Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet revealed

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 CabrioletThe Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet is a €300,000, limited-to-300 edition that brings delicious colour (and some of the excitement) of the recent Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 concept to showrooms from spring 2017.

The ultra-exclusive model is the first convertible from the recently-reinvigorated Mercedes-Maybach brand. It debuts at the 2016 LA Auto Show.

It’s all about Sensual Purity, says Mercedes-Maybach

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

The Mercedes-Maybach form of modern luxurious is dubbed ‘Sensual Purity’ by the firm: apparently (it says here), it is both hot and cool at the same time. Such as its fantastically rich red paint, offset by deep polished metal and those amazing 20-inch bichromatic 20-inch forged alloys. Swarovski headlights are optional. Yes, that’s Swarovski headlights.

Inside, we’re told ‘everything flows’

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

It’s leather everywhere within the four-seat Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet. Check out the seats: the waterfall-like feature is created by progressive perforations. Diamond quilted side bolsters adds further decadence. If you don’t like the nut brown magnolia trim here, choose from one of nine additional interior colours, from nice porcelain and saddle brown, to more dubious pastel yellow and black.

The trim is like you’ll find on a yacht

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Pretty much all the interior trim will be commissioned bespoke for each of the 300 Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolets. Some might choose the flowing lines detailing seen here – inspired, says the firm, by the Mercedes-Benz Style ‘Arrow 460 Granturismo’ yacht. A special precision-machine process ices the trim a 3D look.

You get Mercedes-Maybach luggage for free

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Mercedes-Benz is pleased with the Maybach luggage included with every S 650 Cabriolet: two travel backs and two smaller man/woman bags, made from the same leather used in the car. Indeed, they match the interior leather. Needless to say, they fit perfectly.

What engine does the Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet use?

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Under the bonnet lies, naturally, a V12. The 6.0-litre biturbo unit puts out 630hp and, in Euro-speak, a dizzying 1,000Nm of torque between 2,300-4,300rpm. Such pulling power is enough to take it from 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds, in utter refinement. Economy isn’t so disastrous given this, either: 23.5mpg and CO2 of 272g/km.

How will it drive?

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

On the road, it will drive like most other S-Class Cabriolets, probably: utterly impeccably and with gloriously refined comfort. The Airmatic suspension is largely unchanged and the seven-speed auto is also familiar. Monster engine apart, creating a distinctive drive isn’t the order of the day here. Creating a jewel-like possession overall is.

So it’s pretty special, huh?

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Just to underline how special the Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet is, every one of the 300 editions will be delivered with a welcome pack. This will include a keyring made of the same nappa leather as the interior, in the same colour, with ‘1 of 300’ lettering. Not special enough? How about a certificate personally signed by Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Dr Dieter Zetsche? Will that do you?

It’s a keeper, the Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet

Mercedes-Benz knows this new Maybach edition is a keeper. So it’s giving every owner a special car cover finished in the same colour as the soft-top roof. Diamond-quilted, it’s embroidered with the Maybach logo and lettering on the bonnet. Just the job to keep your prized possession spick and span.

What other Mercedes-Maybach models are on sale?

Since reviving the Maybach brand as a premium alternative to the Mercedes-AMG performance brand, Mercedes-Benz has been swelling the Mercedes-Maybach ranks. The original Mercedes-Maybach S 500 and S 600 models, launched in February 2015, have now been joined by an armour-plated S 600 Guard bulletproof limo. There’s also an S 600 Pullman, with a stretched rear that’s so big, occupants sit ‘vis-à-vis’ (one row faces forwards, the other faces rearwards). Next year, an armour-plated S600 Pullman Guard arrives.

Mercedes-Maybach S 650 Cabriolet: in pictures

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Jaguar I-Pace

New Jaguar I-Pace Concept electric SUV revealed

Jaguar I-PaceThe Jaguar I-Pace Concept SUV is the British sports car firm’s first ever electric car – and if you already like the look of it, get ready: Jaguar will roll out the production version in 2017, and promises the new I-Pace will be on our roads by 2018.

In less than two years, this new zero-emissions Jaguar EV could be plugged in on your driveway. Read on to find out why it’s so electrifying…

Jaguar I-Pace Concept: revealed in LA

Jaguar I-Pace

Jaguar has revealed the i-Pace Concept electric SUV ahead of the 2016 LA Auto Show: it will make the car the star of its show stand later this week. We reckon it’s already odds on to be the star of the show: with a 310-mile range, 0-60mph in 4.0 seconds, roomy and luxurious five-seat interior plus styling that’s a different take on a Jaguar, there’s lots to get excited about here.

In pictures: new Jaguar I-Pace Concept

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Jaguar reckons it has rethought the car with the I-Pace Concept. The cab-forward design references the C-X75 supercar (driven by baddie Franz Oberhauser in Bond’s Spectre), rather than being a conventional car with a bonnet. It’s tall, like an SUV, but has a silhouette more like a sports car. It seats five and is smaller on the outside than sector rivals such as the BNW X5, but bigger inside than all of them. And all because it’s electric.

New dimensions

Jaguar I-Pace

Because there’s no combustion engine, the wheelbase can be longer (almost 3 metres, in fact – longer than a Smart Fortwo is overall!), the overhangs shorter. The rear haunches can be more aggressive. There’s more interior space, better visibility and improved aerodynamics. Jaguar says the exterior mimics mid-size SUVs, but rear legroom matches full-size SUVs and luxury cars.

A Jaguar like no other

Jaguar I-Pace

The appearance of the Jaguar I-Pace Concept is intentionally different to, say, the Jaguar F-Pace SUV, despite the styling similarities. Designer Ian Callum said he was determined the look would reflect the change in mechanicals. “With the I-Pace Concept, the revolution is in the profile, not the design language,” he said. “The profile is possible because this car is electric. It’s not just that we wanted to create something that was very different from anything else we do: we wanted the design to celebrate the new battery electric technology.”

Detail differences

Jaguar I-Pace

Design highlights of the Jaguar I-Pace Concept include the low cabin, sporty windowlines and heavily curved glass, the ultra-low (for an SUV) bonnet. It’s as aerodynamic as it looks: the Cd drag factor is just 0.29. At the front, the current Jaguar brand grille is retained, and there’s a C-X75-style bonnet scoop that cuts drag. At the rear, there’s no wiper, just a ‘fast’ tailgate shape and hydrophobic glass.

An interior Jaguar can be proud of, at last

Jaguar I-Pace

The I-Pace Concept seats five within a cabin that’s as futuristic-Jaguar as the outside. Interiors has been a weakness of the new-era of Jaguars up to now; only the F-Pace really passes muster. The I-Pace Concept is a massive leap forward and suggests future Jaguar interiors are going to be as appealing as the exteriors. Airy, sporty, contemporary and visually appealing, it’s a clever, warm cabin that Jaguar is rightly already chuffed with.

It has a flightdeck rather than a dashboard

Jaguar I-Pace

Jaguar says the I-Pace Concept launches its new ‘flightdeck’ interface for driver controls. There’s a floating centre console, simple and clear displays, plus a combination of touchscreens, rotary dials and multi-function buttons: Jaguar hasn’t gone fully-digital here. There are smart capacitive switches on the new-design steering wheel, invisible until activated, which respond to the driver with haptic ‘micro-clicks’ when pressed. A bit like an iPhone.  

It has stowage boxes not gearboxes

Jaguar I-Pace

Because there’s no transmission, there’s a clever 8-litre stowage area in the centre console. And no transmission means no traditional gearlever, so there’s an extra stowage area where that would normally sit. Jaguar calls the seats ‘luxury slimline’ pews and calls the driving position ‘sports command’. Higher than normal, but still sporty-feeling.

There are some beautiful design details

Jaguar I-Pace

Jaguar’s using some gorgeous contemporary materials within the I-Pace Concept. The burl wood on the dash is laser-etched with the (slightly cheesy) words ‘Lovingly crafted by Jaguar Est. Coventry 1935’. Paw-print labels are stitched into the seat seams (Jaguar, geddit?). There are laser-etched driving gloves on the slide-out passenger shelf. The Jaguar lozenge pattern features throughout. It’s luxury, boutique-like attention to detail we hope carries through to production.

It’s sports car fast

Jaguar I-Pace

The Jaguar I-Pace Concept uses dual 200hp electric motors, one on the front axle and one on the rear. That means a combined 400hp and 516lb ft of torque, sent to all four wheels. Jaguar says 0-60mph in 4.0 seconds, so faster than a cooking Porsche 911. There’s also no lag and no gearchanges, simply seamless surge. It’s going to be an exciting performer, alright.

It will handle like a sports car

Jaguar I-Pace

Jaguar has fitted the same type of double wishbone front suspension as on the F-Type to the I-Pace Concept. Sports car suspension for a sports car SUV, it insists. With a low centre of gravity and centralised masses from having the batteries packed low within the wheelbase, chief engineer Mike Cross is promising “this will be the first electric vehicle developed for enthusiasts who love driving”.

It’s double-take roomy

Jaguar I-Pace

The Jaguar I-Pace Concept, as mentioned, is a seriously roomy five-seat SUV, insists Jaguar. Moving the front-seat occupants forwards has created more space for those in the back. And in the boot: it’s a practical 530 litres with the seats up, despite the need to pack batteries in. And because the front electric motor is space-efficient, there’s even another small 28-litre boot in the front, a bit like a Porsche 911. 

It has a Tesla-like electric range

Jaguar I-Pace

Tesla’s electric cars set the benchmark for EV driving range. The Jaguar I-Pace Concept is able to measure up though. On the European NEDC cycle, the range between battery charges is over 310 miles; on the U.S. EPA cycle, it’s over 220 miles. For the average commuter, that means once-a-week recharges. A fast charge will top up the 90kWh lithium ion battery pack to 80% full in 90 minutes.

Ian Callum on Jaguar I-Pace Concept

Jaguar I-Pace

“The I-Pace Concept is a radical departure for electric vehicles. It represents the next generation of battery electric vehicle design,” says Callum. “It’s a dramatic, future-facing design – the product of authentic Jaguar DNA matched with beautiful, premium details and British craftsmanship.”

And the best bit of all?

The Jaguar I-Pace Concept is not just a concept!

Jaguar I-Pace

The Jaguar I-Pace isn’t some flight of fantasy either. “It is a preview of a five-seat production car that will be on the road in 2018,” confirms Jaguar. “This will be Jaguar’s first-ever battery-powered electric vehicle.” Yes, things are happening fast: so fast, the production version will be fully revealed before next year is out. The Jaguar I-Pace performance electric SUV is coming, soon. Want one yet?

2016 Mercedes-Benz SL

New Mercedes-Benz SL teased: LA debut for revised roadster

2016 Mercedes-Benz SLMercedes-Benz will debut a revised SL roadster at the 2015 LA Motor Show next week, and has today teased the new car with a moody preview shot.

The firm isn’t saying much about the new SL at this stage, other than confirming it’s a facelift rather than an all-new car.

It’s a “new appearance for an automotive icon,” says Mercedes-Benz. “The SL with a new front and diamond grille.”

It’ll get its “world premiere at the LA Auto Show”. And, for now, that’s it. So let’s get our specs out and compare the new car with the current one.

2015 Mercedes-Benz SL

Differences? Well, it’s amazing what a new front bumper and grille can do. The new car has more sculptural air intakes, a crisper grille and the lovely Mercedes-Benz diamond grille, giving it a much-needed dose of Mercedes-AMG GT cool.

Headlights are the same shape but have modern new LED innards, and Mercedes-Benz has also smoothed out the shape of the grille itself.

As for the rest of it, we’ll have to wait and see. The SL was only recently treated to a new fuel-saving six-cylinder 3.0-litre twin-turbo SL 400 model, sitting below the classic V8 SL 500 and snorty SL 63 AMG and SL 65 AMG duo: new engines are thus unlikely.

What it probably will do is sharpen the suspension, overhaul the interior and blend in latest-gen infotainment and connectivity systems. Next week, we’ll find out all.

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Audi Prologue previews new A6, A7 and A8 says boss

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