- the 2021 mercedes-maybach s580, the highest-end member of the s-class family, made its debut today.
- it's powered by mercedes's turbocharged 4.0-liter v-8 making 496 horsepower and supplemented by a 48-volt hybrid system.
- the mercedes-maybach s580 is expected out in the summer of 2021, priced starting in the $200,000 range.
maybach is a state of mind. it’s a belief that a regular mercedes-benz s-class just doesn't adequately tell the world you're successful, with the conviction that your time is so valuable you can't afford the distraction of driving yourself. it emerges from a root-level faith that what you do to guide the universe is more important than what others do just to keep it well oiled. you matter. and now mercedes has shown its latest maybach sedan, instantly relegating all the previous maybachs to has-been status.
this, formally, is the 2021 mercedes-maybach s580 4matic sedan. and formal is the only way it will come.
the new maybach made its debut in person, at an unveiling event in southern california at which no drives were allowed. it sat there behind a home overlooking malibu as if it might hover up on a cloud of cash and join the lax landing pattern. it's not a startling thing to behold, but it looks like money.
just as a reminder, maybach is no longer a stand-alone brand with its own products. that 15-year experiment died back in december 2012 when the last pure maybach was produced. now it is mercedes-maybach, which exists as an ultraluxury parallel to the performance oriented mercedes-amg brand. mercedes-benz is, meanwhile, the mainstream brand that ranges from the almost populist a-class all the way up to cars like the sybaritic sl roadster and all those fedex vans.
the basic formula for creating a maybach s-class doesn't differ forward of the b-pillar it shares with the "mere" s-class sedan, while what's behind the b-pillar has been stretched. the wheelbase has been extended 9.1 inches from the standard s-class, from 124.6 inches to 133.7 inches, while overall length rises from 206.9 to 215.3 inches (up 8.4 inches). that means the rear quarters, rear doors, and roof are all maybach specific. the rear decklid is reportedly shared with the regular s-class.
in the previous maybach, the stretch in the floorpan was accomplished by adding a supplemental stamped plug to the regular s-class floor. so far, no one at mercedes has responded to car and driver about how it's done this time. whatever the method, the maybach models will be constructed on the same assembly line in sindelfingen, germany.
the basic suspension design and mechanical substance of the maybach is the same as other members of the w223-generation s-class vehicles. that’s the generation that went into production and on sale this year.
the "base" mercedes-maybach is the s580 with 4matic all-wheel drive. the engine is mercedes's twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter v-8 making 496 horsepower and supplemented by a 48-volt hybrid system providing up to an additional 21 horsepower of oomph. mercedes claims that the additional battery support smooths out the torque delivery to provide luxury-liner linear acceleration. and it's likely the shifts in the nine-speed automatic transmission will only be detected by the most sensitive of plutocratic hind ends.
a version powered by the mercedes's twin-turbo v-12 is inevitable. and it's likely to be the first time that the v-12 will be lashed to the all-wheel-drive system.
as far as the interior goes, this thing has everything. plus everything else and some more beyond that. the front seats—for the chauffeur and the spare chauffeur—is pretty much familiar s-class. it's gorgeous, high-tech, yet somehow still straightforward. what matters in this vehicle is the passenger compartment in back.
under a leather-lined ceiling, the two potentates in back sit on thrones that adjust from bolt upright to laid back for massage. between the two seats is an optional champagne cooler with sterling silver champagne flutes. there are tabletops to work on, big screens on which to enjoy many types of media, controls to manipulate everything, and lots of details to make one feel as if they got their money's worth.
there’s a certain ostentatiousness to the maybach that must be appreciated as a strategic decision. from the available two-tone paint to the chrome spear down the hood and the massive front grille, the point isn't just to announce prosperity but societal dominance. this isn't a car built to blend in.
it will go on sale next year with a price likely to start up near or beyond $200,000. and to carry your luggage, you’ll need one of the new mercedes-maybach gls suvs to support your entourage.