Zeppelin on flight of fancy
Maybach looks to the past for some modern inspiration, writes KEVINHEPWORTH
IF YOU want your limousine with the sweet smell of success and a stonetrimmed interior there is only one place to look — the Maybach stand at the Geneva Motor Show.
Maybach, the super-luxury arm of the Mercedes Benz empire, has pulled out all the stops to launch an iconic badge from the 1930s — the Zeppelin, so named because the V12 engines from the original car also powered the German airships.
Starting at a tick under $1 million, the Maybach Zeppelin is available in the 57 or long-wheelbase 62 configurations but it will be the rare owner who doesn’t turn their car into a personal statement of wealth.
The Zeppelin is pitched as a car for the connoisseur.
options being offered to complement the kid-soft leather and piano-lacquer interior trim surfaces are a perfume atomiser that uses nothing less than purified air to spread the owner’s personal fragrance through the cabin.
Maybach will supply two bespoke fragrances from renowned perfumer Givaudan and use an owner’s personal favourite or even develop an individual fragrance to the owner’s specifications. The atomiser is a mere $5000 or so.
Over-the-top trims have become almost passe at Maybach, where owners have in the past had leather trim made from their own herds of favoured cows, wood inserts from a tree of special significance felled on their own property or interior brightwork in gold in place of the rather common polished steel.
In the Zeppelin, for the first time, an owner can have the interior trimmed in Indian Star Galaxy granite— and not just flat surfaces but complex curves using a process developed specifically for the car.
In common with earlier Maybach models, the Zeppelin is offered with the electrotransparent panoramic glass roof that changes from transparent to opaque and back again by passing an electric current through the liquid crystal membrane.
Under the bonnet the 6.0-litre bi-turbo V12 gives the Zeppelin performance levels to rival high-end sports cars. The engine’s 471kW and 1000Nm can launch the 57 S from stand-still to 100km/h in 4.9 seconds (5.1 for the 62 S) on the way to an electronically governed top speed of 275km/h (250km/h for the 62 S).
Mercedes Benz Australia, which supplied four Maybachs to Australian owners last year, will be able to supply a Zeppelin to any extremely well-heeled Aussie in need.