The Maserati Levante S has gotten its name through inspiration of warm, Mediterranean wind and the 3.0 V6 twin-turbo GDI petrol engine-powered SUV lives up to the expectations of every Maserati enthusiast out there.

Just like the Mediterranean wind the Maserati Levante S can change from a light breeze to an irresistible natural force in an instant through an engine that delivers 321 kw (430 hp) of power @ 5,750 rpm and 580 Nm flat torque in "sport" mode between 1,750 and 5,000 rpm. The Levante is the ideal complement to the Maserati range that includes the stunning Quattroporte, Ghibli, GranTurismo and GranCabrio.

The Levante is also being offered in 350hp 3 litre V6 Twin-Turbo petrol engine alongside the 430hp variant as well as a 275hp 3 litre V6 Turbo Diesel. All engines are combined with the "Q4" intelligent all-wheel drive system - which can transfer torque between the axles instantaneously when required - and an 8-speed automatic gearbox, with integrated Start&Stop System.

Levante S brings to the table a complete package of design, exclusivity and performance with distinct Italian styling mixed with the well admired and longed for Maserati design features.

The interior has been created with the finest materials, most exquisite to the touch, from optional premium leather to Ermenegildo Zegna silk, made in Trivero by the Zegna wool mill with a patented process. The spaciousness of the interior, enhanced by the panoramic electric sunroof, is combined with coupe-sleek external lines and the best aerodynamic efficiency in its category with a Cx coefficient of just 0.31.

The new Maserati Levante S SUV takes the best of Quattroporte and Ghibli architecture that have been evolved to fit the SUV segment needs. The technology applied to every Levante is designed to offer outstanding performance both on- and off-road. Sophisticated suspension - double-wishbone on the front axle and multi-link on the rear, combined with electronically controlled damping, four corner air-springs providing 5 dynamic ride levels (plus one additional park-position), play an essential role in the car's handling.

Furthermore, with the lowest centre of gravity in its class, perfectly balanced weight distribution (50-50) between front and rear, high levels of dynamic torsional and flexional stiffness, and a mechanical self-locking rear differential as standard, when driven on-road, the Levante delivers all the performance and emotion typical of every Maserati.

The height-adjustment of the body position particularly useful in off-road driving guarantees ride comfort at the top of the category; when set to the minimum ground clearance, it enables the car to perform at its sporty best.

The human-machine interface on board is based on an evolution of the Maserati Touch Control system, completely updated to offer even more functionality and convenience: the 8.4" high-resolution screen is capacitive, and can - in addition to the touch system - be operated using the new rotary control in the central tunnel.

A wide range of sophisticated advanced driver assistance systems is available, including adaptive cruise control with automatic Start&Stop function, forward collision warning, automatic brake assist system and lane departure warning. Further options include blind spot alert, surround view camera and a powerlift tailgate.

Two extended feature packs are available for the Levante, a Luxury-Package and a Sport-Pack; they each include a variety of distinctive stylistic and technical contents and enable customers to extensively personalise the exterior and interior of the Levante.

The list of accessories, tailored to the vehicle's high quality and functionality standards, offers a wider array of options than ever before which includes cargo solutions, useful everyday items and a variety of roof carrier or trailer options.

The Maserati Levante is built in a dedicated, completely refurbished and modernized area of the Mirafiori plant in Turin.

Read more on Top Examiner.