View Full Version : Design Analysis: Maybach Exelero

06-29-2005, 02:24 PM
hey guys. i've always wondered why this section's name was "Car Design Analysis and Official Sketches" when really there's only the "Official Sketches" part present. so i thought i'd start a new sort of "article," if you will. a car design analysis on a different car every so often, somewhat akin to Robert Cumberford's column in Automobile magazine. now, these analysiseses are opinion, and maybe they could spark some more debate or opinion or analysis as replies to the thread of whatever car i decided to analyze for the time being. i thought it might be nice. anyway, here goes.<p>Design-wise, its always hard to start up a new company: theres no heritage to build upon, look back to, or to (in some very rare cases) copy. Such is the case with Mercedes Maybach: because there was no real Maybach vehicle designers could build upon, our modern Maybach 57 and 62 end up being more like overgrown, overstyled and redone Mercedes S-Classes with a couple of tacky details slapped on.<p>So whats a company to do when theyre tackled with the job of designing a new sports car? Unfortunately, they must go back to the only heritage they have thus far: the Maybach sedans and their pretentious grilles. The front view of the Exelero is marred by this chrome snout, but not much else flows very well either. From the triangular headlamps to the sides character lines to the greenhouse, the front three-quarter view is chunky and lacking in grace. Curiously, the Exelero starts looking better from the back, and I guess thats where Maybach was intending most of the cars viewers to see it from anyway, with a top speed of 350 km/h.<p> <B>front</B> <br><IMG SRC="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v143/knihc2008/maybach_download_1b.jpg" BORDER="0"><br>a) The direct front is flat and marred by huge, gaping holes which are probably necessary for cooling. However, there are more delicate ways of handling this other than cutting two holes in a flat inclined surface. It makes the front look like a giant shovel, or a really fast snow-plower.<br>b) This ostentatious grille doesnt help too much either. Looks like one of those Volkswagen Bugs with the Rolls Royce grille planted on the front: looks totally fake and totally out of line with the super sports car that the Exelero is supposed to be.<br>c) Celica headlamps on a Maybach. Nuff said.<br>d) Nice, tapering and relatively thin A-pillar gives a reasonably graceful touch to an otherwise sharp, jagged and harsh car.<br>e) These ridiculously small rearview mirrors are no good for any sort of rearview monitoring, but I guess it doesnt matter if you car can go 350 km/h. Plus, they look extremely fragile, mounted on two chopsticks.<br>f) The greenhouse is probably one of the biggest problems, though its shape is perhaps due to hours in the wind tunnel. The car does not have a distinct cab forward or cab backward stance due to this symmetrical-looking greenhouse arch with a ridiculously long rear window, making the Exelero not look like as if its moving forward, but just sort of standing plain.<br>g) Are two lines really necessary here? The inner line does not even work to break up the slab sides, ending before the door.<br>h) The designers choice to use SLR wheels is both entertaining and distracting. The rounded turbine look does not match with the cars sharp edges and flat planes. Plus, theyre obviously Mercedes wheels, not Maybach wheels, which gives the car an afterthought-ish feel to it.<p> <B>rear</B> <br><IMG SRC="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v143/knihc2008/maybach_download_5b.jpg" BORDER="0"><br>a) Easily my favorite part of the car. The front wasnt long, blocky and shovel-ish enough to look ugly from the back too, where this front quarter panel drops down to create a strong and powerful looking frontal section, with an interesting lip spoiler jutting out and giving definition to the bottom.<br>b) Accented by a beautifully defined front fender flare into which the side character line blends into. Sublime.<br>c) Why? Reminds me of them big HEMI badges on Chryslers. The engine is no more special than the ones powering the regular Maybachs.<br>d) Again, the unfortunate long rear window, though the rear view is helped by the boattail back, which pulls the greenhouse rearward, creating an ever-so-slight cab backward look.<br>e) What were they thinking with these rear lamps? They look really cheap and like afterthoughts, Altezza lamps gone really, really bad, like those on pickup trucks, except two of them put together.<br>f) These chrome strips are very poorly done, though they do give interest and add some bright to a very glum, black car. Constant-section straight pieces with no real function, they start and end abruptly with no continuity.<br>g) Extraordinarily plain rear end with a less-than-graceful boat tail. Even the Crossfire gets it better.<p>so that's it. i hope you guys enjoyed it. any suggestions are welcome too.

06-29-2005, 07:41 PM
I applaud your efforts, but it seems more like flaming the car than analyzing it. <p>I agree with most of it, though. To me this car is very random, in a lot of ways. I have a feeling the budget wasn't as large as usual, though, as I believe it was commissioned by a private supplier.

06-29-2005, 08:02 PM
i guess it might be flaming. i just point out things i see, and it might be flaming because most of the things i see are bad (you agree!) and it's not all flaming (points to the front fender flares, etc). i just thought it might make for good discussion over design too.<p>next time i'll chose something i like. or somethign that's more controversial.

06-29-2005, 08:25 PM
<IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://images.zeroforum.com/smile/emwink.gif" BORDER="0"> Just messin with ya bro, do whatcha want.

07-03-2005, 09:17 AM
when you say that the wing mirrors are ridiculously smal, you have to remember that this is a concept, and if this does go into production it will have much larger mirrors

07-06-2005, 10:04 AM
good design analysis, and i agree with most of it. it isn't a very well-resolved design, and i don't particularly like it.

07-11-2005, 02:06 PM
All in all, the design is a little thrown together... I'll give you that much. But it's got more damn road presence than the friggin' Batmobile. And those two parallel character lines on the side are just.... WOW.

07-12-2005, 10:15 PM
Keep in mind fellas that this was NOT designed by Mercedes. It was designed by students overseen by Mercedes designers with aerodynamics as the priority, not beauty. It was built as a tire show/test vehicle, not as an indicator of a future Maybach. As per the wheels; you need to look closer because they are NOT SLR wheels. (the SLR has nasty 10 spoke-or-something-like-that, turbines)

07-13-2005, 07:24 AM
I believe he was referring to the concept:<br><IMG SRC="http://members.tripod.com/alexhlau/slr2.jpg" BORDER="0">