2012 Maserati Trofeo

We get behind the wheel of the revised Maserati Trofeo, which is the lightest and fastest Maserati money can buy

Overall Auto Express Rating

5.0 out of 5

Just like the legendary racing Maseratis of old, the Trofeo looks great and sounds amazing. It blends the core attributes of the GranTurismo MC Stradale road car with the best motorsport components to create a fantastic race car, that stays true to the firms illustrious competition heritage.

The 2012 Maserati Trofeo is the latest competition version of the gorgeous GranTurismo. Across six weekends a full grid of professional and amateur drivers race them in the exclusive Maserati Trofeo World Series - the only one-make race series to take in three continents.

This hard-edged track-only variant’s huge rear wing and delicate front winglets leave you in no doubt about its intentions. Both these aerodynamic aids have been added to this 2012 version, to increase grip levels and slash lap times.

Yet under all the sporty additions, the Trofeo shares the same underpinnings and 4.7-litre V8 engine as the road car. Still it’s more than 300kg lighter than even the MC Stradale on which it's based, which means performance is sensational.

All of the panels are composite, while the glass has been replaced with polycarbonate. Open the ultra light carbon-fibre door and jump into the stripped out cabin, and it’s clear to see where the weight has gone.

Inside, the upper part of the dash and the classic Maserati clock remains - and unlike on the previous version, it actually works! The rest of the cabin is pure motorsport technology - you get a hi-tech dash and data logger, a central switch panel and a full safety cage.

Press the start button and the 4.7-litre V8 barks into life and, once on the move, a truly amazing soundtrack echoes around the bare cabin, while the exhaust note on downshifts is incredible.

We drove the car in the one-make Trofeo Championship earlier this year. As all cars are run in-house by Maserati’s racing arm, there’s no technical advantages to be had, placing the onus firmly on the driver.

With this in mind ABS and traction is removed, so extracting the best from the Trofeo takes a delicate touch and plenty of skill. The way the Maserati accelerates, stops and grips is incredible, yet the strength of the full race brakes mean you need to be careful not to lock up and flat spot a tyre. While the power on offer mean’s avoiding losing traction and overheating the slick Pirelli tyres is also crucial.

The Maserati Trofeo is a proper racecar that excites drivers and spectators alike. From behind the wheel you can still feel similarities to the road car, and that’s testament to the sporting heart found in all Maserati sports cars.

Most Popular

Exclusive: banned 71-reg number plates released
Number plates
News

Exclusive: banned 71-reg number plates released

Latest DVLA list of banned UK registrations reveals which 71-plates are too rude for the road
21 Sep 2021
£6k Citroen Ami electric city car gets green light for the UK
Citroen Ami UK - front static
Citroen

£6k Citroen Ami electric city car gets green light for the UK

The Ami is coming to the UK with a price tag of around £6,000, making it one of the cheapest ways to get a new car today
22 Sep 2021
New MG HS plug-in hybrid 2021 review
MG HS PHEV - front
MG HS SUV

New MG HS plug-in hybrid 2021 review

We find out where the new MG HS PHEV fits in the highly competitive plug-in hybrid SUV sector
21 Sep 2021