(2003 model shown)
The Maybach line of uber-luxury cars is sold via select Mercedes-Benz dealers and is marketed to those rarified individuals who would otherwise find Bentleys and Rolls-Royces to be simply too common. Customers don't merely "buy" a Maybach, they "commission" them to their own specifications. At over $300,000, the Type 57 sedan is regarded as the "driver's car" in the line - meaning it's intended for the adventurously wealthy who otherwise eschew a chauffeur. As in the yachting industry, the car's numeric nomenclature corresponds to its overall length, which is 5.73 meters. Even at that size the car is amply powered by a 543-horsepower twin-turbocharged V12 engine, which comes mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. As you might imagine, a sticker price this stratospheric includes nearly every imaginable convenience feature, including power-closing doors and fully reclining rear seats. A total of ten airbags, including side-impact airbags for all four outward passengers, are installed around its plush and posh cabin. Few, if any, changes are expected on this limited-volume auto for 2005.