New Mercedes-Maybach concept is off-road luxury EV

2 December 2021 - autocar

New Mercedes-Maybach concept is off-road luxury EV

Designed in partnership with Virgil Abloh, Maybach's new concept blends luxury and ruggedness

Mercedes-Benz has revealed the outlandish Project Maybach concept – an all-electric and totally bespoke creation co-designed with fashion designer Virgil Abloh, who died earlier this week.

The concept has been revealed in tribute to Abloh, who worked with Mercedes designer Gordon Wagener to create a show car which "exemplifies the possibilities of future design".

The concept has been designed from the ground up, and is said to be "unlike anything" the manufacturer has created so far. It explores a new design language for Mercedes' luxury brand, inspired by "the great outdoors".

The Project Maybach has been styled with the aim of "recontextualising a traditionally urban brand within a distinctly off-road environment", and is described as a two-seat, battery-electric off-road coupé. At six metres long, the concept is a full 745mm longer than even the extended-wheelbase version of the S-Class.

Not obviously related to any production Mercedes model, it combines traditional grand tourer proportions with chunky off-road tyres, hinting at a dual focus on go-anywhere ability and classic Maybach levels of refinement.

Its unveiling follows the debut, at Munich in September, of the new Maybach EQS SUV concept, which more closely previews the division's first electric vehicle. Mercedes has given no indication of production intent for the new machine.

Nor has it detailed its powertrain, beyond suggesting that the solar panels underneath its transparent bonnet will "increase the imagined range".

Detailing the concept in the wake of Abloh's passing, Mercedes said: "Our sincere thoughts are with Virgil’s family and teams. Now opening the world of our collaboration, and Virgil’s unique vision, to the public we want to respectfully celebrate the work of a truly unique design talent, who created endless possibilities for collaboration through his unbridled imagination and inspired all that knew his work.

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