Mercedes-Maybach’s armored S600 is built like a tank, with a price tag to match

Mercedes-Maybach is rolling out an armored version of the S600 Pullman limousine developed at the request of motorists who — for whatever reason — risk their lives every time they go out in public.

Called S600 Pullman Guard, the bulletproof sedan is all but identical to its non-armored counterpart when it’s viewed from the outside. Mercedes explains it left the exterior mostly stock on purpose in order to deter enemies. To keep occupants alive, the S600 is fitted with a special type of steel sandwiched between the body structure and the sheet metal, underbody armor plates, and panels that overlap for comprehensive ballistic protection. Polycarbonate coating on the bulletproof glass ensures the occupants aren’t covered in splinters if the windows are shot at.

Built like a tank, the Guard meets the highest ballistic protection requirements in the VR9 class. In other words, it’s designed to withstand terrorist attacks and protect occupants from gun shots, hand grenades, and a stupendous range of automatic military weapons that average citizens will only ever see in Grand Theft Auto.

The attention to detail is astounding. Notably, Mercedes added electric motors to help occupants close the rear doors, which are much heavier than normal due to the armor, and rear windows that are hydraulically operated. History buffs will remember Mercedes famously used hydraulic windows on the 600 that was built in strictly limited numbers from 1964 to 1981.

With room for four passengers, the rear compartment is as big as it is luxurious, and buyers can work directly with the factory to customize every knob, button, and piece of trim. Additionally, the list of options includes sirens, flashing lights, a two-way radio, an emergency starter battery, and a loudspeaker.

Mercedes-Maybach hasn’t made any mechanical modifications to the S600 Pullman Guard. The engine bay is home to a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 engine that develops 530 horsepower and 612 pound-feet of torque starting at just 1,900 rpm. The company hasn’t revealed what effect the weight added by the armor has on performance, though it points out top speed is electronically limited to 100 mph.

The Mercedes-Maybach S600 Pullman Guard is on sale now, and the first deliveries are scheduled for the second half of next year. Pricing starts at 1.4 million euros, a sum that converts to roughly $1.5 million. That’s a hefty price to pay, but the average armored sedan buyer is more concerned with staying alive than parting with seven figures.


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