Mercedes Maybach Review: This 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 (there’s no “Benz” in the name, officially) stays under the Mercedes brand umbrella and is related to the current generation S-Class, but its purpose is still to take on Rolls-Royce and Bentley for the world’s best valet parking spots.
The 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 looks very similar to the regular S-Class, with only a few subtle exterior tweaks to set it apart. Aside from its more imposing length, you can tell it apart from lesser S-Class family models by its chrome B-pillar, unique radiator grille with vertical chrome bars and V12-specific bumper.
In addition, the rear doors have actually been shortened and the side glass has been adjusted accordingly. Discreet double-M badges adorn the rear pillars and lettering spells out “Maybach” on the trunk lid.
It’s about as flawless an ultra-luxury sedan as you’ll find. Really, about the only thing you might accuse the S600 of would be a lack of gravitas. It looks and drives largely like a “garden-variety” S-Class that’s had its midsection let out a bit, and for those looking to share how spectacularly well they’ve fared in the financial department, its reserved appearance may be a disappointment. For more discreet clients, however, its muted looks may be an asset. Whether the 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 is flashy enough may be up for debate, but the car’s intrinsic goodness is not. Like the rest of the S-Class family, the S600 is a superior automobile by virtually any gold-plated yardstick.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 comes standard with an extensive array of equipment. Exterior and/or related highlights include 20-inch wheels, a road-sensing adaptive air suspension (Magic Body Control), all-LED lighting (including adaptive headlights), automatic wipers (with advanced washers and heated blades), a heated windshield, soft-close doors, a panoramic sunroof, a power trunk closer, adaptive cruise control and an automated parking system.
Inside, you’ll find quad-zone automatic climate control (with air purification and cabin fragrance systems), a night vision system, 12-way power front seats (with heating, cooling, massage and memory settings), a head-up display, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel (heated), extended premium leather upholstery, and heated and ventilated rear seats.
Cars don’t get much more opulent than the 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600.
All Maybach S600 models feature the following technology-based features: Mercedes’ COMAND interface (with two 12.3-inch display screens and a touchpad/rotary knob controller), a rearview camera, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a navigation system, voice controls, an in-car WiFi hotspot, Mercedes mbrace telematics, a rear-seat entertainment system and a 24-speaker Burmester surround-sound audio system with a six-CD changer, USB inputs and HD and satellite radio.
The S600’s optional Executive Rear Seat Plus package adds more luxurious two-place seating in the rear, including a full-length center console with heated and cooled cupholders with LED backlighting, as well as two airplane-style folding tray tables.
Stand-alone options include a refrigerated rear console, Magic Sky Control (electrochromatic moonroof glass with user-adjustable opacity), Splitview (a technology that enables the driver and front seat passenger to view different content simultaneously on the same screen), an upgraded Burmester surround-sound audio system and various wheel, interior trim and upholstery upgrades.
Engine & Performance
Single overhead cam (SOHC)
612 ft-lbs. @ 1900 rpm
523 hp @ 4900 rpm
Four-wheel independent suspension
Front and rear stabilizer bar
Powertrains and Performance
The 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 is powered by a turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 engine generating 523 hp and 612 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive are standard.
An S600 accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. The EPA estimates fuel economy at 15 mpg combined (13 city/20 highway).
Every 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 comes standard with traction and stability control (with crosswind mitigation), antilock brakes, front and rear side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. Additional electronic safety features on all Maybach S600 models includes 360-degree cameras, a driver inattention warning system and a forward collision prevention system that will warn the driver of a potential impact and fully apply the brakes if necessary.
Standard Driver Assistance technology includes an active blind-spot warning system (which will steer you back to your lane if you fail to heed its warning), an active lane-departure warning system (ditto), pedestrian recognition for the collision prevention system, a rear-impact detection and preparedness system and an advanced adaptive cruise control system.
Other standard safety features include a night vision system (detects pedestrians and animals through infrared sensors and displays them in the instrument panel) and Mercedes’ mbrace emergency telematics, which includes automatic collision notification, stolen-vehicle location assistance, alarm notification, an SOS emergency services button, geo-fencing for valets and teenage drivers, and remote vehicle controls (via mobile app or computer) that can unlock or lock the car, for instance.
A Mercedes-Maybach S600 stopped from 60 mph in just 112 feet, a strong showing for a large luxury sedan.
Interior Design and Special Features
The 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600’s S-Class roots may suggest a cabin that should compete with the Audi A8 and BMW 7 Series, but its interior actually sits a healthy notch or two above those (very fine) vehicles.
The Maybach delivers a sensory experience like few other automobiles. Rich leather upholstery resides everywhere the hand falls and seemingly stretches from floor to ceiling, replete with beautiful decorative perforations and stitching. A pair of massive, 12.3-inch widescreen displays appear to float in their mounts, with one acting as a gauge cluster and the other keeping tabs on infotainment functions and advanced vehicle settings. At night, driver-adjustable multicolor light pipes behind the aforementioned screens and around the cabin bathe the cabin in a soothing glow. Even the air can be ionized and perfumed to the driver’s specification.
The optional full-length rear console creates a pair of mobile workstations in case there’s work to do on the road.
Thanks to a 7.9-inch wheelbase stretch relative to the S-Class, the rear seats are the place to be, with pampering accommodations that wouldn’t be out of place in a custom-outfitted Gulfstream. There’s more than enough room to stretch out, and with the optional full-length rear center console, it’s easy for a pair of occupants to get work done on the fold-out tray tables, or search the Internet or watch a movie using the twin rear screens. With the seats’ power recline function and pop-out calf support and footrest, it’s also possible to catch a few Zzz’s, or indulge in a quick “hot stone” massage en route to one’s next appointment.
All of the S600 Maybach’s many infotainment functions are controlled by the latest iteration of Mercedes’ COMAND system, which remains one of the most user-friendly around (even if its immense number of functions renders it overwhelming at first). Compared with the setup in other Mercedes-Benz models, this upgraded COMAND interface features a colossal central screen, unique graphics, a touchpad controller and a different physical button layout (buttons for frequently used functions are grouped around the main control knob rather than on the dash). Immediately adjacent to the infotainment screen is the instrument panel, which itself is an equally large display screen complete with simulated digital gauges.
The trunk, as you might expect from a nearly 18-foot-long sedan, is sufficiently large at 16 cubic feet. Note, however, that the optional rear-seat refrigerator and standard Burmester audio system dramatically erode trunk space, to the point of making it difficult to accommodate more than one golf bag in the resulting U-shaped compartment.
Effortless. That’s how the 2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600 feels when you’re behind the wheel. The steering is fairly light, and with lane-keeping assist and/or Distronic Plus cruise control activated, it will even subtly steer the car for you. This isn’t the sportiest car in its category, but you’ll be surprised at how adeptly this very large sedan will hunker down and go around a corner.
The Maybach S600’s V12 engine can accelerate this big sedan to 60 mph in just 5.1 seconds.
You may think you’ve enjoyed a comfortable ride before, but it most likely pales in comparison to the adjustable and predictive air suspension fitted to the Maybach S600. Utilizing a windshield-mounted camera, the car detects bumps and other imperfections in the road ahead and automatically adjusts the air suspension to compensate. The system doesn’t work at all speeds and in all drive modes, but it works imperceptibly and makes short work of speed bumps, which can feel more like pebbles.
The way the S600 gets up to speed is also, well, effortless. Acceleration from the twin-turbo V12 is quick, yet its noises are reduced to a whisper inside the cocoon-like cabin. Mercedes-Benz claims this is the quietest sedan in the world, and it’s an easy boast to believe.