2010 Top Gear Awards: Cabriolet of the Year
Gorgeous 440bhp V8 Maserati GranCabrio shatters the peace in rural China...
Posted: 14 Jan 2011
On the key, the GranCabrio's 440bhp 4.7-litre V8 rumbles into life. The depth of the sound, the pitch and timbre is uniquely Italian, seductive and familiar and curiously reassuring in this strange and desolate place. The engine settles into a rhythmic thrum as overhead a magpie wheels and mutters. One for sorrow. The whirr and thump of the ZF gearbox causes a key change from the exhaust note, that gentle, distinctive warble full of potent promise.
Breaking from the tree line and dropping sharply towards the saddle of the hills, the first magpie is joined by another. They chirrup and squeal, falling parallel with the hillside in steep, concentric circles before suddenly soaring out into the thin, still air, high over the valley floor. Two for joy.