Come on Mercedes, you’re better than this lazy crap…

Now that we’ve seen Mercedes’ “latest” concept, I have to say that I’m not impressed in the least bit. When we first saw the teaser video back at the beginning of August,(art177208) I thought for sure we would get the “big surprise” that Chief Designer Gorgon Wagener promised us. This concept was supposed to be an “icon for the brand,” but all I see is a lazy concept that was thrown together just a few weeks before it was set to debut… Did you forget there was a concept lawn at Pebble Beach, Mr. Wagener? Now I’m wondering if that teaser video from within the bowels of the Advance Design Center was actually the very first meeting to discuss the new concept.

With that said, I will say that the Vision 6 looks good as a droptop, but it definitely falls short of what was promised. In the video, it was even mentioned that the front end would be “different.” Of course, they were talking about in comparison to the Concept IAA, but still. In the end, the Vision 6 Cabriolet is every bit the Vision 6 with a standalone windshield and no roof. Of course, they did change the interior a bit to account for a slightly revised dashboard with a set of HVAC vents in the center – that’s something the coupe doesn’t have. It is also a bit less futuristic in comparison but still far on the red side of my “never-gonna-see-production” meter. The car itself is attractive, and I even love the scheme of the interior, but when I saw the similarities in Merc’s second teaser video, I should have known. But, I don’t want to be all negative, so let’s move on from this rant and talk about something good that comes from this specific concept.

A little History

Mercedes Let Us Down with the Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet
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Mercedes Let Us Down with the Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet
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Now, let’s not beat around the bush – the Maybach name has had a fairly rocky past. Introduced as Luftfahrzeug-Motorenbau GmbH back in the early 1900s (1909 to be specific,) the name of the brand was quickly changed to Maybach Motorenbau GmbH in 1912. The Brand didn’t introduce its first car until 1919 but did produce cars from 1921 through 1940. Of course, WWII happened, and Maybach quickly began building engines to power medium and heavy-duty trucks as well as the Panzer II for the Nazis. Unfortunately, the brand never got back to producing vehicles after the war – not that a brand associated with the Nazis would be received that well anyway, I suppose. The company was eventually purchased by Mercedes in 1960 and used on special edition versions of its cars, all hand-built, of course.

1971 - 1980 Mercedes S-class 1971-1980 (W116)
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The Mercedes Special editions all carried the Mercedes badge and serial numbers, but there are still some W108 and W116 models still on the road today with that hand-built goodness. Eventually, the name kind of fizzled into history until Mercedes introduced a new concept in 1997 that eventually led to the Maybach 57 and 62. Expectations for the ultra-luxury brand were high, but it failed to deliver, with brands like Rolls-Royce and Bentley easily beating the company in sales. The Maybach named continued on until 2013 when the last model rolled off the line – just two years after Daimler announced that the brand would be killed off. Little was heard of the name from that point on until 2014 when Daimler finally shed some light on a revival with the Mercedes-Maybach S600 being the very first model to come to life from the brand’s second revival.

Fast forward to today, and there is a total of five models, including the S500 and S600, the S600 Pullman, S650 Cabriolet, and the G650 Landaulet SUV. Last year, we got to lay eyes on the Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Concept, which was followed by the Vision 6 Cabriolet at Pebble Beach in 2017. So, what does the future hold? Let’s see…

Big Things Could Be Coming

Mercedes Let Us Down with the Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet Exterior High Resolution
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One could argue that the Mercedes-Maybach brand is doing well these days in comparison to its past. It was rocky, to say the least, and now there are five models and two concepts in the mix. It’s not a bad start since its revival in 2016. Now, I’ve been pretty critical of the Vision 6 Cabriolet as it is quite lazy considering we just saw the coupe in 2016, but things aren’t always as they seem. Considering Mercedes has gone so far as to introduce a coupe and convertible version of the Vision 6, it’s quite likely that the brand is looking to introduce a standalone production model not based on the S-Class sometime in the near future. That would be a big step for the company as a whole, and could, in fact, usher in a whole new direction for the Maybach name.

2016 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 High Resolution Exterior AutoShow
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Both of the concepts have been purely electrical, both offering “more than 200 miles of range” on a single charge as verified by the EPA (according to Mercedes). It was also rated at more than 500 km on the Euro NEDX cycle. That’s really not bad for a car this size, considering the Tesla Model 3 barely tops it. Charging capacity for both models come in at 350 kW, which is enough to get around 62 miles with just five minutes of charging. Power output is rated at 737 horsepower, enough to get these monsters to 62 mph in less than four seconds and easily to a top speed of 155 mph, which it will naturally be limited. Mercedes has promised charging via public charging stations, a conventional domestic outlet, or a wireless, electromagnetic field.

2017 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet High Resolution
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2016 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6
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So, with this in mind, and the fact that the EPA has already given the Vision 6 Coupe an official rating, something tells me that we’ll see a real production model coming in the next couple of years. It will likely factor into Mercedes’ goal of delivering a whole lineup of electric vehicles over the next decade, but let’s hope it plans on building some cheaper models, too. Producing electric cars for the masses don’t do much if only one percent of the population can afford them.

But, what do you think? Were you disappointed by the concept or did you fall in love with a convertible version of the Vision 6? If money wasn’t an object, would you buy one? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

References

Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6

2016 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6
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Read our full review on the Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6.

Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet

Mercedes Let Us Down with the Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet Exterior High Resolution
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Read our full review on the Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet.

Mercedes Vision

Mercedes Teases Its New Concept For Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
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Read our full stories about the Mercedes Vision.

Maybach 62

2002 Maybach 62
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Read our full review on the Maybach 62.

What do you think?
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