Mercedes-Maybach launches in China before the U.S.

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Mercedes continues to favor China over more traditional markets like the US. Chinese buyers will get the new Mercedes-Maybach S-Class first, a bold decision which emphasizes the growing significance of the local audience.

The new Mercedes-Maybach will have a starting price of CNY1.3 million or roughly $229,000 at today’s exchange rates. In its base guise, the China-only S400, Mercedes-Maybach gets a new six-cylinder variant. The top-of-the range S600 variant will command CNY2.88 million or $462,000.

As tradition dictates, the above mentioned price tags translate into a hefty price difference compared to what US customers have to pay for the cheapest Mercedes-Maybach S600, $189,350 to be more precise.

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Specifically designed to be chauffeur-driven, Mercedes-Maybach S-Class benefits from an increase of 200 mm for both its overall length (5.453 mm) and wheelbase (3.365 mm) by comparison with the long wheelbase S-Class.

Fortunately, the extensive standard equipment list eclipses the price tag issue. Longer body aside, clients get a Driver Assistance Package (Intelligent Drive), MAGIC BODY CONTROL, Night View Assist PLUS, a Warmth and Comfort Package with a heated windshield, head-up display, LED Intelligent Lighting System, Burmester high-end 3D surround sound system, Executive Rear Seat package, Rear Seat Entertainment System and the Air Balance package.

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The Mercedes-Maybach S600 comes with the familiar V12 bi-turbo 6.0-liter engine delivering 530 hp and 830 Nm, while the S400 gets a 3-liter biturbo V6 with 330 HP and 354 lb-ft (480 Nm) of torque.

In Europe, the commercial debut of the new Mercedes-Maybach S-Class is scheduled for February 2015. In Germany, prices for the Mercedes-Maybach start at 134,053.50 euros for the S500 version and 187,841.50 euros for the S600 model.