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A Chinese Grand Tour

Maserati

Last month Maserati completed a nearly 10,000 km Tribute to China Grand Tour held to mark the fifteenth anniversary of the Italian manufacturer in the Chinese market and to pay tribute to the traditions and cultural heritage China and Italy share.

The Grand Tour, starting in Shanghai, a city famed for its blend of Chinese and Western culture, lasted about 40 days and welcomed around 380 Maserati customers and journalists. The participants travelled on four routes, climbed sixteen mountains, and crossed 70 cities in ten provinces, creating an M-shaped journey across the country.

The stunning landscapes of China provided the ideal backdrop and manifested the bespoke attributes of the Maserati Quattroporte, Levante, and Ghibli, while the distinct Chinese culture and ancient craftsmanship echoed Maserati’s long history and the endless pursuit of Italian excellence.

Maserati

A spectacular backdrop

This year is a landmark year for Maserati as it marks a double anniversary: the 105th anniversary of the legendary brand and its 15th-year journey in China. For 105 years the iconic Italian luxury vehicle brand has been crafting driving experiences that combine performance, comfort, style, refinement, and enjoyment of life.

So, to celebrate the double anniversary Maserati designed four exclusive routes that matched the striking natural landscapes and unique culture of China with the distinct Italian flair and elegance of the Maserati brand.

The participants crossed the peaks and rivers of the Yangtze River area, visited cultural sites to discover ancient wisdom, followed the historic Silk Road to learn about its significance in linking cultures of the East and West, and traversed the vast and breath-taking mountain landscapes of Western China.

The Grand Tour involved all the current Maserati models, with the Quattroporte, Levante, and Ghibli each revealing their unique characteristics along the way. The dynamic design of the Ghibli, with its elegant styling and lines, was in fine contrast with the exquisite and skilfully constructed architecture in Eastern China and Pingyao Ancient City.

The Maserati SUVs, the Levante, Levante Trofeo, and GTS, conquered the challenging terrains of the Gobi Desert on the ancient Silk Road and traversed the mountains and glaciers from Dunhuang to Chengdu. Whether set against rivers, mountains, highlands, or ancient temples, the iconic Quattroporte exuded charm and sophistication in every location.

Maserati

Outstanding craftmanship

Besides being noted for their dramatic beauty, China and Italy share an outstanding tradition of creativity, craftsmanship, and refinement. As a brand born in Italy, Maserati inherits the same values of its country. During the Grand Tour, participants experienced some of the most famous Chinese art and craftsmanship monuments, from the magnificent architecture of ancient Buddhist temples to the former residences of Tang dynasty poet Liu Zongyuan, and famous Qing Dynasty painter Zhang Daqian.

The inspirations from these innovators last until now, in the same way, that the Maserati brand continues to be inspired by the Italian masters of the past. The Grand Tour participants were also inspired by China’s longstanding passion for crafting works of beauty and sophistication, like the Dongyuan letterpress printing, the “living fossil of ancient printing techniques”, and the exquisite lacquer-ware of Pingyao Ancient City.

As Maserati celebrates its 15th anniversary of entering the Chinese market, Maserati completed the memorable journey in tribute to China and its rich culture. As the longest tour organized by the brand in recent years, the Grand Tour lived up to the unrelenting passion of Maserati for enjoyable driving.

Text: Paul van Gass | Images: Maserati

 

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