For certain heads of state, business leaders and perhaps...dictators and wealthy mobsters, Christmas came earlier this year, as the 3-pointed star unveiled the new Mercedes-Maybach S 600 Guard.
The luxurious ride "is the first vehicle to be certified with the highest ballistic protection level VR10 for civilian vehicles", as the manufacturer states, and despite its bodywork and windows that can withstand hardened steel core bullets fired from an assault rifle, it still takes "a very keen eye" to distinguish it from the regular version.
Protective components of special steel have been integrated into the cavities between the outer skin and body structure, while there are special aramid and PE components that help ensure protection and critical points, such as material transitions, to provide comprehensive ballistic protection. The thick windows are fixed and coated with polycarbonate on the inside for splinter protection.
Besides ballistic protection, occupants are safe from explosive devices too, which might be detonated at the side or beneath the vehicle. A unique feature in the civilian special-protection segment is the underbody armoring, which entirely covers the underbody of the occupant compartment. This was tried and tested in the S-Class.
Prospective buyers will still get to enjoy the same executive seats, which have been repositioned further back, ride comfort and luxury on-board features as the regular model. The Mercedes-Maybach S 600 Guard joins the rest of the "Guard" family, which includes G 500 Guard, GLE Guard and S-Class Guard and starts from €470,000 ($522,970 at the current exchange rates), taxes included.