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What further proof do we need to assert that SUVs are here to stay, with chances higher than the Maserati Levante? The Porsche Cayenne set the trend and now all the giants of the automotive industry are falling in line to get their version of a “Sports Utility Vehicle” out on the streets. Although Maserati still tops the list for profit margin in luxury lines of SUVs, they didn’t do it at the cost of their soul, the essence and the feel of a true Maserati is still intact. The Levante looks dazzling, in par with the Italian sports car good looks. Most people will tell you is that looks aren’t everything and they would probably be right, so let’s look into how the Levante compares to the best luxury SUVs out there. Can it hold its own with the likes of BMW X6, GLE coupe by Mercedes Benz or the original trail blazer, Porsche Cayenne? Let’s find out.
Wearing the trident and the corporate face of Maserati, the Levante took most of its features from the Ghibli instead of the Quattroporte. The large front grill features a concave vertical slots are snug in between the lean headlights. The front fenders feature the three iconic port holes, a brand identity in itself. Even though the face seems aggressive, it is befitting to the overall look of the vehicle.
Moving onto the sides, we can begin to make some comparisons between the Levante and the others. All of them feature a raked roof line but unlike the X6 and the GLE Coupe, the Levante’s lining doesn’t slope down as abruptly; there is a sense of an artistic flow to it. The Levante features roof spoilers like the Cayenne which not only looks visually appealing, but gives the illusion of an extended roofline while the X6 and GLE both sport trunk spoilers.
The Levante and the X6 both seem to possess a well-endowed hip, courtesy of the defining character lines while the Porsche and the Merc seem more flat sided. In any case, the Cayenne seems to go head to head with the three new designs despite being the old timer in the series.
Going to the back end, we find tail lamps on the Levante to be a close relative of the ones found in the GranTurismo. That and the dual-tipped exhaust on both sides is a sight for sore eyes. While the roofline on the X6 and the Merc banks suddenly at the beltline on the back, the Levante and the Cayenne has a gentler slope to it.
Taking a peek inside, we find generous amounts of leather and wood in the Levante. All the metal, wood and leather on display helps reaffirm the visual appeal of the Maserati. The Levante features wide rectangular AC vents, a stark contrast from the leather lining, on both sides of the dashboard. The center vents, just beside the center console, are vertically oriented. The Maserati logo is embalmed into the three-spoke steering wheel and that’s pretty much it on the inside.
The Levante has surely signed up Maserati into the top flight of quality SUV game, accompanied by a bright spotlight on it. Top notch design and competitive features is something Maserati is well versed in but whether it will it be enough to go head-to-head against the giants of the SUV class is yet to be seen.