A Week With: 2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic

Status symbols are sought after because they allow people to flaunt a certain standing — whether it’s true or not. And certainly cars such as the 2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic, base price $160,500, does state that at some level, you’re financially well off.

Yet among some car buyers, such vehicles cause ambivalence for one simple reason: they’re far less practical; even wasteful. So is the Mercedes-Maybach sure to cause moral uncertainty before you sign on the dotted line?

The Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4Matic’s two-tone exterior and 22-inch wheels make an expressive SUV.

Overview

My guess would be no, despite this otherwise practical vehicle’s impractical nature. For the 2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic is an overindulgent SUV bauble for those who consider navigating the gravel driveway to their multi-acre homestead off-roading.

But it’s not meant to truly traverse the forest primeval or go boulder bashing. It’s not even meant to be practical. After all, the regular Mercedes-Benz GLS starts at $77,850; slightly less than half the price of a Mercedes-Maybach GLS. It’s like paying $495 for a Prada hair clip. So, what do you get for the extra outlay?

Well, you get an exclusive hedonistic trim level, one that makes this truck a competitor for such overstuffed boxes as the Range Rover SV Autobiography, Bentley Bentayga and Rolls Royce Cullinan. That’s because Maybach is no longer a separate brand.

The Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4Matic’s many Maybach badges ensures there’s no mistaking it.

Exterior

Little has changed for its second year on the market, with a two-tone paint job, massive Maybach grille, epic 22-inch multi-spoke light-alloy wheels, and a conspicuous number of Mercedes-Maybach badges, just to ensure they can see you coming. But if you need to up your profile, you can opt for 23-inch wheels.

Even if you don’t, you’ll find  It’s glamourous; there’s no denying it. And pulling up to an old school luxury venue like The Colony in Palm Beach while behind the wheel ensures attention from valets. Its presence in undeniable. 

Whether it’s excessive is a matter of personal taste.

Interior

When it comes to the cabin of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4MATIC, it’s all bout the back seat.

If you’re wondering what the Mercedes-Maybach GLS600’s cabin is like, keep in mind that this is a Maybach. So you’re getting every German-engineered frippery you’d ever want. The cabin’s roof is lined in leather, and the seats are heated and cooled while offering various massaging functions.

And opulent? Oh my gosh yes. But it’s that very lavishness that renders it less practical. Unlike the less-expensive GLS, which seats five, this one seats four, thanks to its reclining rear bucket seats and center rear console.

The console houses a fridge, large enough to keep your favorite bottle of bubbly chilled. But that same refrigerator takes up an enormous amount of space at the forward center end of the cargo hold, reducing the available space to a nearly useless u-shape. And the rear seats don’t fold down, so don’t even try.

Then again, who’s buying this for practicality? 

The instrument panel is reminiscent of the one used in the Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Powertrain

Motivating this rig is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 mild hybrid system mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission funneling its 550 horsepower and 538 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels. The EPA rates this mild hybrid at 16 mpg in combined city/highway driving, which proves accurate.

That’s less power than the less-expensive Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4Matic, which boasts 603 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque. But this coach costs more, and in the world of conspicuous consumption, that’s what matters more.

Safety and Technology

The grille of the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 4Matic differs from that of lesser Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not crash tested the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600. As you’d expect, there’s an extensive variety of standard driver assistance systems such as forward-collision warning with pedestrian detection, automatic-emergency braking, blind-spot warning, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control system with semi-autonomous functionality, although it only lasts a minute or new two before you have to retake control.

Like the S-Class, the instrument panel houses two screens: the digital instrument cluster and the infotainment screen controlled by a touchpad. In addition, there are small touchpads on the steering wheel. And you can operate vehicle functions by voice.

There are 7 USB ports, a 115-volt household power outlet, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as well as a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot. But the infotainment system houses enough sub-menus and setup choices to make you want to skip the whole ordeal entirely.

Driving Impressions

Mercedes-Benz states that the GLS600’s twin-turbocharged V-8 propels this 6,085-pound SUV from zero to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds, about a second slower than the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63. Thanks to an air suspension, the Mercedes-Maybach provides the comfortable ride you’d expect in this class of vehicle, while also providing confidence while cornering, although there’s no disguising this vehicle’s 6,085-pound curb weight. And that’s before you load up the fridge with Cristal. And yes, it’s quiet, so much so, you can hear the money in your back account earning interest.

2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic

Dimension L: 204.9 inches/W: 79.9 inches/H: 72.4 inches/Wheelbase: 123.4 inches
Weight 6,085 pounds
Powertrain 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 mild hybrid, 9-speed automatic transmission & all-wheel drive
Fuel Economy 15 mpg city/19 mpg highway/16 mpg combined
Performance Specs 550 horsepower and 538 pound-feet of torque
Price Base price: $160,500; As tested: $165,800 including $1,050 destination charge.
On-Sale Date Available now

Wrap Up

The Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 isn’t about the normal attributes you require of an SUV, although one suspects it’s there. Of course, it lacks the practicality of its less expensive sibling, but usefulness isn’t the primary concern here; profiling is. That this vehicle does in spades, like a beautiful designer dress, a custom suit or a Prada hair clip. It’s another luxury lifestyle accessory, one shod with 22-inch wheels. 

2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS600 4Matic ­— Frequently Asked Questions

How much is a 2022 Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600?

The Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 starts at $160,500 without options, destination charge or sales taxes. 

Is the Mercedes-Maybach GLS a 7-seater?

While the standard Mercedes-Benz GLS seats up to seven people, the Mercedes-Maybach GLS only seats four.

What does it mean when a Mercedes is 4Matic?

It is the name of Mercedes-Benz’s all-wheel drive system.

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