- Wilhelm Maybach, the "king of the design engineers"
Designed with meticulous attention to detail, built in a state-of-the-art manufacturing factory and kitted out with 21st-century automotive technology, the Maybach 57, Maybach 62 and Maybach 57 S are writing the next chapter in the history of the renowned Maybach cars of the 1920s and 30s, which stood alongside Mercedes-Benz models as some of the finest examples of automotive excellence worldwide.
The Mercedes-Benz and Maybach automotive brands have much in common besides a long and distinguished tradition. Wilhelm Maybach (1846-1929), a long-time associate of Gottlieb Daimler (1834-1900), held the post of technical director at Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG) and was the brains behind the construction of the first Mercedes, the template for all modern-day passenger cars, in 1901. For this reason, Maybach was much admired and known as the "king of the design engineers".
In 1907 Wilhelm Maybach - who took his place in the European Automotive Hall of Fame in Geneva in March 2004 - left DMG, joining forces with his son Karl in 1909 to build powerful engines for the airships produced by Graf Ferdinand von Zeppelin. In the years after 1919 Karl Maybach (1879-1960) - by then based in Friedrichshafen on the shores of Lake Constance - made quite a name for himself through the development and construction of exclusive and technically flawless luxury cars. By 1941, Karl Maybach had built around 1800 of these high-class vehicles, with the bodies painstakingly designed and equipped by specialist firms according to the customers' specifications.
The flagship Maybach model was the DS 8 “Zeppelin” of 1931. At some 5.5 metres in length, the “Zeppelin” ranked as one of the most prestigious German cars of its time “a car of the greatest elegance and power which you would give your last wish to own,” as a Maybach brochure put it.