Maybach’s version of the GLS is the most expensive and most luxurious member of Mercedes-Benz’s SUV range. The German tuner Brabus unveiled the GLS-based 800 with a massively powerful engine and an even more opulent interior.
The GLS gets a thorough visual makeover with a new, aerodynamically designed carbon-fiber body kit that enhances its appearance and performance. There is a new front splitter and front air intake trim, which gives the SUV a new face and reduces front-end lift at high speeds. Brabus also replaced the shiny chrome with Shadow Gray, which matches the black exterior finish. At the rear, Brabus upgraded the lower valance to include a new center diffuser and cutouts for the Brabus sport exhaust system tailpipes.
Brabus is known for focusing on wringing every last ounce of performance out of Mercedes-Benz engines. It tuned the twin-turbocharged, 4.0-liter V8 in the GLS to 800 horsepower — hence the name — and a whopping 700 pound-feet of torque. The eight cylinder spins the big SUV’s four wheels via a nine-speed automatic transmission and a permanent all-wheel-drive system. Hitting 60 mph from a stop takes 4.5 seconds, which is about half a second quicker than the regular-production GLS, and the top speed is electronically limited to 186 mph.
While the exterior treatment is relatively subtle, the changes are largely limited to blacked-out trim pieces, a body kit that reduces lift at high speeds, and 24-inch Monoblock M Platinum Edition alloy wheels, the interior is anything but. It’s draped in quilted Leonis Orange leather upholstery and it gains carbon fiber accents on the steering wheel, the dashboard, and the center console. Brabus retained Maybach’s individual rear seats; they’re heated, ventilated, power-adjustable, and they’re complemented by matching pillows. Some might not like the idea of feeling like they’re traveling in a pumpkin, and that’s fine. Brabus notes buyers can customize numerous details, including the type of trim and the color of the upholstery.
Pricing for the Brabus 800 hasn’t been revealed, and it will ultimately depend on the options selected.
DESIGN & EXTERIOR
|BRABUS front spoiler carbon, glossy|
|BRABUS add-on front spoiler parts in carbon, glossy|
|BRABUS rear diffusor carbon, glossy|
|BRABUS special glazing of exterior trim parts in Shadow chrome|
|BRABUS Lettering for front grille|
|BRABUS MASTERPIECE Logo for D- column|
|BRABUS MASTERPIECE Logo on electric running boards|
POWER & SOUND
|BRABUS PowerXtra B40S-800
Power: + 178KW / + 243hp; + 220Nm up to 588KW / 800hp;
|BRABUS valve controlled sport exhaust system
incl. ceramic-coated design end panels in black