Webasto AG is responsible for producing some of the more luxurious interior parts for the Maybach Zeppelin, such as its electro-transparent panoramic roof. Occupants can allow the sun to shine clearly through or make the roof opaque with the touch of a button. The structure spans the roof liner above the rear passengers and features an opaque liquid crystal membrane of conductive polymer plastic. When an alternating current is applied to it, the crystals in the plastic membrane are arranged in such a way that the glass becomes transparent and allows daylight into the rear of the vehicle. Webasto, of Germany, also supplies an auxiliary parking heater to maintain an ambient temperature inside the vehicle.
Huf Huelsbeck and Fuerst GmbH & Co. KG provide a number of items for the luxury vehicle, such as the keyless-go system that allows the driver to unlock and start the vehicle without having to use the ignition lock. The company also supplies closures for the interior compartments and a rear-view camera in the tailgate.
All Maybach vehicles are propelled by the same V-12 bi-turbo engine. The standard versions have 5.5-liter displacement and 550hp, while the more agile S versions boast 612hp out of a 6.0-liter engine, with immense torque of nominally 900/1000 Newton meters. These results are achieved using pistons, valves oil and fuel filters from Mahle GmbH and cylinder head gaskets and turbo flange gaskets from Dana Holding Corp.
The Maybach brand Daimler AG’s rival to BMW AG’s Rolls-Royce and Volkswagen AG’s Bentley brands. Maybach’s one product is produced in Sindelfingen, Germany.
The economic crisis meant that sales took a significant downturn and cast serious doubt on Maybach’s future as a mere 157 sold in 2010 compared with 317 in 2008. However, IHS Automotive forecasts a recovery starting this year causing the automaker to return to pre-crash sales levels by around 2014, when a new model is expected to debut.
There are currently four variants of the Zeppelin, starting with the Maybach 57, which starts at 340,900 euros excluding VAT, and rising to the top-of-the-range Maybach 62 S with a price tag of 458,200 euros before sales tax.