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Jonesing for a Maybach

Old 01-24-2007, 07:44 PM
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Default Jonesing for a Maybach

That sure is expensive just to prove you can put big tires on a car. Top end is high, but at 6000 lbs., I believe the Challenger
has superior acceleration.

Jonesing for a Maybach
With Quincy Jones riding shotgun, Fortune's Sue Callaway straps in - and takes the sinister, sexy, $8 million Maybach Exelero for a spin.


By Sue Callaway, Fortune
January 24 2007: 10:28 AM EST


(Fortune Magazine) -- "Sue! SLOW DOWN!" Quincy Jones screamed, his normally baritone, saxophone-esque voice jumping into Aretha terrain, his body straining against all six racing belts holding him in the seat. In fairness, the Maybach Exelero's salacious side exhaust pipes were bellowing so loudly he had to lean on his own set of pipes just to be heard. I acquiesced, backing the throttle off from snarl to purr. Quincy shot me one of his famous looks. "You are a wild woman! I like that."

And I like firsts (and onlys) - for instance, driving with a legend. So to celebrate my official return to Fortune after a seven-year hiatus, I achieved a double first-and-only: driving with Quincy in the Exelero, an $8 million one-off collaboration between Mercedes' ultra-luxury division, Maybach, and German tire manufacturer Fulda (with support from private collector René Staud, who owns the car).

Above all, this supersized two-seater is unique; no marketing exec argued that buyers wanted a 19-foot-long, 6,000-pound coupe with 23-inch wheels and gas mileage of 2.5 mpg at full throttle. In fact, the Exelero - bless its unapologetically over-the-top heart - is the antithesis, the car that didn't need to be. The beast was built to develop Fulda's ultra-low-profile Exelero tires and break a speed record for a car of its proportions and mass, which it did: 218 mph, or 351 kilometers per hour.

Jones is a similarly record-breaking (and -making) heavyweight, boasting a glittering comet tail of achievements, including the most Grammy nominations of all time (79). He has worked with everybody from Duke Ellington to Michael Jackson - and has an honorary Oscar, 27 Grammys, an Emmy and a French Légion d'Honneur medal crowding his proverbial mantel. His current projects seem endless: producing multiple films and CDs, global philanthropic work and consulting for the Beijing Olympics with Spielberg. At 73, the man moves as fast as ... well, a Maybach Exelero, actually.

As Quincy recovered from our one-block adrenaline burst, I gunned all 700 horsepower once more. Even with the pedal to the metal, the Exelero's sheer bulk caused a multisecond lag from the twin-turbo-charged V12's wind-up to actual launch. Quincy yelped again, then tried to be nonchalant. "McQueen used to scare me too - doing 90 around Mulholland," he remembered.

I suddenly backed all the way off, the Exelero's power plant burbling raucously; if Darth Vader ever laughed, this is what it would sound like. I wanted to hear the great Mr. Jones explain why he had never actually driven. "When I was 14, I was a passenger in a terrible accident," he said. "After that, it never held any appeal. But this car makes me wish I could drive - it's a high-powered instrument. There's nothing like greatness, honey - please! I recognize it." Hey, I was just happy to be chauffeuring it.

As we paraded and prowled the boulevards of Beverly Hills (listening to his 1989 bebop/hip-hop fusion CD "Back on the Block"), carload after carload of youthful admirers pulled up, exclaiming over the extreme sheet metal - and Quincy. One guy was so in awe of the car he fumbled - and took a picture of his own torso. Another bystander asked, "Are you ... Miss Maybach?" (Note to manufacturers: If you want to capture the sub-twentysomething buyer, consider outrageous lines and land-yacht proportions. Putting a musical genius inside is optional - but helpful.)

As we talked, the intense gas fumes spewing from the pipes that exit through the rocker panels made for an
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Old 02-10-2007, 10:02 AM
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Default RE: Jonesing for a Maybach

My dad has one. The car kinda suks, he has the 2003 Maybach 57. I drive it when I go to visit him in Cali mainly because it has plenty of room for me, the wife and two kids ages 6 and 11. We do alot of long dist crusing btw Rancho Santa Fe and La Quinta, near Palm Springs. It is a short 2 hr drive or so and is the perfect vehicle for this. We also have a 06 Bently Cont GT for around town and F 360 F1 vert for cruzing La Jolla.

His fav ride by far is is 07 Lexus 460 though. The Maybach is for sale for those interested.
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