Mercedes-Maybach has finally taken the wraps off the Maybach GLS 600 4Matic. Debuting in Guangzhou, China is a good indication of where Maybach feels the heart of this vehicles sales will be even though it will be produced in the U.S.
It extends the portfolio of the Mercedes-Maybach brand by combining the body design and technical basis of the GLS with the luxury of a top-class sedan. Its spacious interior with the highest-grade materials and extremely effective noise insulation creates a stylish and luxurious atmosphere. From their pleasantly elevated seating position, thanks to electronically operated roller sun blinds on the two rear side windows, the passengers can decide for themselves how much of their surroundings they want to see. The AIRMATIC suspension included with the fully-active E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL system effectively keeps the road bumps at bay. For the first time there is a dedicated Maybach drive program that ensures even more comfort. Access and egress are also highly convenient: when the doors are opened, the vehicle is lowered slightly, and an illuminated running board made of anodized aluminum quickly and silently emerges on the respective side of the vehicle. The V8 engine with a displacement of four liters, which can develop 550 hp and 538 lb-ft of torque, is an engine variant developed exclusively for Maybach and moves the car discreetly and powerfully. The engine is combined with the 48-volt system EQ Boost. The Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC will go on sale in the U.S. in the second half of 2020.
The rest of the extensive press release is on Page 2
The Mercedes-Benz star surmounts the hood in the classic way, while the fine, vertical chrome struts of the Maybach radiator grille create a pinstripe effect. Effective chrome highlights around the side windows, and the chrome inserts in the side sill panels, lend dignity and elegance to the profile. The 22 or 23-inch wheels were developed exclusively for this model, with the 23-inch version echoing the pinstripe theme. The tailpipe trim elements with a small cross rib emphasize the model's identity as a Mercedes-Maybach. The same applies to the brand emblem, which is positioned at various points such as on the D-pillar. As a special, Maybach-specific feature, two-tone paintwork is available in eight different, elegant color combinations.
Another eye-catching feature of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS is the electronically extending running boards. They make accessing and leaving the high seating position both convenient and safe. With surfaces of anodized aluminum laced with black rubber strips, illuminated in the dark and particularly wide in the area of the rear doors, they ensure a very special visual appeal. When in their retracted state, the running boards are concealed behind the side sill panels. If a rear door is opened, the running board on the side concerned automatically swings into position in around one second. This default setting can be changed using a special menu in the MBUX infotainment system.
The equipment features: luxury, leather and reclining seats
The standard appointments of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC are already decidedly luxurious. The two outer rear seats can be electronically converted into reclining seats. Padded areas and the dashboard are finished in fine Nappa leather, with a range of further cushions and leather interior linings available on request. An electronic panoramic sliding/tilting sunroof with an opaque roller blind is standard, as are heated and ventilated massaging seats. Available on special request, the fixed center console transforms the car into a spacious four-seater whose rear is just as suitable for working as it is for relaxing. This console is available with extending, folding tables and even a refrigerator with space for champagne bottles. Suitable silver champagne flutes for this are available from the accessories range.
A dedicated fragrance was developed for the Mercedes-Maybach GLS as part of the optional AIR BALANCE package: the white osmanthus blossom, floral and light, is rounded off by a gentle leather note and spicy tea.
From the power transfer and suspension to the headlamp technology, the technical systems of the Mercedes- Maybach GLS correspond to the most comfortable equipment level of the technically related Mercedes-Benz SUVs. Starting from this basis, added value that is typically Maybach is often a further result. For example, noise insulation in the interior has been raised to an even higher level by installing a rigid partition and a fixed parcel shelf behind the rear seats, separating the interior from the luggage compartment. A separate air conditioner for the rear seats is standard, and features additional vents and heater boosters with which temperature control is even faster. There is a dedicated Maybach drive program for the suspension and powertrain; its settings offer passengers in particular the ultimate in ride comfort.
With the standard MBUX Rear Tablet in the center console or the armrest between the rear seats, the extensive comfort and entertainment functions can also be intuitively controlled from the rear seats. The integration of digital devices used by passengers comprises all of the common standards.
At a Glance
GLS 600 4MATIC
Number of cylinders/arrangement
550 hp @ 6,000 – 6,500 rpm
Add. output with EQ Boost
Up to 21 hp
538 lb-ft @ 2,500 – 5,000 rpm
Add. torque with EQ Boost
Up to 184 lb-ft
Acceleration 0-60 mph
4.8 sec (est.)
204.9 in / 79.9 in / 72.4 in
123.4 in (3135 mm)
66.9 in / 67.8 in (1699 mm /1723 mm)
41.0 ft (12.5 m)
Successful sub-brand: Mercedes-Maybach
The Mercedes-Maybach brand stands for exclusive luxury, maximum comfort and state-of-the-art technology in automotive engineering, services and accessories. It is seen as a trailblazer in defining style and status. The maxim of its name-giver Wilhelm Maybach was to create the very best from the very best. In 2014 Mercedes-
Maybach was established as a sub-brand of Mercedes-Benz as part of a brand realignment. Since its market launch in 2015, more than 45,000 examples of the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class have been delivered worldwide. In 2018 more Mercedes-Maybach S-Class cars were sold than ever before: one in seven S-Class models sold was a Maybach.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Interview: Martin Hülder, Head of Product Management Mercedes-Maybach
"Unique combination of comfort, technology and luxury"
Martin Hülder has been Director of Product Management Mercedes-Maybach since November 2014. With a degree in automotive engineering, he has occupied senior sales and marketing positions at Daimler AG since 2007. He explains the role of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC for the brand's further development.
Mr. Hülder, in a nutshell: What does Mercedes-Maybach stand for?
Hülder: Mercedes-Maybach stands for the ultimate in comfort, top technology and therefore sheer luxury.
With the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC, the brand is being extended with the addition of a model in the SUV segment. Why?
The SUV vehicle concept has a major advantage for the luxury segment: the high seating position. In combination with the running boards, this makes access and egress outstandingly easy and convenient. Furthermore, the raised position gives the occupants a different perspective of the surroundings, and many Mercedes-Maybach customers greatly appreciate this. Incidentally, a raised seating position is nothing new in the luxury segment: the grand luxury sedans of the 1930s, such as the Maybach Zeppelin, had a similar seating height for the driver and passengers, and very similar proportions.
Are you also aiming the GLS at new customers who are less interested in classic sedan models?
Of course. We are also aiming at customers who already drive an SUV. The different entry and the different seating position are experiences they want to retain. The worldwide success of SUVs has changed the standards and habits of car buyers.
Will the success of the luxury SUV come at the expense of the classical sedan models?
We are convinced that there will tend to be a distinction in demand rather than a substitution. The differences in design and vehicle concept are simply too great for that. We therefore see the SUV as a supplementary offer. Our customers normally own several different vehicles – and if they drive an SUV, we want them to drive a Mercedes-Maybach that offers them the luxury they expect from the brand. By the way: Since its market launch in 2015, more than 45,000 examples of the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class have been delivered worldwide. In 2018 more Mercedes-Maybach S-Class cars were sold than ever before: one in seven S-Class models sold was a Maybach.
What distinguishes the Mercedes-Maybach GLS from other luxury SUVs?
The unique combination of comfort, technology and luxury. The great spaciousness, especially in the second seat row, and the use of materials are just two examples. Attention to detail also makes a difference. Think of the electronically extending running boards, which have ergonomic advantages when entering and leaving the vehicle. Their design is classically Mercedes-Maybach: fully integrated into the side sill panels, they are not visible in the retracted position. There is also the very high standard of design, which for example includes louvres in a pinstripe design and illuminated surfaces – which makes getting in a real experience.
What role does the Mercedes-Maybach GLS play within the portfolio?
Following various limited-edition small series by Mercedes-Maybach, for example the S-Class Cabriolet or the G-Class Landaulet, the GLS will supplement the Mercedes-Maybach Portfolio alongside the S-Class. We are therefore able to offer customers with different preferences a wider choice.
Are there also high-quality accessories suitable for the vehicle?
Yes, the brand experience goes well beyond the vehicle itself and the available services. The brand rounds off the lifestyle of its customers with various accessories. The licensing partner "Maybach – Icons of Luxury" produces exclusive collections accompanying the brand, and individual accessories that perfectly complement the individual models--for example travel bags, sunglasses, leatherwear and home accessories. As well as first- class quality and design, the greatest importance is attached to the functionality of the products and accessories. Fine logo emblems and embossing lend a stylish touch to the products.
However, the all-around brand experience goes even further. The exclusive international customer program "Circle of Excellence" offers unique events such as joint tours or test drives with new vehicles, opportunities for personal conversations with Mercedes-Maybach experts and brand ambassadors, and exclusive insights into our production locations.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Luxury in its purest form
The Mercedes-Maybach GLS combines the body form and superior, robust technical basis provided by the GLS, the S-Class among SUVs, with all the technical and material luxury of a top-class sedan. It stylishly yet emphatically shows its special standing among the Mercedes-Benz SUVs. The Mercedes- Maybach bears the Mercedes star in the traditional way, upright on the hood. Where the Mercedes-Benz GLS sports a large star between two horizontal louvres in the radiator grille, the Mercedes-Maybach grille has a fine, elegant line of vertical chrome pinstripes as a motif. They widen into small oar-blades at the upper edge, blending into the chrome frame bearing the lettering MAYBACH at its top center.
"The Mercedes-Maybach brand represents 'Ultimate Luxury' in its most contemporary, purest form," says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer at Daimler AG. "The brand's style is embodied in sublime beauty, supreme aesthetics and elegance. In order to define the luxury of the future, we are taking the concept of Sensual Purity to the next level and transforming ourselves from a premium manufacturer to the world's leading design brand."
The headlamps with Intelligent Light System LED technology as standard present the entire front lighting as if in jewelry showcases. Below the radiator grille, the front bumper has a wide air inlet that discreetly suggests the power of the V8 engine with a finely woven grille in high-grade chrome. On the left and right of the radiator grille, this grille has finely curved trim strips for additional embellishment, and it tapers to form an elegant, slim cross-piece emphasizing the horizontal line between the radiator grille and the registration plate bracket. Below the chrome grille the bumper has a high-gloss black paint finish and a robust, high-gloss chrome underguard indicating the vehicle's considerably refined SUV character.
The side view of the car likewise shows a refined reinterpretation of the SUV genes. The robust chrome surrounds of the side windows are subdivided by the chrome-plated B-pillar facings. This embellishing feature is a fixed part of the Mercedes-Maybach bumper signature, and externally emphasizes the length of the rear seating area. The black-painted side sill panels with chrome inserts and the strut-mounted roof rails, all typical SUV features, have also been made into embellishing features with their high-gloss finish and striking chrome highlights. On the D-pillar, an elegant Mercedes-Maybach badge underlines the high quality and great attention to detail. In the dark, a Mercedes-Maybach emblem projected onto the ground from the exterior mirrors is part of the welcome light show when opening the vehicle.
Illuminated ramp: the extending running boards ensure a dynamic entry experience
The side sill panels in particular are more than just an embellishment. They include a running board that automatically swings out for passengers to enter and leave the vehicle. Made from high-gloss aluminum with anti-slip rubber strips, the more than two-meter long running boards not only allow Mercedes-Maybach GLS drivers and passengers convenient access and egress, but also ensure an incomparable spectacle each time (see next chapter for details).
The large wheels have a diameter of 32.5 inches (825 mm), while the rims measure 22 or 23 inches in diameter. Their multi-spoke design was conceived exclusively for the Mercedes-Maybach. The design of the 23- inch wheels echoes the pinstripe motif of the radiator grille. The slim, filigree spokes blend into the rim flange as small oar-blades, like the louvres of the radiator grille. The standard 22-inch wheels are made of die-cast aluminum painted in high-gloss black with a high-sheen finish, while the 23-inch wheels are made of forged, polished aluminum. The elegant hub covers are made of high-quality metal, and bear a Mercedes star surrounded by "Maybach" lettering on each side. The large, flush-mounted wheels completely fill the wheel arches. The SUV-specific wheel arch flares are painted in the vehicle color.
Striking and elegant embellishments as design features are continued at the rear of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS. Below the rear window, to the left and right of the Mercedes star, the car shows its model designation in a Mercedes-Maybach specific script. Below this a chrome facing extends across the entire width of the car, from the outer edge of the first rear light to its counterpart on the other side. A second trim strip is fitted at the height of the loading sill, and the rear reflectors are embedded in the broad ends of the reflectors like gemstones. The lower edge of the rear bumper is painted in high-gloss black, and carries a robust, high-gloss chrome underguard that encloses the two large, rectangular tailpipe trim elements. Between them a characteristic, horizontal connecting piece provides a further, typical Mercedes-Maybach design feature.
Two-tone paint finishes are optionally available, and these underline the balanced proportions of the body. A total of eight combinations are planned, the color named first being that of the lower section: Lunar Blue/Iridium Silver; designoDiamond White/Obsidian Black; Iridium Silver/designoDiamond White; Iridium Silver/Selenite Grey; Obsidian Black/Kalahari Gold; Obsidian Black/Patagonia Red; Obsidian Black/Rubellite Red; Emerald Green/Mojave Silver. These paint finishes are rendered particularly elegant by the fluid course of the separating lines, where a fine pinstripe in the one color merges into the body of the other color along the vehicle's beltline. This fine line once again echoes the pinstripe motif.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Under the microscope: the electric running boards
Spectacular impact assured
One highlight of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS are the electronically extending running boards. They make accessing and leaving the high seating position both convenient and safe, and ensure an elegant spectacle.
The running boards painted in high-gloss black are each 6.8 feet (2.06 meters) long, and have a maximum width of 21 centimeters in the rear door areas – they are slightly narrower below the front doors. They occupy the entire length of the side sill panels. Black rubber strips are inset into their surfaces of anodized aluminum, with their contours echoing the oar-blade pattern from the radiator grille at the rear end. At the rear end of each running board there is also a chrome-look Mercedes-Maybach emblem.
When in the retracted position, the running board is almost invisibly concealed within the side sill panel. In this position it is inclined towards the center of the vehicle by around 45°, and closely follows the side sill. This means that ground clearance is not compromised. When a side door is opened, the running board on the side concerned is first moved downwards silently and smoothly by two electrically powered arms of die-cast aluminum each with four articulation joints, and then moves outwards to a horizontal position. The time taken between operating the door handle and deployment of the running board is roughly only one second. In the dark, as an addition to the ambient illumination provided by the open doors, the running board surface in the rear door area is illuminated by an LED strip in the side sill panel, including projection of the Maybach emblem.
When the car is lowered by 25 mm by AIRMATIC when the door is opened, the distance between the road surface and the vehicle's underfloor is further reduced by the running board, making access and egress even easier. The anti-slip rubber strips ensure a secure foothold. The support structure of each running board is designed for a maximum load of 441 lbs (200 kg).
If a rear door is opened, the running board on the side concerned automatically swings outwards. This default setting can be changed at any time, using a special menu in the media display. For example, it is also possible to keep the running boards permanently retracted or only activated on manual instruction. In manual mode, the running boards can also be deployed when the doors are closed. If the vehicle is moving at more than 10 mph, the running boards are automatically retracted. In the Off-Road drive program, the automatic function is always deactivated to avoid collisions with uneven surfaces. After the side door is closed, the running board retracts in around 1.5 seconds.
The kinematics and installed position of the running board ensure that on level surfaces, deployment and retraction of the running board is possible without constraint even in the low-level position of the AIRMATIC. For safety reasons the automatic function has sensors similar to those used in the anti-pinch protection systems of power windows or sliding sunroofs. The procedure is therefore automatically stopped if a collision occurs with an obstacle.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Sure-footed styling and authentic luxury
The interior of the Mercedes-Maybach uses the generous dimensions of the GLS to offer drivers and passengers comfortable seating in all four or five seats where they are able to use their time as they wish. Especially the Executive Rear can be used both as an office and as a private relaxation zone. The integration of digital devices plays an important role in every seat. High-resolution displays with brilliant graphics and touchscreens for controlling the extensive features further enhance the luxurious ambience. The Mercedes-Maybach user can perfectly integrate his or her digital environment into the car, whether as a self-driver or being chauffeured.
The character of the interior is particularly reflected in the high-grade materials, which are fitted and finished with great care and a high level of craftsmanship. The generosity and luxury of the Mercedes-Maybach are reflected for example in the Nappa Leather lined dashboard and the horizontal, chrome-look louvres of the air vents. The latter make a discreet reference to typical Mercedes-Maybach details from the exterior design, for example the pinstripe decor of the radiator grille or the horizontal connecting piece of the tailpipe trim elements.
The central element in the dashboard's design is an impressively sized screen unit embedded in an energetic, distinctively styled and fully leather-lined instrument panel. The instrument panel flows into the door panels, and the integral trim element likewise extends into the doors. At the same time, it creates the impression that the upper cockpit section is floating. The instrument cluster and media display (2 x 12.3-inch as standard) are housed behind a shared continuous glass surface to form a large free-standing screen.
When the ignition is switched on, the passengers are welcomed on all screens by an animation with Maybach lettering and an exclusive color combination. There is then a choice of different display styles such as Sport, Progressive or Discreet, which contain different numbers of displays and adjust the ambience to suit the current mood. A presentation with brilliant graphics underlines the comprehensibility of the intuitive control structure. One unique feature of MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) is its learning capability, thanks to artificial intelligence. A further display style has been designed exclusively for the Mercedes-Maybach: Maybach Classic. In this case the overall mood is darkened to deep blue. Figures, needles and bezels are presented in rose gold. The virtual glazing of the tubes is discreetly engraved.
The instrument cluster is divided into three separately selectable display zones – the two dial instruments and the central display field positioned between them. All three zones can be intuitively configured using the left touch control button in the steering wheel, allowing a very high degree of individualization. The driver can individually combine three function and displays that are important for his or her route and driving style.
The multifunction steering wheel of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS in Nappa leather, or optionally wood, is pleasant to the touch, matches the upholstery and trim and is heatable on request. The left and right spokes have control arrays with touch buttons, and Maybach lettering on the clasp. There is a touchpad in the center console as a further means of controlling many vehicle functions. The prominent, raised center console creates a robust contrast with the flee-floating appearance of the dashboard. The console carries two robust, leather- covered grab handles as a gentle reminder of the car's SUV character. It also features an elegant handrest with the exclusive Maybach emblem.
Ambience from the yachting world and rose gold as a symbolic Mercedes-Maybach color
The high-gloss or open-pore wood surfaces of the trim elements, plus the upholstery in Nappa Magma Grey/Black or Nappa Mahogany Brown/Macchiato Beige as standard ensure a very high perceived value. The same color combinations are also available with the standard designo Leather package. For this a lighter upholstery color in Crystal White/Silver Grey Pearl will become available as an alternative soon after market launch, awakening associations with interior design in luxury yacht-building and thereby underlining the high quality of the selected materials. One typical Mercedes-Maybach detail is the color rose gold for the piping on the white leather.
Another feature exhibiting a high level of craftsmanship are the multiple box pleats along the centerline of the seat upholstery. The leather is indented at the center, and the two halves on the sides are folded in to face each other and form two padded pockets opposing each other across the indentation. The two pockets are sewn together at the top and bottom. The result is a smooth, stretched seat surface that can adapt itself to the contours of the back and is taut where the seat is supposed to give way less. The box pleat motif is repeated in the cushions accompanying the Leather package, where it is cleverly emphasized: the box pleat on the cushion covers allows a view of a sewn-in contrasting strip in the rose gold color tone of the piping.
Wood trim elements with Mercedes-Maybach emblems matching the remaining decor are attached to the backrests of the front seats as standard, additionally enhancing the ambience in the rear. The screens for the MBUX Rear Seat Entertainment system can also be installed on the front seat backrests.
The in-door speakers of the Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound System are inset into the wood trim behind metal meshes. High-quality chrome work and Mercedes-Maybach badges in the interior create further highlights. A stimulating contrast is created by the traditional materials, their craftsman-like finish and the modern high-tech appointments of the Mercedes-Maybach.
Luxury also means using the latest styling methods
The LED optical fibers of the standard ambient lighting with 64 colors are inset into the door panels beneath the trim elements. They rise to the parcel shelf from the rear doors as "flowing lines," and elegantly envelop the seats. In the middle of the rear seat unit they then continue to the sides of the comfort center armrest of the five-seater, or the rear center console of the four-seater variant. They also surround the MBUX Rear Tablet, which allows the comfort features for the rear to be operated from there. Exclusively, and for the first time in the Mercedes-Maybach GLS, the ambient lighting also includes optical fibers in the roof liner, on the left and right sides of the panoramic sliding/tilting roof, which especially emphasizes the effect of the roof aperture at night.
The large panoramic sliding/tilting roof allows a great deal of light into the interior, as well as fresh air when required. Its electrically operated roller blind is completely opaque and allows privacy for the rear passengers, just like the electrically operated blinds on the rear side windows. Passengers will also find temperature- controlled cup holders in the extended center console.
In the four-seater variant, the continuous center console has a lockable closure whose wood decor echoes the waterfall decor of the trunk division. Behind it is a stowage compartment, or if preferred, a large, refrigerated compartment. This can accommodate three 0.75-litre champagne bottles, for example. Below the lockable closure there is a heatable armrest in Nappa leather. In front of it is the MBUX Rear Tablet with a 7-inch screen diagonal for the control of all comfort features. The MBUX Rear Tablet can be removed from its charger/holder for convenience of use. The holder is located in the folding lid of the illuminated stowage compartment, which is also equipped with a 115V socket. In front of it there is space for an optional Wireless Mobile Interface, which can be optionally equipped with a Bluetooth receiver for discreet conversations.
Between the rear seat footwells, the continuous center console has a wood trim element with a sliding cover which reveals temperature-controlled cup holders and a stowage compartment. Optionally this space can also be used to accommodate the silver champagne flutes available as Mercedes-Maybach Genuine Accessories, where a fixed space is provided in the lid of the refrigerator compartment.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Under the microscope: designo decor with "flowing lines" and "light lines"
High-tech meets craftsmanship
The pinstripe motif is a striking Mercedes-Maybach feature that can be found in numerous places, such as the radiator grille, running boards, wheel design or the air conditioning vents. This pattern has also inspired two trim designs. As a traditional material, wood is processed and finished to the usual standard of craftsmanship for these parts. However, presenting the guiding pinstripe theme is only possible using high-tech processes.
With the available designo high-gloss black flowing lines piano lacquer trim, extremely fine, light "flowing lines" reminiscent of marquetry pass across the trim element, taking on its form and emphasizing its contours. They describe an elegant flourish and draw apart or come together to heighten the harmonious overall effect. These lines are created by skilled craftsmanship and precise digital technology.
The carefully selected wood veneer has been aged for at least ten years, and a great deal of craftsmanship goes into cutting, reinforcing and stabilizing it before it is sanded particularly thinly to take shape. It is then mounted on a carrier which gives it shape, and dyed black. The actual application of the "flowing lines" now follows. A specially developed CNC milling cutter is used to define the fine lines in the layer of veneer, only a few tenths of a millimeter wide. These extremely precisely milled striations are also only just under one millimeter in depth. In the process the veneer layer is completely cut through, exposing the light carrier material. The difficulty of this operation is that the veneer can tear. To prevent this, the direction of milling must for example be adapted to the course of the wood fibers.
After milling, all of the milling dust must be removed from the components, right down into the fine striations. Microscopic checks are performed to ensure that the lines are cleanly milled and that all residue has been removed. The tiniest of dirt particles would make the part unusable. Only if it gets this far unblemished does it receive a full coating by machine.
The fine line pattern for the optional designo high-gloss brown light lines lime wood trim is produced in an altogether different way. In the first stage of the process, several layers of wood veneer are glued together to form a block. Every seventh layer is made of polycarbonate rather than wood. 0.6 mm fine slices are cut from the resulting layer-glued block perpendicular to the surface of the veneers and then sanded smooth. They form the veneer of the trim elements and are stained in a dark shade. The stain is then wiped away again so that the polycarbonate strips stand out as "light lines." In contrast to the "flowing lines" of the piano lacquer and magnolia trim, these lines run dead straight and parallel. When cutting and applying the veneers onto the molded parts, meticulous attention must therefore be paid to their alignment. These veneers are then fully coated with a clear coat.
The finish, involving sanding and polishing, is then the same for both trim variants. Most of the work is done by hand, accompanied by frequent, careful checks. It takes a great deal of experience, finesse and a good eye to achieve an elegant surface. The walnut veneer receives a deep shine to which the "light lines" lend a unique structure. In the finely chiseled line pattern of the "flowing lines," it seems as though the light lines are inserted into the dark, high-gloss black surface of the piano lacquer or the magnolia veneer.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Space for the good life
The spatial concept of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS starts with the seated position high above the road surface, which puts the SUV concept into the luxury segment. Compared with the S-Class, the driver sits more than 9.8 inches (25 cm) higher, and the rear passengers almost 11 inches (28 cm) higher. This makes it particularly easy for occupants to get in through the wide door openings using the electric running boards. The interior of the Mercedes-Maybach uses the generous dimensions of the GLS to offer drivers and passengers comfortable and spacious seating. The rear compartment especially, with seats 4.7 inches (120 mm) further back than they are in the Mercedes-Benz GLS, serves as both an office and a private relaxation zone. The outer rear seats with their foot rests and the exceptionally wide backrest that can be inclined backwards up to 43.5° are ideal for deep relaxation on long journeys or even a rejuvenating power nap.
The long wheelbase length of 123.4" (3135 mm) provides generous spaciousness in the interior. This results in the vast legroom of 43.4" (1103 mm), in which the calf supports for both outer rear seats can be extended. They are standard for both seating configurations – the five-seater or the four-seater. If the front passenger seat is moved into the chauffeur position, there is up to 4.4 feet (1.34 m) of legroom behind it.
Moving the front passenger seat into the chauffeur position not only extends the legroom behind, it also inclines the backrest towards the seat cushion, taking account of the statutory requirements for the driver's field of vision, which may vary from market to market. Combined with the slightly higher sitting position in the rear seats compared with the front seats, this results in an exceptionally generous feeling of spaciousness with good forward visibility.
The rear seats are optimized to provide an outstanding level of seating comfort, particularly in the two outer seats. Compared with the position of the second seat row in the Mercedes-Benz GLS, the seats are each moved 1.2" (30 mm) inward and 4.7" (120 mm) rearward. This means there is 0.63" (16 mm) more elbow room between the seat occupant and the door paneling in the Mercedes-Maybach. The headroom in the rear seats is 40.2" (1020 mm) when they are in the normal position with the backrests inclined 27° rearward.
Behind the rear seats, the fixed load compartment partition with an exquisitely designed parcel shelf separates the interior from the luggage compartment. This solution offers advantages in terms of body rigidity, low noise levels and high climate comfort. The luggage compartment capacity is 18.5 cu-ft (525 liters). The loading space between the wheel arches is 41.7" (1058 mm) wide - enough room for four large golf bags. The through-loading height of the luggage compartment below the parcel shelf is 15.7" (398 mm), making it 0.87" (22 mm) higher than in an S-Class.
The front seats provide the driver and front passenger with the same generous amount of space that is available in the Mercedes-Benz GLS. Even exceptionally tall people can find a relaxed and comfortable seated position thanks to the wide adjustment ranges of the seats. There is 40.4" (1025 mm) of headroom up to the standard-fit panoramic tilting/sliding sunroof.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Luxury you never stop feeling
Seating comfort in all seats has always been a stand-out feature of all Mercedes-Maybach vehicles. In the new Mercedes-Maybach GLS, all seats are electrically adjustable, heated, ventilated and equipped with massage functions as standard.
Multicontour seats, which can adapt to drivers and front passengers of any stature, are fitted as standard in the front. The seat cushion length--the part of the seat that supports the thighs--is electrically adjustable, as are the position and angle of the seat cushion and backrest. The backrests feature four-way adjustable lumbar support. Even the head restraints and the steering column are electrically adjustable. A memory function allows the settings to be stored together with those for the electric exterior mirrors.
But even the ideal seat position can be too one-sided in the long run, which is why the ENERGIZING seat kinetics function is included as standard for the driver and front passenger. The system supports advantageous changes in the seating posture by means of minute movements of the seat cushion and backrest when on a journey. This encourages the driver and front passenger to "sit actively." Their seats also feature inflatable active cushions in the seat backrest bolsters for additional lateral support when cornering. In conjunction with the Driver Assistance package (standard), this feature is also used by PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side.
There is also a massage system included as standard for the rear Executive seats and the two front seats: ten pressure points in each backrest, which can be combined with heating elements for a 'hot-stone massage,' can give the seat occupant's back an effective massage. Each of the front seat cushions also includes four additional pressure points for massaging the seat occupants.
Ventilated seats for enhanced well-being
The front and rear seats in the Mercedes-Maybach are ventilated, including ventilation and heating of the seat cushions and backrests. Once activated, the ventilation operates in 'reverse' mode initially – in other words, air is drawn away from the passenger's body for around one minute at first. Cooled air is then directed at the passenger's body during continuous operation. In this way, the unpleasant effect of excessive heat transfer away from the body can be avoided. In cold temperatures, the fast-acting seat heating provides thermal comfort with almost no delay. If the GLS is equipped with Remote Start, seat heating and seat ventilation can also be activated before getting into the vehicle using the Mercedes me App on a smartphone.
The Executive area in the rear is available in a choice of two different designs - with two or three seats. In both versions, the two outer seats are Executive seats with calf supports and backrests that recline a long way back. The multicontour upholstery offers good lateral support through the backrest and high comfort on long journeys and when driving on rough terrain.
The height and angle of the comfort head restraints on the Executive seats are electrically adjustable. These head restraints feature additional cushions, which have already become a popular feature among Mercedes- Maybach S-Class customers. They are exceptionally comfortable, keep vibrations away from the passenger's leaned head and also meet the latest Euro NCAP requirements. With the standard designo Leather package, customers also get leather cushions for the thigh supports on the Executive seats and additional accompanying cushions with matching leather trim. These individually positioned cushions can make the sitting position even more comfortable.
The comprehensive adjustment options for the rear seats make it sensible to have a memory function here, too, allowing several favorite settings to be stored and recalled. Another practical feature is the 'tidy up' button: a single push of the button is all it takes to return the rear seats and, if it has been moved into the chauffeur position, the front passenger seat to their original positions.
The familiar and often copied Mercedes-Benz control panels are fitted in the front and rear doors to operate the many convenience features and adjustment options. It is even possible to activate the central locking from the rear doors. All of the rear seats' comfort functions can be controlled using the MBUX Command Center Rear as an alternative to using the control panels in the doors.
There are also command menus that can be called up in MBUX, the MBUX Rear Tablet and the MBUX Rear Seat Entertainment System. The MBUX Rear Tablet is housed in the extended center console in the four-seater variant, while it is located in the fold-out luxury center armrest with chrome trim element in the five-seater version. It also has space for an illuminated stowage compartment with two USB ports.
The removable tablet further enhances ease of operation when the rear passenger has adopted a particularly comfortable, reclined position with the separate cushions. If the occupant then also wants to use the seat's ventilation or massage function, listen to music or adjust the ambient lighting, they do not need to sit up again to select the setting.
Relax in comfort even more with ENERGIZING Comfort programs
The ventilated seats and the massage functions are integrated into the ENERGIZING package's comfort control. ENERGIZING Comfort networks various comfort systems in the vehicle and uses lighting and musical moods plus a number of massages for a wide range of feel-good programs. The ENERGIZING COACH, which recommends these programs based on the situation, can offer programs such as Freshness and Vitality or, in conjunction with the Warmth and Comfort package, also Warmth, Joy and Comfort programs. If a compatible wearable or a smartwatch is worn, personal values such as stress level or quality of sleep optimize the accuracy of the recommendation.
The programs all run for ten minutes. They are visualized on the media display with color graphics, and backed by suitable music. Individual functions of the programs can be deactivated. ENERGIZING Comfort also incorporates ambient lighting, which is harmoniously tailored to each of the individual screen designs. The light stages the interior like a work of art by composing color worlds from different colors.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Pampering in total peace and quiet
In addition to sumptuous spaciousness and exquisitely comfortable seats, the interior of the Mercedes- Maybach GLS offers the high standard of comfort appointments one would expect in the luxury class. The effective insulation of the interior to prevent disturbing noise and vibration means that these systems have an additional requirement to fulfill: they need to perform their tasks extremely quietly. This makes it easier for the driver and Executive passengers to converse, as does the intercom (two- way in-car communication) included as part of the standard Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound System.
The standard-fit THERMOTRONIC is likewise designed so as not to disturb the peace in the Mercedes-Maybach GLS. Accordingly the fan motor rests on rubber bearings so that no vibrations are transferred to the housing that might lead to a noise in the interior. A coating on the air ducts additionally dampens airflow noises. The air is then conducted to the vents after thorough filtering and temperature control according to the weather and the occupants' wishes.
The standard-fit Executive Climate System (ECS) has a separate air conditioner for the rear and controls the temperature and the air quantity on the left and right and in both seat rows separately. Numerous vents ensure effective and draught-free air supply to exactly where it is needed. Those in the footwell at the front and rear operate independently from those in the B-pillars, for example. Above the rear doors there are additional, fixed outlet openings which are used by the rear air conditioner and make the ventilation particularly pleasant and indirect. Two additional electric heating elements in the rear footwell provide a pleasant temperature in double- quick time, even when it's cold outside.
Discreet and comfortable: the air conditioning system thinks for itself
The ECS system is configured so that the passenger adjusts the system for their seat once, and the automatic system then ensures the desired, pleasant interior climate every time. This is why several sensors measure the inside and outside temperatures, the angle of the sun and even the air humidity at the windscreen, so as to prevent misted-up windows before they can cause an issue.
The control unit also detects poor air quality outside the vehicle, or receives a warning from the navigation system if the vehicle is approaching a tunnel. In both cases, the system automatically switches to air recirculation mode, and the side windows and sliding sunroof are closed. Like a good butler, the control system also remembers the personal preferences of up to seven different, regular users and one guest.
A separate control panel in the rear and the menus in the MBUX Rear Tablet or MBUX Rear Seat Entertainment System allow control of the Executive Climate System from the rear seats, too. Mercedes me connect can be used in conjunction with Remote Start to pre-heat or pre-cool the vehicle by remote control before setting off.
Warmth and Comfort package, the heated multifunction steering wheel and AIR BALANCE (all standard) allow individual adjustment of the ECS system. The Warmth and Comfort package includes heatable areas in the armrests and door center panels on all four doors and the armrest in the fixed center console.
Even better air quality and enhanced wellness thanks to the AIR BALANCE package
Even more wellness is assured by the AIR BALANCE package. This has two particularly clever features. One is active fragrance of the interior: activated, deactivated and variably controlled via a separate menu in the infotainment system, a fragrance generator perfumes the air entering the interior with a pleasant fragrance from a glass flask. The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS has its own signature fragrance: the white osmanthus blossom, floral and light, is rounded off by a gentle leather note and spicy tea.
Fragrance in the interior contributes greatly to the luxurious ambience but is also a matter of individual taste. Familiar AIR BALANCE fragrances from the Mercedes-Benz range are therefore also available as alternatives to the exclusive Maybach fragrance. The fragrance system's technology ensures that the fragrance also actually evaporates after system deactivation and air exchange. No perfume droplets stick to clothing or the occupants.
Another function of the AIR BALANCE Package is air ionization by a high-voltage ionizer in the air duct. The ionizer generates negative ions which are attracted by the mainly positively charged airborne particles. With the magnetic attraction, they form heavier agglomerations and fall to the floor. In this way, certain viruses, bacteria and spores whose deactivation measurably benefits asthmatics and allergy sufferers are precipitated from the breathable air. Ionization freshens the air and keeps the occupants feeling fit for longer.
Use the time: equipment for work and entertainment
The Mercedes-Maybach GLS connectivity allows passengers to take their own digital environment with them into the car and integrate it perfectly there. At least four USB ports and WLAN/Bluetooth enable the occupants to incorporate and power their devices. The MBUX infotainment system supports the popular formats and internet protocols, and can manage up to eight different user profiles. Folding tables can be ordered for the large compartment in the fixed rear center console, turning the rear area into a comfortable mobile office.
THE MBUX Rear Seat Entertainment System is equipped as standard for entertaining the rear passengers. It includes two 11.6-inch touchscreens on which films or music can be played or, at a later point, the integrated web browser can be used. Each screen displays the content selected by the individual user. Special Mercedes-Benz Bluetooth headphones are also standard-equipped for a high-quality sound. In addition to the options offered by the MBUX infotainment system, users can also play their own media from a mobile phone, tablet or laptop. The MBUX Rear Seat Entertainment System can also be controlled via the standard-fit MBUX Rear Tablet.
The low noise level inside the Mercedes-Maybach GLS creates the ideal conditions for the Burmester® High-End 3D Surround Sound system, which is designed to meet the highest individual requirements. Some 27 high- performance speakers and 24 separate amplifier channels provide an overall output of 1590 watts. It offers superb sound quality precisely tuned to the interior. Both systems have an integrated two-way ICC (In-Car Communication) system to make it easier for occupants in the front and rear seats to converse.
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Only floating is better
A Mercedes-Maybach always aspires to offer the best suspension comfort in its class. The Mercedes- Maybach features the AIRMATIC air suspension with Adaptive Damping System Plus (ADS+) in addition to the E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL based on the 48 V on-board electrical system, an innovation in suspension technology that meets the highest standards. A special Maybach drive program tuned for maximum ride comfort has also been developed.
The front wheel suspension is a double wishbone suspension with the upper wishbone in a high position, which benefits spring travel when driving off-road. All transverse control arms and the steering knuckles are weight- optimized forged aluminum components. Their light weight and rigidity ensure low unsprung masses and create good conditions for uncoupling wheel suspension vibrations and oscillations from the vehicle body. The design of the front axle ensures separate introduction of longitudinal and lateral forces, which benefits both the vehicle dynamics and suspension comfort.
Even the links of the four-link rear suspension are largely made of aluminum and are optimized based on the same principles as the front axle parts in terms of weight, handling dynamics and vibration comfort. Wheel control is by a cast aluminum lower wishbone and a forged aluminum upper strut rod, as well as an upper camber strut of sheet steel.
The AIRMATIC air suspension responds particularly sensitively. It combines air suspension bellows with adaptive ADS+ dampers whose characteristics can be fully automatically varied at each individual wheel, in both the compression and rebound stages. While driving, a sophisticated sensor system and algorithms set the dampers according to the quality of the road to ensure that, for example, driving over a bump with just one wheel is not transmitted to the entire axle and the interior. At the front axle the springs and dampers are housed in one suspension strut, but they are separate at the rear axle.
The driver personally and the selected drive programs can change the suspension set-up. However, the AIRMATIC control unit also uses sophisticated sensors and algorithms to analyze the driving situation and make automatic adjustments. This includes the level control, which is part of AIRMATIC. It keeps the ground clearance constant irrespective of the vehicle load but also makes changes. By way of example, the vehicle body is lowered by 15 mm at high speeds to reduce the aerodynamic drag and increase driving stability. At speeds below approximately 19 mph, lowering of the car by 25 mm can be activated to make it easier for occupants to get in and out.
Superlative ride comfort with E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL
Even better ride comfort and agility, plus completely new functions such as recovery mode, are provided by the newly developed E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL suspension, which is combined with the AIRMATIC air suspension. This is the only system on the market that can individually control spring and damping forces at each wheel, suppressing rolling, pitching and lifting movements. Together with ROAD SURFACE SCAN and the curve inclination function CURVE, E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL makes an exceptional level of comfort possible, and supports the claim of Mercedes-Benz to build the world's most intelligent SUV suspension.
E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL operates with 48 volts. The system is based on the AIRMATIC all-air suspension system and offers the same all-round self-levelling. Furthermore, the electrically driven hydraulic pump generates dynamic forces that overlay the air suspension forces and actively support and dampen the vehicle body, for example during linear and lateral acceleration or when driving on uneven roads. The body no longer squats or pitches during braking and acceleration, and on poor road surfaces the system is even able to recuperate energy, roughly halving the energy requirement compared with the preceding system in the S-Class.
Additional features to enhance occupant comfort:
- In CURVE drive mode, the Mercedes-Maybach GLS actively leans into bends by up to 3° in three stages, like a motorcycle. This reduces the lateral forces acting on the occupants. Cornering is therefore made much more pleasant, especially for the front and rear passengers.
- The ROAD SURFACE SCAN function comprises a stereo multi-purpose camera that continually records the road surface ahead of the vehicle. The suspension struts are then activated so as to substantially reduce the body movements when driving over surface undulations, as the suspension responds even before the uneven stretch is reached. This enhances the comfort in particular away from paved roads.
- The recovery function is included as part of the Off-Road drive program and helps to free the vehicle more easily if it gets stuck in sand, for example. If possible the suspension level is automatically raised and lowered several times, which alternately increases or reduces the ground pressure of the tires and therefore improves traction. The car rocks itself free.
Exclusive to the Mercedes-Maybach: the Maybach DYNAMIC SELECT drive program
DYNAMIC SELECT offers a Maybach drive program developed specifically for the Maybach. It is fully focused on ride comfort for the rear passengers, while the Comfort drive program offers balanced ride comfort for the front and rear passengers.
The Maybach program ensures that the body movements are at their lowest precisely at the Executive seats. There is therefore a vibration node here to minimize the amplitudes. Other program settings focus on the engine and transmission:
- Very flat accelerator curve for chauffeur mode
- Transmission tuning with fewer gearshifts for smooth driving
- Starting off in second gear
- No stop/start function
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS
Sublime power in velvet gloves
The new Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC is driven exclusively by the powerful and discreet M 177 a new, electrified variant of the V8 gasoline engine with a displacement of 3,982 cc, 48-volt on-board electrical system and integrated starter-alternator (ISG). ISG is responsible for hybrid functions such as EQ Boost or energy recovery, while allowing fuel savings that were previously reserved for high-voltage hybrid technology. The development focused on the long-term improvement of the consumption and emissions figures. At the same time, the customers' power expectations need to be met. As a result, the engine produces an output of 550 hp and 538 lb-ft of torque. An additional 184 lb-ft of torque and up to 21 hp output are available temporarily via EQ Boost. Power is transmitted by the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission. The wide spread of ratios for gears one to nine ensures a significant reduction in the engine speed and is a decisive factor behind the high levels of drive and ride comfort. Likewise standard is the transfer case with variable transfer of the drive torque from 0-100 percent (Torque on Demand) between the axles.
The new biturbo is configured for high drive comfort and, at the same time, high efficiency and effective emissions reduction. Stand-out features of the V8 in this engine family include the cylinder shut-off in the part- load range. The variable valve control system CAMTRONIC shuts off four cylinders at once. This reduces the gas exchange losses while improving the overall efficiency of the remaining four cylinders in combustion mode by shifting the operating point towards higher loads.
In the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC, the cylinder shut-off is active in the DYNAMIC SELECT Comfort drive program in the 800 – 3,250 rpm speed range. Above that engine speed or when the driver strongly presses the accelerator pedal, cylinders 2, 3, 5 and 8 are switched on within milliseconds. The transition between the two operating modes is seamless and with no loss of comfort for the occupants. A pendulum-type absorber reduces both fourth-order vibrations in eight-cylinder mode as well as second-order vibrations in four- cylinder mode.
The two cylinder heads have particularly high thermal resistance and are thermally conductive thanks to a zirconium alloy. Their intake and exhaust ducts form the tumble, the movement of the air mass during cylinder charging, for particularly efficient and low-emission mixture formation and combustion. A third-generation spray-guided direct petrol injection system with piezo injectors also ensures multiple injections as needed with 100 to 200 bar. The two instantly responding twin-scroll turbochargers are positioned in the "hot inside V" between the cylinder banks to save space. Their boost pressure is adapted to the demand in real time by a control valve. These measures are intertwined and improve the thermal efficiency and the emissions level.
To keep the mechanical losses low, the cylinder surfaces feature NANOSLIDE® coating. Another measure implemen
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