Yesterday, Maybach heralded the arrival of the S 580, with the type of announcement you’d expect if you started at $184,900, or roughly 69 percent of the $269,039 median home price nationwide, according to Zillow.com.
Considering that Beverly Hills, California is the only place in the U.S. where I’ve seen more Maybachs on the street than in a dealership, maybe comparing the cost of the new S 580 to that of the median home price across the country is a little unfair. No, if we take the median home price in the 90077 zip code, that of Bel Air, California, at $2.225 million, that’s only 8.3 percent. This is less than when you take the average price paid for a 2020 Toyota Tacoma, $27,895 according to CarGurus, compared to the national median home price of $269,039, which would be 10.36 percent.
Now that we have the 2021 Maybach S 580 in proper perspective at the level for which it was intended, it seems like something of a bargain. Consider that you get all the technology of a top-of-the-line Mercedes-Benz, plus the allure and status that the Maybach nameplate implies. As you’d expect, most of the information on the Maybach is centered on how it feels and the experience it delivers. We’ll get to that in a moment, after discussing what drives the S 580.
First, the Maybach S 580 4MATIC has a mild-hybrid-drive, 48-volt electrified 496 horsepower, 516 lb-ft/torque biturbo V8 engine, with Airmatic air suspension. There’s what Mercedes refers to as counter-phased sound waves to reduce low-frequency noise and a new dynamic select mode for the Maybach that provides smoother acceleration. Rear-axle steering with up to 10 degrees of steering angle improves maneuverability in the narrow, back alleys of Beverly Hills, and at low speeds much like that of a compact car.
If the yardstick by which every vehicle is judged is the size of their multimedia touch screen, then the Maybach’s 12.8-inch OLED display in the center console, and five screens in the front and rear, are indicative of leadership. Mercedes-Benz User Experience’s (MBUX) second-generation infotainment system debuts on the Maybach, with individual profiles accessible through biometric, fingerprint authentication. A bit too over-the-top even for a James Bond film? Speakers integrated into the front seats allow only the driver to hear navigation instructions, an otherwise-odious distraction for anyone along for the ride. Active ambient lighting is used to support driver assistance systems, or to acknowledge the MBUX user.
With 30 speakers and eight resonators, the Burmester 4D surround sound system goes beyond a three-dimensional listening experience to achieve 4D sound. In addition to music reproduction, the 4D sound is used to create an even more intense, emotional connection when paired with the standard energizing comfort system.
Last but not least, new rear-seat airbags can reduce the impact on the head and neck of outer-rear passengers in the event of a frontal collision. The 2021 Maybach S 580 is a 2021 model that actually arrives in 2021, sometime around mid-year.