Virgil Abloh teams up with Mercedes-Benz for electric Maybach project
Virgil Abloh, the multi-talented designer behind the Off-White brand, is building on the creative partnership he began with luxury car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz last year. This time round, the designer is turning his attention to the Mercedes-Maybach brand, for which he will create an electric show car in collaboration with Mercedes-Benz chief design officer Gorden Wagener.
Set to be unveiled during Art Basel Miami Beach, on December 1, 2021, the show car is intended to be “unlike anything previously seen from Mercedes-Benz,” demonstrating the possibilities presented by design when it “is untethered by existing blueprints, or production specifications.”
The collaborative initiative, dubbed “Project Maybach,” coincides with the centenary of the launch of the first Maybach W 3. The resulting show car is meant to serve as an emblem of a new era of discovery for the Mercedes-Maybach brand, which has come to signify the ultimate in automotive luxury.
“The Maybach legacy celebrates exploration, pushing creativity to new places, living outside of the status quo,” explained Abloh in a release. “In this next phase we’re embracing these ideals and bringing the Mercedes-Maybach heritage into the future, inviting the next generation to join in revering this icon.”
Abloh, who as well as leading his own Off-White brand, has served as men’s artistic director at Louis Vuitton since 2018, already worked his magic on the iconic Mercedes-Benz G Class last year. Now, the designer, who has a background in civil engineering and architecture, has been tasked with marrying his unique fashion sensibility with Wagener’s deep understanding of luxury car design in order to bring the Mercedes-Maybach brand to the forefront of the cultural conversation.
“With Project Maybach we define the next level of luxury,” said Wagener. “After 100 years, we transform the brand into a luxury electric future. Together with Virgil, we are writing a new rule book for Mercedes-Maybach.”
Abloh’s ongoing collaboration with Mercedes-Benz continues a rich tradition of creative partnerships between fashion and luxury automotive companies that has recently produced link-ups between the likes of Bugatti and Hermès, BMW and Kith, and Lamborghini and Supreme.
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