Likely to be priced about £150,000, the sweeping long, low and dramatic limousine with a V12 engine could be in a head-on confrontation with Rolls-Royce soon after the turn of the century. But before hearing the news from Britain, a Mercedes spokesman said the project would be unlikely to go ahead if the German manufacturer had formed a strategic partnership with Rolls-Royce to supply engines.
Daimler board passenger car chief Jurgen Hubbert said that disappointment in losing out to arch-rival BMW for the contract to supply Rolls-Royce with engines for its next-generation models had 'influenced' the creation of the concept. He admitted: 'I think it is fair comment for you to say that if we had been allied with Rolls-Royce, this would not have happened.'
This week's announcement from Crewe could well have a profound effect on the resurrection of Maybach. A decision on producing the car, which boasts sumptuous seating similar to that in an executive jet, three telephone systems and an information centre which operates via a massive, 20in LCD screen, is expected within weeks.c