Even Maserati has embraced the trend throughout the industry for luxury SUVs and now aims to produce ten times more vehicles by 2015. Fiat’s luxury sports car brand will be expanding its range to include an SUV and a new high-end sedan targeted at U.S. consumers. Maserati's plan to offer cars in higher volumes comes with Fiat's purchase of a majority stake in Chrysler. Last Thursday, the company said that it hopes to sell 50,000 cars annually by 2015. At Maserati’s plant near Bologna in 2010, it had built just 5,675 cars. By 2014, Maserati expects the number of its dealers to double, according to marketing director Massimo Farao.
He said that U.S. is its main market while China is also a target. Maserati is expanding its product lineup in the U.S. to rival that of Mercedes. Apparently, Maserati aims to expand to markets bigger than its niche segment and to step away from its handcrafted origins. A Jeep platform is what will be used on the new Maserati SUV, which will be produced in Detroit at the Jefferson North assembly plant alongside the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
The new high-end sedan will go up against the Mercedes E class, BMW 5 series and Audi A6 and is believed to be built on a Chrysler platform. Since Maserati's small factory in Modena can’t be expanded any further, a portion of its future output will be moved to the ex-Bertone plant in Turin that Fiat acquired just two years ago. Maserati clarified that its Modena headquarters will still be where design, marketing and distribution activities for all its products will be located. [source: Autonews]