Ghost Buster

Maybach's Landaulet hits US shores this summer. Who you gonna call to get seen in one?

In today’s era of high-value hip-hop, exclusivity fosters—and almost guarantees—fame. Be it red-bottomed shoes to rose-hued bubbly, your product, no matter how simple or complex, is really only an exuberant price tag away from countless name-drops. Maybach, Mercedes Benz’ ultra-luxury division, ain’t no exception. Thrust into the limelight from relative obscurity, the coachbuilder’s 62 sits synonymous with boss-level status yet, all the while, has remained overshadowed by a ghostly competitor. But reigns of power, no matter how respected, all have one thing in common: They end. Fittingly in an election year, Maybach’s fast-tracked concept, the Landaulet, has hit production. Could a regime change finally be imminent?

Though late to the drop-top game behind Rolls-Royce and Bentley, the 62-based Landaulet has no doubt been a trick up Maybach’s sleeve for some time, as its unique spin on open-air luxury defies comparison to anything else on the market. As the 16-second roll-back roof retracts, passengers are spoiled by a virtual suite on wheels. Sumptuous white leather envelops reclining seats and extends to the entire cabin—which also houses a full entertainment system and champagne cooler. Once the bottle poppin’ starts, there’s really no need to pace yourself, ’cause despite the monstrous 612hp twin-turbo V12 under the hood, this ain’t a car you drive yourself. Getting behind the wheel would be uncivilized—and if you can’t afford a chauffer, it’s remarkable you got by the $1.35 million sticker.

That’s right, with a seven-figure MSRP and expected production run of only 20 units, it’ll be interesting to see who, if anybody, actually gets spotted in the Landaulet. But at levels like that, hey, you even get points for borrowing the thing.