MASERATI'S BACK! LEGENDARY ITALIAN BRAND RELEASES ITS FIRST SUPERCAR FOR 15 YEARS

Maserati's back! Legendary Italian brand releases its first supercar for 15 years with the £187,000 MC20 packing a top speed of 202mph and butterfly doors

• The Maserati MC20 will cost £187,230 and first UK deliveries will arrive before the middle of 2021
• It is inspired by the MC21 - the last supercar produced by the iconic Italian brand between 2004 and 2005
• The engine is an in-house-designed twin-turbo, twin-injection, V6 producing a massive 622bhp of power
• It goes from 0-62mph in under 3 secs and - thanks to a carbon construction - weighs the same as a Ford Focus
• The MC20 will be the first of 13 new Maseratis in the next 3 years to breathe life back into the brand under the guise of the new Stellantis group, formed by FCA and PSA

Having not sold a supercar for 15 years, iconic manufacturer Maserati has unleashed a stunner for 2021 in the shape of the new MC20, which will cost from £187,230 when it arrives in the UK next year.

It will rival the likes of the Ferrari F8 Tributo, McLaren 720S and Lamborghini Huracan and is powered by Maserati's own V6 engine producing in excess of 600bhp - good enough for a sprint to 62mph in less than 3 seconds and a top speed eclipsing 200mph.

The MC20 is launched to spearhead a return to form for the wavering Italian maker, which has a long heritage in Formula One but has been in a tailspin in recent years. It has promised to unveil 13 new models in the next three years - including electric vehicles - as part of a bid by parent group Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to revive its premium vehicle strategy heading into a merger with French automaker Peugeot SA.

The 'Nettuno' engine is Maserati's first in-house developed powerplant in two decades. 

The V6 motor uses twin-combustion technology and has twin-turbochargers. The result is a massive 622bhp and 730Nm of torque. 

As well as being potent, the engine is pretty clever too - it has a twin injection system to reduce the engine sound at low revs as to not disturb the neighbours or have pedestrians pointing angrily at you as you cruise by. It also improves fuel efficiency and cuts emissions.

The motor is mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch paddleshift, sending thrust to the rear wheels with the help of an array of clever electronic systems. 

This includes a limited slip self-locking rear differential and adaptable performance modes: Wet; GT; Sport; and Corsa for the track. These all modify the response of the suspension, steering and engine and are controlled via a switch on the centre console.

When you do want to put your foot down - and are on a closed road, track or the Autobahn - Maserati says the MC20 will hit 62mph from a standing start in 2.9 seconds - a match for the rival Ferrari F8 Tributo - and has a claimed top speed of 202mph,

Double wishbone suspension all-round and a virtual steering axle means it should be a capable circuit car. 

The incredible performance is as much about the MC20's design as its powerful engine.

It has an all-carbon construction, meaning it tips the the scales at just 1.5-tonnes - that's around the same as a Ford Focus. 

While it might weigh the same, it looks as far from a Ford family hatchback as you can get.

The svelte body, penned by FCA chief designer Klaus Busse, takes inspiration from the MC20's predecessor, the MC12.

This was the last supercar in Maserati's staple; a rebodied Ferrari Enzo in the shape of a Le Mans racer of which just 50 were built in 2004 and 2005 with a price tag of just under half a million quid.

However, unlike the MC12, Maserati has introduced some extra drama in the shape of butterfly doors - because you only achieve outlandish supercar status if the doors open upwards and not out.

The rest of the design is utterly sumptuous. 

The front end has a low and gaping grille, huge air intakes below the LED lights. These funnel the air out from behind the front wheel arches and down the side of the heavily-straked profile.

At the back, the rear haunches are complimented by narrow LED lights strips below a reserved spoiler. Twin exhausts sit within a well-proportioned diffuser and the V6 motor can be ogled through the glass screen. 

Marginally longer than the rival Ferrari and McLaren at 4.559mm, Masrati says it is aimed more towards GT customers than those looking for a fire-breathing sports car, and for that reason has provided 150-litres of luggage space split between a compartment at the back (100 litres) and the front (50 litres).

Inside, the cabin is both simple but packed with tech. It's trimmed in carbon fibre and has a pair of 10-inch screens – one in front of the driver and one for the dashboard. The latter can be controlled using a dial in the centre console.

It has onboard Wi-Fi, wireless smartphone charging, compatibility with Amazon Alexa and an app for the car you can connect to with your phone or smartwatch.

Priced at £187,230 and with first UK deliveries arriving in mid-2021, it will undercut the Ferrari F8 Tributo and McLaren 720S and will be the first in the Modena firm's parade of new vehicles planned between now and 2023 - including an electric version of the MC20.