RE­SIS­TANCE IS FU­TILE

Luxe mar­ques have cot­toned on to the SUV mar­ket.

The Peak (Hong Kong) - - The Brief -

If the re­cent wave of new lux­ury sports util­ity ve­hi­cles (SUV) is any­thing to go by, car man­u­fac­tur­ers are cav­ing in to cus­tomer de­mands – of­ten de­fy­ing deep-rooted tra­di­tions. But they are tak­ing the “sports” part of SUV very se­ri­ously. Porsche has been the go-to mar­que for over a decade now with its Cayenne if any­one wanted a SUV that boasts some sem­blance of sporti­ness and badge ap­peal.

But the buy­ers, es­pe­cially those in China, now have more op­tions. The lat­est to chip away at the Stuttgart com­pany’s share is one of its fiercest ri­val from Italy. Maserati, the car­maker bet­ter known for build­ing some of the sex­i­est coupes, cabri­o­lets and sports sedans, has un­veiled its own ren­di­tion of a sports car on stilts, in the form of the Le­vante, at the Geneva Mo­tor Show.

The de­sign lan­guage is un­mis­take­ably Maserati: large in­set front grille with the Tri­dent, triple side vents on the front fend­ers and an­other logo on the C-pil­lar, not un­like any Maserati in show­rooms to­day. Un­der the hood, this new SUV uses Fer­rari-made V6 en­gines that is able to pro­duce up to 424 horsepower in the S guise. Many own­ers are un­likely to take this car off-tar­mac, let alone in the wilder­ness, but with its power and more pli­ant sus­pen­sion, the Le­vante would cer­tainly work well at ab­sorb­ing the in­creas­ing un­even­ness of our roads.

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