Top Gear (Malaysia) - - Dream Cars -

If there’s one ap­par­ent com­mon de­nom­i­na­tor in this af­flu­ent line-up, it’s AMG’s four-litre V8 block, which is also used in the 560-num­bered vari­ants of the re­cently up­dated S-Class. That range is head­lined by the May­bach – a name re­duced from an in­de­pen­dent model to a trim level, but one en­dowed with fit­tingly os­ten­ta­tious tech and lux­ury none­the­less.

So while its 469bhp out­put is im­pres­sive, or rather nec­es­sary for a limou­sine of such pro­por­tions – the May­bach’s X222 plat­form is 20mm longer than the long-wheel­base V222 – the stand­out fea­tures here are its Magic Sky Con­trol two-sec­tion panoramic sun­roof, En­er­giz­ing Com­fort Con­trol (in-car fra­grance, mood light­ing, en­ter­tain­ment and mas­sage) and ex­ec­u­tive rear seats which ben­e­fit from the May­bach’s longer wheel­base, among oth­ers. Fur­ther­more, the Chauf­feur Pack­age al­lows the seat be­hind the front pas­sen­ger to re­cline even more, sim­i­lar to an air­line’s first-class cabin.

A royal-spec in­te­rior is one thing. The only other area more im­por­tant in a car des­tined to ferry the rich and fa­mous is the qual­ity of its ride. Mercedes-Benz ad­dresses this with its sig­na­ture Magic Body Con­trol adap­tive dampers bol­stered by Road Sur­face Scan. The lat­ter uses a stereo cam­era to pre­dict the con­di­tions of the road within vis­i­ble range, pre-empt­ing the sus­pen­sion to ad­just ac­cord­ingly, en­sur­ing that un­savoury body mo­tions are kept at a min­i­mum.

Be­ing no strangers to the cabin of the W222 S-Class, we found our brief pas­sen­ger ex­pe­ri­ence in the May­bach to be highly sim­i­lar at first, ex­tra legroom and ad­di­tional kit aside. Ride com­fort and NVH lev­els were com­pa­ra­ble in reg­u­lar driv­ing con­di­tions, which is tes­ta­ment to how high the lo­cally as­sem­bled S450L (tested on Page 50) sets the bar to be­gin with. But we don’t doubt the May­bach’s abil­ity to jus­tify its RM1.4mil ask­ing price on longer jour­neys over a wider range of roads.

In a lonely seg­ment starved of gen­uine com­peti­tors, the May­bach does of­fer wealthy ty­coons a daily ride that’s eas­ily dis­tin­guish­able at the lob­bies of coun­try clubs lined with S-Class af­ter S-Class. In­ter­est­ingly, it isn’t even the most ex­pen­sive limou­sine on sale in Malaysia right now. That hon­our goes to the Lexus LS500h, which is priced slightly higher as hy­brid tax in­cen­tives do not ap­ply to fully im­ported ve­hi­cles. But the May­bach will eas­ily cost more af­ter cus­tomi­sa­tion, or if you or­der it in V12-pow­ered S650 for­mat. Yes, you can do that.

Drink con­di­tion­ing. Be­causeAC is so yes­ter­dayOnly the finest cham­pagnes be­long here Looks like any S-Class from the back, un­til youpull up its side

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