End of the line for Maybach?

End of the line for Maybach?

End of the line for Maybach?

Enlarge Photo
With no new models in the pipeline and a paltry 146 units sold in all of 2007, Mercedes’ ultra-luxury Maybach line could be facing the cutting block. Considering rival brands Rolls-Royce and Bentley are experiencing record sales and growth, walking away from Maybach may seem like a bad idea, but according to Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche there are some very good reasons to bail out now before it gets worse.

Speaking with TheCarConnection, Zetsche said Maybach’s sales tally of 146 units is only 10% of original projected sales figures. He went on to reveal that he has approved no plans to add any new models or replace existing ones. Maybach’s most recent model is the Landaulet (pictured), a cabrio version of the 62 limo, but Zetsche explains the new car won’t have much of an effect on sales.

Despite the gloom, there is some support for Maybach from within Daimler. Zetsche admits the brand won’t return a positive return on investment but adds that “it doesn’t matter” because it has proven that it can compete with Rolls-Royce and Bentley. The other positive is that development costs for Maybach were relatively low because both the 57 and 62 models are largely based on the last-generation Mercedes S-Class. When asked if Maybach will launch a new model, Zetsche said that the decision has not been made but that it will come in the next two years.

Maybach 62 Landaulet
Follow Us

Comments (8)
  1. I could go either way with this issue, if Mercedes is going to design new Maybachs like they did with the new GLK, ML, GL and C-Class, then let it die peacefully in glory and design and technological ingenuity. Or if Mercedes is willing to invest in its expansion with more affordable models like Bentley and soon-to-follow Rolls-Royce, then let the brand stay. Its always hard to bring back old luxury marques from the grave and expect them to miraculously become successfull, this takes and time and alot of investment.

  2. Maybach is something that should never have been born again. Kill this monstrosity now.

    While you're at it so some inhouse sweeping and kill the CLS, the GLK (among a host of other current MB offerings). Also, fire the entire S class design team and anyone who had anything to do with putting gear levers in the steering column. The *why have one model when 3 will do* mentality at MB has to go.

  3. I say kill off Maybach, it simply doesn't have the brand prestige of RR and Bentley. Say "i drive a RR or Bentley", and everyone will be "wow", say "i drive a maybach" and people will be like "what's that?"

    Even if they decide to keep the brand, at least give it distinctive styling and interior design/switchgear. Do what BMW did with RR, Maybach simply looks like a blinged up version of S-class, and with S-class so good already, why go with Maybach?

  4. Maybach has proven it can compete with Rolls & Bentley, by what measurement? Rolls & Bentley can't build them fast enough and rich guys are waiting at the door to take delivery. When the press bothers to road test a Maybach they point out where it fails compared to the competition and even where if fails in comparison to the S-Class MB. Kill it get it over with.

  5. Wow, I didn't expect the public opinion of Maybach to be so bad.
    MB never meant to make money with the Maybach, it's only a thing of prestige and although it doesn't seem to have much of that over in the US, here in Germany the Maybach is still one step above RR & Bentley, being the ultimate car to be driven in (you wouldn't wanna drive it yourself of course).

  6. Why the Maybach failed is that it simply has no brand recognition; whereas Rolls and Bently already have the upper segment carved out for them. Nice try MB, but no cigar.

  7. maybe they need to have patience and give it time...

    Look at Lexus, noone would give it the time of dday when it was first released, and that was beside the fact that the original LS was just asa good as the best BMW and MB could deliver. the fact that it looked like an enlarged Toyota Cressida / Crown was its only sticking point. Now look at the marque, they are going great guns and most people woudl love to own a Lexus.
    I think they need to take time with Maybach and the next version of the car should be something from left field so as to distance it from MB. Although a cheaper model like the original Lexus ES which was effectively a slightly stretched but better equiped Campry would be able to pull in sales and generate the funds to ensure the luxury versions stay and be able to create brand recognition for the Marque. Personally i think Maybach is a behemoth that should have been designed better from the start, but i hinestly believe that they still have a chance to make this a big player in the super prestige market that is still growing due to the world being flushed with disposable income !

  8. The failure is the design of the car itself. Its uber conservative! Mercedes must go bold and aggressive! Make it bigger too!

    The design for the range is way too conversative and is not fierce at all. It looks grand but that is that. Its boring design is uninspiring. The RR Phantom is bold, big and attract onlookers anywhere!

    Design of the product is everything!

Commenting is closed for old articles.

Take Us With You!


Get FREE Dealer Quotes

From dealers near you

Research New Cars


© 2015 MotorAuthority. All Rights Reserved. MotorAuthority is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.