A V12 sits at the pinnacle of Mercedes-Benz’s engine line-up, but probably not for much longer. In light of this, the 6.0-litre bi-turbo V12-engined S650 Maybach Night Edition is a rousing send-off for the W222-generation S-Class. It may be the last first-class sedan of its kind.
Anticipation is building steadily ahead of the official unveiling of the W223-generation S-Class. Last month, Mercedes-Benz revealed the front-end design of its next-generation first-class sedan during an online presentation featuring Daimler chief executive Ola Kallenius, who confirmed that the new first-class sedan would still be revealed (and go into production) this year. Click here to read that report.
The S650 Night Edition comes shod with "smoked" 20-inch alloys and features distinctive badging on its front fenders.
Meanwhile, it was reported that the Three-pointed Star’s archrival, BMW, would phase out its 6.6-litre V12 engine, which features only in the M760Li xDrive, later this year. Another version of the motor will live on in Rolls-Royce models, but it was telling that the Munich-based brand did not install it in the new 8 Series. Mercedes-Benz, meanwhile, has not made a statement about the future of its V12, but Mercedes-AMG famously stopped producing models equipped with the 463 kW/1 000 Nm M279 powerplant when it launched the S65 Final Edition last year.
Based on our information, the next-generation S-Class (and its Mercedes-Maybach derivatives) will be underpinned by a 48V mild-hybrid electric architecture. Engines will include a 3.0-litre inline-6 turbopetrol and a 2.9-litre inline-6 turbodiesel, but the headlining powerplant will probably be a beefed-up AMG twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 (with electric assistance) – not a V12.
Dual-tone Nappa leather upholstery really "pops" in combination with the violet interior lighting.
The S600 sedan, coupe and cabriolet and Mercedes-Maybach S650 remain the only V12-engined Benzes on sale today, but they won’t be available for much longer. If you are one of the lucky few (15, in North America only) to procure the S650 Maybach Night Edition, you will – in all likelihood – have the privilege of owning the last V12-engined Benz to be officially released.
Powered by the aforementioned handcrafted 6.0-litre bi-turbo V12 engine producing 463 kW and 1 000 Nm, the long-wheelbase Night Edition is festooned in distinctive black and carbon-fibre elements and, if you are in a hurry to get somewhere, whisk you from 0 to 100 kph in 4.6 sec. If you are at all concerned with its average fuel consumption, this is clearly not the car for you.
Lashings of carbon-fibre trim combine nicely with the ebony/piano black trim and metallic switchgear.
Its key exterior accoutrements include a Maybach (as opposed to a standard S-Class) grille featuring the brand’s lettering, “smoked” 20-inch forged wheels and a carbon-fibre rear spoiler, but the Obsidian Black sedan’s lavishly-appointed and -styled interior is the starring attraction.
In addition to the S650 standard specification, which includes the LED intelligent-light system with ultra-wide-beam headlamps and adaptive high-beam assist, Magic Body Control, Airmatic adaptive air suspension, a head-up display, driver-assistance package, night-view assist plus and a Burmester 3D surround sound system, the Night Edition’s interior is finished in exclusive Nappa leather (a combination of Porcelain and Black) matched with interior carbon-fibre trim.
Quilted leather and a Burmester 3D surround sound audio system; nothing less than the best for Benz's flagship S-Class.
Apart from the wood/leather-trimmed steering wheel, leather-covered door sills and seat consoles, extended interior ambient lighting, all 4 seats feature a massage feature, while rear occupants can recline in a pair of executive seats with a 43-degree recline angle and electrically-powered calf rests. It goes without saying that a rear entertainment system is availed.
The package is completed by Night Edition leather floor mats and a black boot mat with contrast edging; Night Edition badges adorn the sedan’s front fenders and interior trim.