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Mercedes tests billionaire appetite for a Maybach crossover



Mercedes-Benz is considering extending its ultra-luxury Maybach emblem with a crossover equipped with a porcelain tea service in a heatable ebony shell targeted to high-end competitors such as Bentley's coveted Bentayga SUV

Targeted at billionaires shedding light on the Beijing Auto Show this week, a concept model features optional white nappa leather reclining seats with massage and aromatherapy features. Mercedes does not say when it will decide to offer the vehicle.

The car would help Mercedes overtake the British car brand Bentley of Volkswagen AG, whose $ 229,000 Bentayga is part of a money-spinning trend for high-seat models even prompted Ferrari and Rolls-Royce, sports Add commercial vehicles to their ranks.

It's "a completely new archetype of a kind never seen before," Gorden Wagener, chief executive officer at Mercedes Daimler AG, said in a statement on Tuesday ahead of the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition.

The crossover would become Mercedes' growing line of lucrative top-end vehicles, such as this year's Gas Schluck AMG GT four-door coupe, as the world's largest luxury auto manufacturer is looking for revenue to fund its expensive switch to battery technology

The concept shown in Beijing shows an electric drive with a 200-mile (320-kilometer). Mercedes declined to outline plans for a battery vehicle for the Maybach Sub-brand.

Chinese Demand

Placing a Maybach crossover in Chinese showrooms would open up a willing audience for the nameplate. The buyers in the country have snapped more than 60 percent of the 25,000 Maybach sedans that Mercedes has sold since the model was introduced in 201

5. This version, currently valued at $ 168,600, is the company's second attempt to revive the name of the 1930s in a challenge for the BMW Rolls-Royce brand . A earlier attempt in 2001 was dropped after nearly a decade of losses.

Tea service in the Maybach crossover

Source: Daimler AG

Mercedes has been introducing attention-grabbing Limited over the last few years. Maybach derivatives are helping bring home the luxury of the Stuttgart-based manufacturer, while most of its customers have one Drive sedan of the A-Class in compact or C-class.

Just over a year ago, the car manufacturer presented the Mercedes Maybach G50, with a limited edition of just 99 vehicles. The G50 is the world's most expensive SUV and costs around $ 500,000. He is capable of traversing desert dunes powered by a V12 engine and has a retractable Landaulet roof at the rear. Customers have also demanded a 300,000-euro convertible with quilted seats and matching luggage. Mercedes has built only 300 cars.

While Maybach accounts for a fraction of Mercedes' total deliveries, which amounted to 2.4 million vehicles last year, increasing sales of high-revenue models is a necessary counterweight to rising revenues. Daimler is investing 10 billion euros to build 10 electric cars by 2022. The new cars could only generate about half of the profit generated by corresponding internal combustion engines, the company last year.


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