Could the Mercedes-Maybach “SUL” be an exclusive EV?

At Auto China 2018, the Mercedes-Maybach Vision Ultimate Luxury concept was presented, which the brand showcased as a design study of a body shape combining a limousine (or ‘sedan’ referred by the Europeans) with SUV ride height. As per a report on Handelsblatt, the company is now working on delivering such a project to the market.

The report states Daimler’s Development Board member, Markus Schäfer, hinted that new innovations are the need of the hour to maintain momentum, and the publication says it has learnt from internal circles that Schäfer wants to cross the two famous body styles of SUV and sedan.

Mercedes Maybach Vision Luxury Concept front
The Mercedes-Maybach Vision Luxury concept boasted of wireless charging through induction technology.

The Mercedes-Maybach Vision Ultimate Luxury concept did exactly that, and was billed as an electric vehicle concept too. The SUL, or Sports Utility Limousine, could get the greenlight as the brand tries to capture new audience segments in the post-Covid world. Another aspect is that Mercedes has already developed a high end electric vehicle platform (EVA) for the upcoming Mercedes EQS, the S Class equivalent Mercedes electric car, hence the development time (and costs) are leveraged in favor of the Mercedes-Maybach SUL.

Coming to the concept itself, it measured at 5,260 mm in length, 2,110 mm in width and 1,764 mm in height and featured 24-inch turbine inspired wheels. The Mercedes-Maybach Vision Ultimate Luxury concept merges design influences of Western and Far Eastern hemispheres, according to the manufacturer.

With four compact permanent-magnet synchronous motors (one at each wheel), the Mercedes-Maybach concept offered all wheel drive and 750 hp. A flat underfloor 80 kWh battery was rated for over 200 miles of EPA (500 km on the NEDC) range and a top speed of 250 km/h. From 2018, technology has also evolved such that the upcoming Mercedes EQS is touted to get 435 miles (700 km) of range from a 100+ kWh battery.

Mercedes Maybach Vision Luxury Concept interior
With Rolls Royce announcing an EV for this decade, there is a strong business case for the Mercedes-Maybach SUL to be an exclusive electric vehicle.

While the Mercedes-Maybach Vision Ultimate Luxury concept featured fast charging up to 350 kW, it also featured induction charging (contactless) by an electromagnetic field below the car.

Inside, the driver’s area is “reduced to the essentials” with a free standing widescreen double 12.3 inch displays. The highlight of the rear seat is an integral, heated tray with teapot and cups which the manufacturer says allows for “exquisite tea drinking enjoyment”. There are also spades of ebony wood, which is traditional in Chinese design.

If the Mercedes-Maybach SUL is greenlit for production, we expect test prototypes next year once engineers have completed the EQS project, and a launch could take place in by mid-2023. There is a strong case for the Mercedes-Maybach electric vehicle as rival Rolls Royce announced that it will launch an electric vehicle this decade owing to tightening emission norms.