The Maybach GLS600 is Mercedes' most luxurious SUV yet and super-expensive SUVs | Mini Auto

Just hearing the word “Maybach” instantly transports me to a star-studded red carpet event or a flashy music video with champagne and beautiful people. The resurgence of the brand in 1997 through the 57 Concept established Maybach as the final word in German luxury, and it has essentially maintained that status for the past 25 years.

The 2021 Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 marks a new era for the brand as iconic as Maybach's first crossover. Going head-to-head with relative newcomers like the Rolls-Royce Cullinan and Bentley Bentayga – both of which have exploded in sales – the Maybach GLS is more than just a Mercedes-Benz on steroids to stand out. And both yes and no.

Chrome features grab your attention before stepping inside the Maybach GLS, while premium options like rear recliner and champagne fridge adorn the cabin. There's even a Maybach-specific driving mode that makes the full-size SUV feel like clouds on the road. It all lends credence to the SUV's six-figure starting price; The Maybach GLS is priced at $160,500.

But at the other end of the spectrum, there's still too much GLS in this car's DNA. Unsurpassed levels of comfort, safety and technology give the Maybach GLS impressive scores - in fact, it's the highest-rated SUV we've driven to date. But the clearly visible GLS skeleton, in contrast to earlier Rolls-Royce and Bentley alternatives, is relatively dull in terms of experience. However, that doesn't mean this luxury crossover is definitely not worth the price.

Design is clearly subjective, so tell us we need to test it thoroughly if you disagree. However, the Mercedes-Maybach GLS is considered a fast car. Most of the problems with the styling lie with the front end, namely the overuse of chrome in the grille and the bottom vents that are completely fussy with the same treatment.

The Maybach GLS carries a variation of the traditional Mercedes grille and front bumper, but it does away with the embedded three-point logo (because of the Maybach) and instead uses only bright chrome crossbars. But it's the chrome vent inserted just below that draws the eye more immediately, and not in a good way; they don't blend well with the overall design of the GLS, especially the bright Designo Cardinal Red paint job ($360 option).

There's no better place (maybe in the world?) than the back seat of a Maybach GLS. The two rear seats are covered in Nappa leather with heating, cooling and massage functions, as well as legroom available (an impressive 43.4 inches to be exact). If you're sitting behind the passenger, there's even a button that can fold the front seats forward, allowing you to recline fully - almost flat - with a footrest supporting your foot and a head pillow. It is very comfortable. There are also buttons on the doorway that allow you to raise and lower the window shade at will to keep out harsh sunlight and/or the paparazzi.

Between these two seats is a full-featured center console, most obviously a detachable tablet that lets you control basic MBUX functions. There are also two folding desks ($1,800 option), making it easy to work on your laptop or eat Chinese takeout — I did both — and there's even a refrigerator. champagne holder with two champagne compartments, because of course there is. The only thing missing, really, is someone will hand-feed you the grapes - although I'm sure Mercedes will oblige if you ask them to be tactful enough.

However, one interesting feature this car has is the model-specific Maybach mode that really adds to the comfort of the home. The Maybach drive mode causes the twin-turbo V8 to mute a whisper - even more so than the normal Comfort mode - and softens throttle response, powertrain and suspension to make the GLS feel like a A true land yacht. Only a handful of other crossovers feel this ease on the road, with main rivals like the Rolls-Royce Cullinan and Bentley Bentayga most notable.

The Maybach GLS600 is Mercedes' most luxurious SUV yet and super-expensive SUVs | Mini Auto The Maybach GLS600 is Mercedes' most luxurious SUV yet and super-expensive SUVs | Mini Auto Reviewed by Dang Nhan on June 13, 2021 Rating: 5

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