Blog / Maserati Grecale, Lotus Eletre Are Stunning Additions to SUV Market

Maserati Grecale, Lotus Eletre Are Stunning Additions to SUV Market

Two brands known for their exotic cars recently unveiled new SUVs in order to take advantage of huge demand for this type of vehicle on both sides of the Atlantic. In the case of Lotus, it’s something we haven’t seen in 70 years.

What’s so special about them? Let’s find out…

Maserati Grecale

Maserati already has an SUV. The midsize Levante hit the market a few years ago and quickly became the brand’s best-selling product, but the all-new Grecale that’s slated to arrive this fall promises to enjoy greater success. As a sporty compact SUV, it is squarely aimed at the Porsche Macan.

The Grecale will be available from launch in three models including GT, Modena and Trofeo. The first two boast a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine with 48V mild hybrid technology. Output is rated at 296 horsepower (GT) or 325 horsepower (Modena). An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive system complete the powertrain.

Exclusive to the Trofeo is a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 engine derived from Maserati’s MC20 supercar. This one generates 523 horsepower and allows 0-100 km/h sprints in 3.8 seconds. But wait, something even more electrifying will come a year later in the form of the Grecale Folgore (“lightning” in Italian), Maserati’s first fully electric vehicle.

When looking at the exterior, we really like the low and imposing front grille, the boomerang-shaped taillights that are reminiscent of those on the old Maserati 3200 GT, and the Giallo Corse (yellow) body paint reserved for the sporty Grecale Trofeo. Inside, the driver-centric, clutter-free layout is all about screens—the 12.3-inch centre touchscreen is the largest ever in a Maserati and the brand’s famous watch is now all-digital. One last key thing to remember is that Maserati claims best-in-class interior space.

Lotus Eletre

In order to continue to offer world-class sports cars and ensure a successful transition to EVs down the line, Lotus needs resources. Company executives have decided to do what so many others have done: introduce an SUV and make a lot of money with it.

Set the join the Evija electric hypercar and Emira sports coupe (the latter powered by a combustion engine), the spectacular Eletre is actually the first in a new range of “premium lifestyle performance electric vehicles” to be built at an all-new production facility in China. Units will start rolling off the line later in 2022. 

Combining two electric motors that deliver at least 600 horsepower, it can sprint from 0-100 km/h in less than three seconds. An even quicker variant with 900 horsepower is also said to be in development. Range is estimated at 600 kilometres based on the WLTP standard used in Europe, which likely means around 500 kilometres for us North Americans. Meanwhile, one of the four drive modes available is Off-Road, because this new Lotus is one you can venture off the beaten path with.

The exterior of the Eletre is somewhat inspired by other Lotus models, particularly the two-tone look with a black roof, but the front fascia is even more aggressive and unique. Stunning wheel designs (up to 23 inches in size) highlight the sides, while the rear end is capped by an active spoiler at the top of the liftgate and a full-width LED bar acting as taillights. No less impressive is the cockpit, which puts on a show of its own thanks to a Tesla-like, 15.1-inch touchscreen and an ambient light bar that changes colour to communicate with occupants, Lotus says. How cool!