MCXtrema Takes Maserati Exclusivity to the Track

MCXtrema Takes Maserati Exclusivity to the Track

Maserati revealed its track-only MCXtrema during Monterey Car Week on Friday, August 18.It will be powered by a 720-hp version of the Nettuno 3.0-liter V-6. The company will build only 62 copies, about half of which are destined for U.S. buyers.

In the most basic of terms, the Maserati MCXtrema is a modified MC20 built solely for track use. The two models share a carbon-fiber tub and the same basic engine, but not much else. It’s like the Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport from Modena. But the Porsche is nearly four times as common. Maserati is keeping this model extra exclusive. Only 62 of these track-star cars are planned for production. About half of those will make it to the U.S., which also happens to be the largest MC20 market.

“If you have to ask how much?” or however it goes, seems to apply here because all MCXtrema cars are spoken for. We’re guessing seven figures, considering how much the car has changed from the MC20.

Powering the MCXtrema is a Nettuno 3.0-liter V-6 turned up to 720 horsepower. While the torque peak of 538 pound-feet at 3500 rpm remains unchanged, engineers squeezed 99 more cavallini from the MC20’s engine with updated turbochargers and exhaust, plus the requisite engine programming. From the bellhousing, the engine turns a paddle-shifted six-speed sequential transaxle fitted with a limited-slip differential.

Race-Ready Interior

We didn’t see the production interior in person, but the design indicates the MC20’s interior is totally stripped. All the controls reside on two futuristic-looking consoles that flank the driver. A racing-style yoke replaces a steering wheel, and a six-point harness lashes the driver to a fixed bucket. A safety cage built to FIA standards increases chassis stiffness. Adding a passenger seat is an option.

In addition to the adjustable wing, flat underbody, and ankle-lacerating splitter, a.k.a. standard track-car kit, Maserati fitted a longitudinal spine. It splits the roof-snorkel engine intake and is said to increase in-corner stability and rear-wing efficiency. Large side scoops, a design detail not on the roadgoing MC20, feed the intercoolers and rear brakes.

All the suspension arms, of unequal-length front and rear, are billet aluminum and attach to the body and upright via ball joints. The suspension also features Ohlins four-way adjustable dampers and adjustable anti-roll bars. From the steering wheel, the driver can adjust ABS and traction control. Race tires, the kind that use metric sizing and aren’t road legal, wrap 18-inch center-lock wheels.

MCXtrema mechanics—because, let’s face it, those owners probably have mechanics on payroll—can leave the floor jacks at home because this has air jacks. On the scale of track-day flexes, air jacks is pretty high up there.

All signs indicate this big-kid toy will be a ton of fun to own and run at a track. Maserati says the MCXtrema is the first of its kind, which kind of implies there will be other low-volume specials that may or may not be street legal in our future. That’s a good thing.

Executive Editor

K.C. Colwell is Car and Driver’s executive editor, who covers new cars and technology with a keen eye for automotive nonsense and with what he considers to be great car sense, which is a humblebrag. On his first day at C/D in 2004, he was given the keys to a Porsche 911 by someone who didn’t even know if he had a driver’s license. He also is one of the drivers who set fast laps at C/D’s annual Lightning Lap track test.