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Mercedes-Maybach S-Class

LOOK WHO'S 'BACH (some text hidden)

By Jonathan Crouch

Mercedes has improved its top Maybach S-Class model - the brand's Rolls Royce alternative. Jonathan Crouch reports.

Ten Second Reviewword count: 47

The Mercedes-Maybach S-Class is the ultimate expression of Mercedes saloon luxury. Customers get loads of space in the back, some of the greatest rear seats ever to grace a passenger car, a whisper quiet ride and a potent V12 twin-turbo powerplant. VIPs should form an orderly queue.

Backgroundword count: 115

Mercedes-Maybach is the Stuttgart company's top luxury brand. Once upon a time, 'Maybach' was a stand-alone marque, but boardroom customers didn't take to the Maybach 57 and 62 models produced just after the turn of the century, so the badge now only survives as a top-spec identifier for the S-Class saloon range. Various Mercedes-Maybach vaiants are offered in Europe but here, we only get the rear-driven S650 V12 version. It's now been significantly updated. Don't for one moment think that Mercedes has the equivalent of a Ford Ghia badge here. The Maybach S-Class isn't just a normal long-wheelbase S-Class that's had an enthusiastic run at the options list. This one is something very special indeed.

Driving Experienceword count: 138

Power comes courtesy of the most appropriate engine on offer, namely the brand's 630hp petrol V12 with a thumping 1,000Nm of torque. This 6.0-litre unit will waft you to 62mph in 4.7s and must be artificially restrained at 155mph. The full air suspension you'd expect from a car in this class is of course a standard feature, adapting its demeanour to the 'Comfort', 'Sport', 'Sport+' and 'Individual' settings provided by the 'DYNAMIC SELECT' driving modes system. These also tweak steering feel. With the auto gearbox effortlessly slurring between the ratios and 'DYNAMIC SELECT' set to 'Comfort', this Mercedes eases over dips and bumps with an impressively unflustered gait, particularly at higher speeds. Around town you might notice the occasional pothole and speed hump that would have passed without comment in a rival BMW 7 Series or Lexus LS.

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Category: Luxury Saloons and Estates

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