Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne previously confirmed plans to build a Maserati SUV from a Jeep platform by 2012, but at the time, he stopped short of revealing any additional information. However, the CEO apparently let slip that the new SUV will likely use engines supplied by Ferrari.
In an interview conducted with CNN at the Detroit auto show, Marchionne revealed the SUV — like other Maserati offerings — will feature engines built by the legendary Italian sports car manufacturer. A V-8 engine would make sense, but Marchionne also indicated the SUV could receive a V-12 engine as well.
“It will be a rock and roll engine,” he said.
Despite the hint, rumors continue to run rampant as to just what engine could be stuffed underhood. Both the 4.2-liter or 4.7-liter V-8 engines used in the Quattroporte and Gran Turismo are almost certainly candidates, but engineers could evolve the design, potentially incorporating direct fuel injection in the future. If a twelve-cylinder option is approved for production, it will likely bear some resemblance to the 6.0-liter V-12 used in the 599 GTB and GTO, which is built from the same engine architecture.
What is known, however, is that the Maserati SUV will make use of Chrysler’s WK2 platform, which underpins both the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee and the 2011 Dodge Durango, and eventually used for the forthcoming 2012 Jeep Grand Wagoneer. Previous reports indicated that all variants — including the Maserati — will be built within Chrysler’s Jefferson North assembly plant in Detroit, Michigan.