Some time ago, the Maserati brand announced their intention of breaking all relationship with Ferrari, including the use of Ferrari produced engines. Maserati has featured a Ferrari powerplant under the hood of every one of the brand’s vehicles since 2002. So it marks a huge departure from the brand’s direction for almost the past two decades.
Currently, Maserati is still using two Ferrari manufactured engines that include the 3.8-liter (F154) twin-turbocharged V8 engine which delivers power levels from 530 horsepower to 590 horsepower, as well as the 3.0-liter (F160) twin-turbocharged V6 engine covering power levels from 350 horsepower to 430 horsepower. Instead, Maserati will switch to two different Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) engines.
One of those engines was unveiled today in Modena, Italy, and will be powering the upcoming Maserati MC20 super sportscar that will make its official debut in September. The new engine is the result of a technical revolution, one protected by international patents. The project was born from the passion and commitment of a team of highly-qualified technicians and engineers.
The new power unit is a V90° architecture, with a 3.0-liter, 6-cylinder twin-turbo, and features a dry-sump (a classic solution on super sportscars). It delivers 630CV (or about 621 horsepower) at 7500rpm and 730 Nm (or 538 lb.-ft) of torque from 3000 rpm with a specific power output of 210CV/liter (or 207 horsepower/liter).
The new Nettuno (or Neptune) engine will feature three new engine technologies for the Maserati brand. This technology was thoroughly described in an earlier MoparInsiders article. It uses both direct and port injection, twin-spark plugs, and combustion pre-chamber in addition to the regular chamber. The goal is to raise the power-level and improve fuel efficiency.
The pre-chamber is a combustion chamber that is set between the central electrode and the traditional combustion chamber and connected by a series of specially-designed holes. Lateral sparkplugs allow traditional sparkplugs to act as a support to ensure constant combustion when the engine is operating at a level that doesn’t need the pre-chamber to kick-in and a new twin-injection system that uses 350bar of fuel pressure, reduces noise low down on the rev range, all while lowering emissions and improving consumption.
This is the first time that these technologies have been adapted from Formula 1 to a production engine going into a passenger vehicle. The Nettuno is a futuristic engine produced by Maserati’s team of technicians and engineers, protected by international patents.
The other engine coming to the Maserati lineup, which hasn’t been announced yet is the very well known corporate engine, the 2.0-liter GME-T4 or Global Medium Engine – Turbo Four-Cylinder. The engine, in Maserati form, will produce around 330 horsepower and will substitute the entry-level V6 in selected cars starting with the 2021 Maserati Ghibli. This will be the first electrified Maserati powertrain, which will feature a 48-volt mild-hybrid system with belt-start generator technology. This is the same technology that made its debut on the 2019 Ram 1500 with its eTorque engine lineup. Of course for Maserati, it will receive some new functions including a new “coasting” mode.
In the future, many of the next-generation Maserati products should be based on the popular Giorgio architecture (currently underpinning the Alfa Romeo Giulia, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, and upcoming next-generation Jeep® Grand Cherokee) and will use the 2.0-liter GME-T4 engine to be used in a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) form.