Italian-built SUV.
However, the new 2019 Levante sees the addition of a new turbocharged V6 petrol engine, offering a more affordable option for buyers wanting to eschew diesel power. Built by Ferrari in Maranello, the new 350hp version of the 3.0-litre V6 engine bridges the gap in the Levante range between the diesel model and higher-powered 430hp petrol Levante S.
With a list price of £61,425, the new 350hp petrol Levante undercuts the Levante S by more than £11,000. The diesel Levante is still the cheapest model at £58,315.
The Levante is of key importance to Maserati brand, accounting for 50% of total sales for the brand. Sales in China and North America have also proven to be significant, with the Levante GTS recently being crowned as the ‘SUV of Texas’ for 2018.
Adding a luxury SUV to the range has also proved significant in attracting new customers to the brand. Some 90 percent of Levante buyers are new to Maserati, with 70 percent attracted from key competitor brands.
Along with the addition of the new petrol engine, the changes to the 2019 model year Levante aim to ensure it remains competitive against rivals such as the Porsche Cayenne and Audi Q8.
Revised exterior styling for the GranSport trim level, a wider range of exterior and interior trim choices, and updates to the infotainment system are part of the revisions.