• Oct 1st 2007 at 4:31PM
  • 19
Audi has Bentley, BMW has Rolls-Royce (check out our review of the $400k Phantom!), and Mercedes-Benz has Maybach. Both Bentley and Rolls-Royce have proven to be valuable upper echelon assets for their respective parent companies, but Maybach has never made it that far. Expected to sell around 600 units per year, the exclusive marque only managed to move 164 units in the U.S. last year.
Mercedes recently made a move to minimize its losses by reducing the number of Maybach dealerships in the U.S. from 71 to 42. Though many Maybach dealerships are attached to Mercedes-Benz dealerships, owners were still forced to spend around a half a million dollars to build special "studios" that pampered the ultra-rich who were interested in a Maybach.

In order to close a Maybach dealership, however, Mercedes offers compensation those dealers who invested in the brand. Unfortunately, the automaker is only paying out 25 cents on the dollar, meaning a dealer who invested $500,000 is only getting $125,000 back. Buying high and selling low is not the best investment decision, but then again, neither is buying a Maybach.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      There is no doubt in my mind that the Maybach is a wonderful car. However, the reason it did not sell is that it is competing with none other than Rolls-Royce. Its brand recognition among its potential buyers is unrivaled, and its understated elegance and retro elements make the 57 and 62 seem ugly and unwieldy. There is simply nothing that can touch a Rolls-Royce Phantom in pure luxury right now in my opinion. Maybach should count itself lucky just to have sold 164
      • 7 Years Ago
      I wonder what Mercedes is going to do next to challenge München und Ingolstadt. Perhpas a revival of Daimler? =)
      • 7 Years Ago
      Audi has Bentley? VW does!
        • 7 Years Ago
        VW has Bentley - and Porsche has VW...
          • 7 Years Ago

          Porsche has some VW shares, but that doesn't make Porsche the parent company of VW.

        • 6 Years Ago
        actually in all fairness VW own porsche audi bugatii and quite a few other big brands
      • 7 Years Ago
      Mercedes killed the Maybach with the S-Class.

      That goes without saying.
      But if they did not, they would of killed the S-Class which is a more important car to them globally. The S-Class has to be very advanced in every way. That's what makes an S-Class.

      Styling the new S-Class to look like a sleeker sportier Maybach 57 was not such a good idea.

      Think of it this way:
      Why buy the Lexus ES when you can get a loaded Camry for less?
        • 7 Years Ago
        Roadside Assistance :D
      • 7 Years Ago
      Does Maybach have the recognition that Rolls Royce or Bentley have? I think that right there is a kill shot. People who buy these cars (IMHO) want to be seen in a super luxury car. The average Joe knows damn well what the Spirit of Ecstasy looks like, likewise the Flying B. The Double M doesn't quite strike that chord with people.

      Ohh... and that design is ass awful.
      • 7 Years Ago
      What's the problem with Maybach? How about the new S-Class which looks much more stylish and has better engine options at a fraction of the cost?

      And the Maybach has nowhere near the presence that a Bentley or a Rolls-Royce does. Looks impressive, but nothing close to what the other ultra-luxury marques bring to the table.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hard to say what's going through an ultra-lux buyer's mind.

      Every Phantom and variant of the Continental GT I've ever seen (Chicago) as been driven by its owner and not a chauffeur.
      Maybe a Maybach is *too* large, unwieldy and, yes, like an oversized S class.
      How on earth do you market an ultra lux like this? That's a very short mailing list.

      Just finished the RR Phantom review. GA GA GA GA GA :-O
      • 7 Years Ago
      It is my dreamcar, I can not understand people who could afford it do not buy one..
        • 7 Years Ago
        The failure of Maybach is because of this:

        The car came out in 2005 with a 5.5 V12 and 510hp. Then same Year Mercedes puts out the S65 with 604hp and half the price. People are like what the hell why buy Maybach when I can buy a S65 and a SL65 for the same price.

        Then what does mercedes do? It throws another bomb at the Maybach. It redesigns the next generation S-Class to look just like the Maybach. The rich guy walks into Mercedes/Maybach dealership again and sees a S65 and a Maybach 62 parked next to each other. The Maybach 62 makes 550hp now but the S65 still is the KING OF ALL ENGINE beasts. Then he sees the sticker price is twice as much. He then buys a S65 and the wife gets a SL65 and they go home having paid less.

        Then Mercedes throws the mother of all bombs at Maybach for 2007. Thinking it is not expensive enough, increases the price by 50,000 and cuts dealers by 29 and still keeps the car underpowered compared to the S65.
        • 7 Years Ago
        In 2004 when all the AMG 65s came out they asked Mercedes North America Head whether the Sclass will get the 65 engine. He said no, we have a new line called Maybach and that would be the most powerful sedan. We dont want to undercut the king of our lineup. 65 will be used for CL and SL.
        One year later the S65 came out. They asked him again if this would undercut the Maybach. He said no it should not. The Maybach is not about the engine. Its about presence and luxury and cruising. The S65 will not affect the Maybach in anyway.

        You think!
      • 7 Years Ago
      The car was booring - it looked like an overgrown Camry.
      • 7 Years Ago
      71 dealers? I think there are only about 20 dealers in the for RR and about 35 for Bentley in the states.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Mercedes missed a historical opportunity with the Maybach brand! They should have made the Maybach look as something completely outstanding and maybe with some fine retro elements. But they just took an S-class and injected some steroids in it. Already finishied... But it's not that much easy! Maybe anything related to the Zeppelin airships that were powered by huge Maybach engines would have been a good idea?
      If the Maybach wouldn't look just like a better Mercedes it could have been a tremendous success!
      • 7 Years Ago
      All the points about the AMGs undercutting the Maybach brand are spot on. Same with what was said about the stylings of the car. They might have even been better suited by adding some variety to the lineup instead of ditching dealerships. Anybody remember this monster?
      Who would want an SL65 over this?
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