The 2022 Mercedes-Maybach S 680 is here, and the V12-powered sedan is taking its rightful place at the top of Mercedes’ S-Class lineup. Yep, you read that right. The recently-revealed S-Class is retaining its 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12 — you just need to pony up for the top-tier Maybach version, not the already-debuted V8-powered Mercedes-Maybach S 580.
The hand-built 12-cylinder engine makes the same 621 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque as it did in the previous generation Mercedes-Maybach, but this time the effortless torque will be doled out via Mercedes’ 4Matic all-wheel-drive system. That’s new for the V12, as you could only get rear-wheel-drive before. Mercedes says the torque split is 69% to the rear axle and 31% to the front. This ensures that your chauffeur won’t experience any undue slipping in inclement weather, an expected luxury in the engineering marvel that is the S 680. According to Mercedes, adding all-wheel drive required a stronger front axle and a new differential to handle the V12’s prodigious torque. The 0-60 mph sprint happens in a luxurious 4.4 seconds, which is 0.2 second quicker than before.
A new “Dynamic Select” mode is supposed to make the ride and acceleration smoother than before, and the rear-axle steering of the standard S-Class is again made available on the Maybach — you can choose either 4.5- or 10-degrees of angle for the rear axle.
Moving beyond the oily bits to the interior luxury additions, Mercedes claims it made the cabin even quieter than before with the help of active road noise compensation and its Burmester “4D” sound system cancelling out road noise like noise-cancelling headphones do. The doors are powered to open and close on command by pressing buttons in the infotainment system — another feature chauffeurs should enjoy, as there’s no longer any need to get up to physically open and close the doors. The feature is even integrated into the blind spot warning system to ensure you don’t open a door into oncoming traffic. And if you really like gesture controls, Mercedes says the doors can be opened with hand waves, too.
Leather is simply everywhere, and it’s the highest quality Nappa Leather Mercedes offers. Besides the obvious, you’ll find this beautiful leather on the headliner, dashboard, instrument panel surrounds, glovebox, window frames, pillars, sun visors, door sill inserts and backrest pockets. Diamond quilting and contrast piping highlights the luxurious cabin, and Maybach emblems class it up further. New LED interior lighting makes the cabin feel more modern, and the MBUX Interior Assistant allows for even more hand gestures and automated processes for backseat passengers. For example, you can wave your hand to extend the rear sunblind in the back.
As for the design, the new S 680 builds on the already revised S-Class and looks just like the V8-powered Mercedes-Maybach S 580. You don’t have to spec a two-tone paint finish like the example in Mercedes’ launch photos depict, but it is available to further stand out from non-Maybach models. The chromed-up front grille (with Maybach lettering) and bumper are unique to the Maybach in what is certainly an attempt to bring even more elegance and flash to the table. The V12 badge sits proudly on the fenders, and those big wheels are meant to simulate champagne flutes. Both the exhaust and lower rear bumper are revised versus a standard S-Class, and the expected Mercedes-Maybach logo graces the rearmost pillar.
A price was not provided, but the current Mercedes-Maybach S 650 starts at $203,545. Expect this one to be even more when it arrives in the U.S. on account of its added all-wheel drive and additional features. Speaking of, Mercedes says the new S 680 should land here in the first half of 2022.