Upon testing the Maserati MC20 for his column on the Sunday Times, Jeremy Clarkson found himself stuck in a car park as he struggled to get to grips with the technology of the car. He and his partner Lisa Hogan sat in the car after parking it, unable to find a way out.
“We were still in the pub car park because neither of us could find anything that even remotely resembled a door handle.”
The Grand Tour presenter than wrote for Lisa, who added: “We’d have been screwed if we’d crashed into a lake.”
Even after they’d found how to open the door and get out of the car, Jeremy quickly had to jump back in as the car began to roll without it being put into ‘park’ or the handbrake being applied. This caused another issue as the presenter struggled to find how to do this.
“After an hour of swearing and wondering out loud whether it would have been easier to stay at home and make a soufflé out of ant hearts, I called a colleague, who said that to engage ‘park’ and turn out the lights. I had to stop the engine twice.
“So I pushed the button to turn the motor off, then pushed it again. Which caused it to start.
“I then called the colleague again, who said that when I pushed the button the second time my foot had to be off the brake pedal. And he was right, which meant that we just caught last orders.”
The car posed an interesting question to the Clarkson’s Farm presenter, who wondered why Maserati, a company owned by Ferrari, wanted to create another mid-engined supercar worth £200,000.
“So who would look at all the options and say, ‘You know what? I think I’d prefer a Maserati’?” Jeremy asked.
But surprisingly, Jeremy is a fan of the car:
“Well, I would. Ferraris these days are too far up their own bottoms to be taken seriously, and while I like the McLaren alternatives — there are 5,000 of them and they’re all the same — they somehow don’t have the same kudos. Lamborghini does, but Maserati does even more. It’s a name to savour. It’s why I went to the pub. Because I wanted to say, ‘Shall we take the Maserati?
He continues to describe the car as “quieter and more civilised than any of its rivals” and “less intimidating”.
He concludes the review with a summary paragraph:
“It looks like a supercar but it’s more of a plain-Jane GT car really. A comfortable and quiet place to sit as the miles slip away. And it’s a lovely thing to look at. But the main reason I’d choose this over any other car of its type is simple. I liked it.”