The Italians have no shortage of high-market, high performance and highly desirable cars being sent across the world to be hurtled around a race track or sit amongst a collection of other vehicles - of course anything Italian is never out of place whether it be going or showing. Ferrari and Lamborghini are the most commonly known emblems of the automotive world when it comes to Italy, with a few new comers such as Pagani ensuring the bigger manufactures are kept on their toes. But under the radar, Maserati have always been producing some great cars also - although they have aimed their market toward the Grand Touring lifestyle where a cruise along the coast or through the mountain roads would be more fitting than a racetrack (but they could happily hold their own if it ever came to it!). Other than the rare MC12, Maserati have always found their feet producing gorgeous four seat coupe's or high-exclusivity saloons that share parts closely with Ferrari. The range currently has five vehicles from a luxury cross-over SUV, four door super saloons and even a convertible to give potential buyers the ultimate choice when visiting a dealership. Of course, the model we have in question today was the GranTurismo.
Unveiled in 2007, the GranTurismo featured a 4.2litre Ferrari designed V8 that produced 399bhp that as transferred to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Later years saw the engine upgraded to a 4.7litre that was also found in the Alfa Romeo 8c attached to a Ferrari 599 GTB transmission - this new addition upped the power to 434bhp. The GranTurismo S (the model featured here) featured interior technolgoy such as Bluetooth and iPod compatibility whilst the exterior received alternative side skirts, 20" 'trident' alloy wheels and non-black headlights. This combination of luxury vehicle technology and exterior design was deemed the perfect Gran Turismo by Masarati.
The GranTurismo was delivered to us covered in general road soiling with a few flicks of heavier dirt from the wheel rotation in the heavy rain a few days prior to the detail. The owner was looking to place the vehicle onto the market and chose our Protection Detail service to ensure it looked its greatest for potential viewers..
To begin the detail, the engine compartment was lightly cleansed of light dusting that had accumulated over time using a diluted All-Purpose Cleaner (APC) and agitated with a boars hair detailing brush to loosen dirt from crevasses before carefully pressure rinsing the engine compartment thoroughly. The bonnet was then lowered down to move onto the wheels where Auto Finesse Imperial wheel cleaner was sprayed liberally onto the wheel face along with the inner barrel. An APC was also sprayed into the arches and onto the tyres before a stiff bristle tyre brush scrubbed the sidewalls clean. An assortment of wheel brushes and spoke-back wheel woollies ensured that all areas were accessible, calipers were also made accessible without the need to remove the wheels. Arches were given a thorough working with a long reach brush to loosen any road soiling that had collected before the arches and wheels were rinsed. Auto Finesse Iron Out was applied to all wheel liberally and left to dwell for a few minuted whilst door and bot shut areas were cleansed. Any bonded metal particles on the wheels surface would initiate a chemical reaction where ant particles present would be transformed into a water soluble state, this reaction would cause the product to turn a deep purple/red shade where the contamination was found..
Once the Iron Out had worked at breaking down any stubborn brake dust, the wheels were thoroughly rinsed once again before the bod of the Maserati was covered in a layer of foam. An loose surface grit and dirt would be safely carried away from the paint surface to ensure the bucket wash is a safer process with reduced risk of dragging particles across the paint and causing any marring and swirling. Heavier soiling would be softened enough to pressure was away along with any remaining foam..
The Maserati was carefully washed using a synthetic deep-pile wash mitt to massage any remaining soiling away from the paintwork, Auto Finesse Lather shampoo provided enough lubrication and cleansing ability to ensure the mitt glides safely over the paint without causing marring or swirling. Once each panel was washed, the mitt was placed into a bucket containing only water to rinse out any dirt and grit that the mitt had collected; the use of a second bucket reduces the risk of grit particles being re-transferred onto the paint. The car was carefully washed panel by panel before a pressure rinse cleared the lifted soiling away. A dedicated tar removing agent was then applied to the panels in order for the solvents to soften the deposits. Some larger spots required a second or third treatment, gently wiping the product with a clean microfiber to collect and contain the tar spots. A rinse of any areas treated and the next stage of decontamination would be to remove any ferrous particles that had bonded into the vehicles paint. More commonly known as 'fallout', these particles are microscopic pieces of metal that begin to corrode over time, potentially causing permanent damage to the clear coat if not dealt with in adequate time. These particles are more easily seen on white cars where tiny specs of orange begin to appear.
Auto Finesse Iron Out (a dedicated fallout removing agent) was applied liberally to all painted surfaces of the car and left to dwell for approximately 6-8 minutes in which time any ferrous particles would be turned into a water soluble state. This creates a chemical reaction where the product would turn a deep shade of purple to indicate any particles present on the paint. This Maserati had a fairly high amount..
With the fallout remover left to dwell for the desired time, it was pressure rinsed thoroughly to carry away any contamination and remaining product residues. Extra attention was given to any areas that would collect the product in order to clear residues thoroughly. The third and final decontamination stage of the Protection Detail would be to use a surface preparation towel to remove any remaining contamination that the two chemical processes couldn't quite remove. The surface preparation towel is a clay bar alternative that features a polymer rubber coating bonded to a microfiber towel. This polymer rubber acts as an abrasive that can remove over spray and other contamination where a physical interaction is essential. After the two first stages of chemical decontamination, it is often the case that the third stage is not always essential unless the vehicle is severely contaminated - but we like to include the third step regardless to ensure the best and cleanest possible surface. A second layer of foam was blanketed over the car, this time of a higher dilution as this foam would only be used to carry away any remaining decontamination product remains without the need to re-wash the vehicle...
Another pressure rinse of the foam remains after a few minutes and the Maserati was brought indoors ready to be dried using various towels and filtered forced air to expel standing water from traps and crevasses. The paint was then prepared by hand with Auto Finesse Tripple polish to cleanse, enhance and prepare the paint in readiness for the wax layers. The Tripple was meticulously spread and worked in overlapping circular motions using a dual foam applicator, buffing away any residue once the whole car had been prepared thoroughly. The base coat was chosen to be Auto Finesse's flagship wax, Desire. With grate aesthetic properties and a durability of approximately six months, laying it as a base wax coat allows the life expectancy of the protection and finish to be preserved for as long as possible. Once the Desire had been applied thinly to all paint surfaces, it was left to cure before buffing away with a clean microfiber cloth. The wax wax then left for one hour before applying a second top coat, allowing time for any areas of wax to re-haze. During this hour, the wheels were prepared by hand using Auto Finesse Tripple to remove dust, water spots and to enhance the appearance of the wheels before a single coat of Auto Finesse Mint Rims wheels wax was applied to the face of the trident design alloys. Tyres were given a single coat of Auto Finesse Satin tyre creme prior to plastic arch liners being misted liberally with Auto Finesse Dressle. All exterior glass was then coated in Gtechniq G5 to maximize visibility during wet driving conditions before Auto Finesse Crystal ensured that smear free clear-glass finish. Plastic trim surfaces and engine compartment was dressed with Auto Finesse Revive whilst the engine intricacies were misted with Dressle.
Once an hour had passed, the second wax coat was applied to the car - this second coat being changed from Desire to Illusion show car wax. By layering Illusion over Desire allows the great aesthetic and gloss output of the top Illusion coat, whilst having the durability of the base Desire coat - the perfect compromise between maximum finish or maximum durability. Once the Illusion had cured, another clean microfiber was used to but the residue away to reveal a great pearl white beneath high levels of gloss. A final quick detailer wipe down after 30 minutes allowed (once again) any wax residues to re-haze and the quick detailer also added even more gloss, texture and protection to the paintwork, finalizing the Protection Detail of this great piece of Italian machinery.