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Paris show: Maserati reveals hardcore GranCabrio MC

New nose: The Maserati GranCabrio MC gets the same aggressive frontal treatment as the racy MC Stradale coupe.

More aggressive Maserati GranCabrio variant surfaces, based on MC Stradale coupe

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Maserati logo25 Sep 2012

MASERATI has revealed the GranCabrio MC, a hardcore version of its flagship four-seat convertible inspired by the ballistic GranTurismo MC Stradale coupe.

Set to headline the Italian car-maker’s stand at this week’s Paris motor show, the GranCabrio MC is said to “combine the style, charm and practicality of the Maserati GranCabrio with the performance and features derived from Maserati motorsport programme”.

Official details are scarce, having been withheld until the public debut on September 27, although the company claims the MC is 48mm longer than the standard GranCabrio due to a more aggressive aero package.

This package includes the same aggressive front end design as the lightweight MC Stradale Coupe for improved air flow and downforce, plus a rear spoiler on the boot-lid with an integrated brake light – available in either body colouring or a special carbon finish.

The MC will hit European showrooms in limited numbers from the start of 2013, while Maserati’s Australian distributor, European Automotive Imports (EAI), says the car remains “under consideration” for the local market.

Should the car arrive here, it will almost certainly be priced above the current GranCabrio flagship – the Sport – which is priced at $338,000 plus on-road costs.

EAI imported a small number of MC Stradale coupes to Australia in the middle of last year, each priced at $364,900 – a $56,400 premium over the GranTurismo S Coupe.

Powertrain details and performance figures remain a secret, but expect the flagship GranCabrio to get the same hotted up 331kW/510Nm version of the Ferrari-derived 4.7-litre V8 from the MC Stradale and GranCabrio Sport.

European reports suggest this engine will be matched to the regular GranCabrio/GranCabrio Sport’s six-speed ZF automatic gearbox rather than the Stradale’s aggressive ‘MC Shift’ robotised manual gearbox – a nod to the GranCabrio’s role as a grand tourer rather than a supercar.

Unlike the more race-inspired Stradale – which had two fewer seats than the normal GranTurismo coupe in order to reduce weight – the GranCabrio will keep its four-seat layout.

The unveiling of the hottest GranCabrio variant scotches rumours the Fiat-owned brand would display a lightweight two-seat coupe concept, potentially based on the 4C from sister brand Alfa Romeo, at the Paris show.

As we have reported, Maserati is gearing up for a rush of fresh metal over the next two years, starting with the GranTurismo Sport coupe – the most powerful GranTurismo yet with 7kW more than the MC Stradale – in early 2013 The roll-out will continue with an all-new flagship Quattroporte sedan due next year and a Jeep-based sports-luxury SUV called either Kubang or Cinqueporte by the end of 2014.

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