Maserati has unveiled the MC20, its first supercar in over 15 years, through a live digital launch event today. The new supercar will spearhead the brand’s revival in a “new phase” of the Italian brand’s history, dubbed Maserati New Era, including a return to performance-oriented cars and its racing roots.
“We are setting the cornerstone for building the future of Maserati,” said COO Davide Grasso during the launch event in Modena, Italy. “The MC20 is the embodiment of our values, the first of its kind 100% made in Modena. MC20 is the model that starts our new era.”
Instead of relying on Ferrari (previously its sister brand under the FCA umbrella) to provide the powertrain, The MC20 – which stands for Maserati Corse and the year 2020 – will be powered by an engine built completely in-house, the first in over 20 years.
Named Nettuno (or Neptune, after the Roman god which inspired the brand’s Trident logo), the three-litre twin-turbocharged V6 engine is rated to make 630 hp and 730 Nm of torque. Built with an F1-inspired pre-combustion chamber and a dual-spark plug configuration, the mid-mounted engine is paired to an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission to propel the MC20 from 0-100 km/h in less than 2.9 seconds, onward to a top speed of over 325 km/h.
Maserati also quotes a braking distance of just 33 metres to decelerate from 100 km/h to a standstill. Stopping power is provided by 380 mm discs in front and 350 mm at the rear, paired to six- and four-piston Brembo brake calipers respectively.
The unique powertrain is just one part of the equation to the MC20’s overall performance. Built on a carbon-fibre monocoque tub, the new supercar weighs less than 1,500 kg, equating to a weight-to-horsepower ratio of just 2.33 kg/hp.
The bodyshell is also heavily developed using advanced computer-assisted fluid dynamics engineering and over 2,000 man hours in the wind tunnel. As a result, the sleek design manages a drag coefficient of just 0.38 Cd, and devoid of any unsightly extra appendages for aerodynamic purposes, aside from a discreet rear spoiler.
Maserati says that the design of the car is also heavily guided by the brand’s historic identity, and we can definitely see a hint of the iconic MC12 in the front fascia, particularly the pointed snout, wide and low grille, and the vented bonnet in front.
For a touch of flamboyance, the MC20 is fitted with butterfly doors, which Maserati says enhances ergonomics and eases ingress and egress, along with the brand’s trident design sculpted into the glass engine cover. Otherwise, the exterior of the supercar is decidedly minimal.
The minimalistic direction continues inside the cabin, where the dashboard design was made specifically to put the driver in the spotlight, and “nothing must distract them from the sporting driving experience”.
There are two 10-inch screens, one for the digital instrument cluster and another for the Maserati Touch Control infotainment system and the various vehicle settings. The carbon fibre centre console is also simplified with only minimal controls for drive modes selection (GT, Wet, Sport, Corsa and ESC Off), infotainment, power windows, manual and reverse gear for the transmission, and a wireless charger for your mobile phone.
All other controls are relegated to the alcantara-wrapped carbon fibre steering wheel, which itself also only has the minimum-requirement of hardware buttons – engine start/stop button on the left, and launch control on the right – aside from multimedia and cruise control buttons of course.
Aside from the two-seater coupe variant, Maserati has also confirmed that the MC20 will be available in a convertible form at a later date, as well as a full-electric version, in line with the brand’s latest direction to have an electrified variant for every model.
The MC20 will be built at Maserati’s historic Viale Ciro Menotti plant, where the GranTurismo and GranCabrio models were previously assembled. Order books are now open, with production slated to begin before the end of this year.