By Jens Meiners
Mercedes-Benz is readying an ultra-luxury version of the new S-class that is being designed to take over at a slightly lower market position than the ill-begotten Maybach. Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche told Automotive News that the vehicle would compete with vehicles in the $200,000–$250,000 range—rather than the 400-large-and-up bracket Maybach inhabited. He added that the technological and luxury content will top that of the 2014 S-class as currently offered in the marketplace.
The highest-priced S-class to reside outside this über-luxurious range-topping S-class will the the upcoming S65 AMG—which we hear will bow in Los Angeles this November—the AMG models, however, place high emphasis on extreme power and ostentatious sportiness. Benz’s challenger to the Bentley Flying Spur and the Rolls-Royce Ghost would have to display more restraint and a more-conservative style. The upcoming high-level S-class could have a slightly longer wheelbase than even the long-wheelbase model we get stateside, but it won’t come close to the now-discontinued Maybach 62.
Daimler’s decision means that the brand will abandon the segment occupied by both the Maybach 57 and the Maybach 62, which competed head-on with the Rolls-Royce Phantom and the Bentley Mulsanne. Born out of the inability to snatch up either Bentley or Rolls-Royce brands, Maybach never came close to achieving its projected market performance, and has been regarded as an unnecessary aberration for Daimler at best.
- Car News: 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-class
- Car News: 2014 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG
- Car News: 2010 Maybach Zeppelin
At the S-class launch in May, Mercedes chief designer Gorden Wagener told us that the new S-class is positioned “a half-segment above the outgoing model,” and that its “classic lines” would make it a credible successor of the Maybach. Our own sources tell us that one of the styling elements of the upcoming, top-level S-class will be traditionally styled, high-gloss, machined wheels. The new model is expected to arrive in 2015 as a 2016 model.
Source: FULL ARTICLE at Car & Driver