Virgil Abloh
Virgil Abloh
Virgil Abloh

Maybach a tribute to Virgil

Riley Riley

Project Maybach pays tribute to fashion designer and entrepreneur Virgil Abloh.

Abloh, 41, died on November 28 after a long battle with cancer.

A ‘humble’ contribution to Virgil’s vast legacy, the Mercedes-Maybach show car exemplifies the possibilities of future design.

It is the result of on-going co-operation with the polymath artist, architect, creative director, fashion designer and philanthropist; driven by a shared passion to enrich the conversation around luxury design.

A design unlike anything that has been developed by Mercedes-Benz, every element of Project Maybach has been built from scratch.

Abloh, collaboratively with Gorden Wagener, interpreted Mercedes-Maybach’s luxury identity with a new design language, pushing the boundaries of function, style, and collaborative creativity. 

Inspired by the great outdoors and recontextualizing a traditionally urban brand within a distinctly off-road environment, the two-seater, battery-electric off-road coupé combines huge Gran Turismo proportions, large off-road wheels and distinctive attachments. 

Key for both Abloh and Wagener was a responsible vision of future design.  

Complete creative freedom, untethered by production requirements, enabled design teams to conceptualise what the future of electric travel could look like.

Under the transparent surface of the show cars front hood for example are solar cells that increase the imagined range of Project Maybach.

Never afraid to spark conversation through provocative design, the concept channels Abloh’s passion to challenge the status quo and re-write the rulebook of aspirational design.  

The X-Factor nature of Project Maybach results not only from its breathtaking size – almost six meters long – and characteristics, but above all from its unique contrasts; most notably through how naturally authentic Mercedes-Maybach design elements are harmoniously combined with a new Outdoor Adventure design motif.  

The power of Abloh’s work is not only from the product design, but also the exploratory conversations that his work ignited.  

While the Project Maybach show car was inspired by how one could explore nature within a uniquely luxury context with Maybach, the Mercedes-Benz teams thank Virgil Abloh for the inspiration to explore every day the power of cross-industry dialogue to imagine a better, more inclusive future.    


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