Sparesbox Blog

Mercedes-Benz Unveils Tribute to Louis Vuitton Designer

By Shane O’Sullivan

Fri Dec 03 2021

Beloved German brand Mercedes-Benz has unveiled a new vehicle in tribute to a Louis Vuitton designer. The vehicle itself was initially designed by the designer and following his recent death, was modified to serve as a memorial.

Designed by Virgil Abloh of Louis Vuitton in collaboration with Daimler chief design officer Gorden Wagener, Mercedes-Benz has revealed a 2-seater battery electric off-road coupe show car under the name ‘Project Maybach.’

According to Joshua S. Hill over on The Driven, the collaboration was an attempt at using the luxury identity with, as the company itself notes, “a new design language” that “pushed the boundaries of function, style and collaborative creativity.”

Furthermore, the company explained that Project Maybach was “inspired by the great outdoors and recontextualizing a traditionally urban brand within a distinctly off-road environment.” Project Maybach has large vehicles for off-road use, with distinctive attachments and Gran Turismo proportions.

Abloh himself was a trailblazer in the black community, having founded the design company Off-White and headed the menswear division at Louis Vuitton. The designer was a first-generation Ghanaian American. He sadly passed away on Sunday following a two-year battle with cardiac angiosarcoma.

This wasn’t the first project Abloh had worked on. He previously collaborated with Mercedes-Benz back in 2020, designing Project Gelandewagen, based on the iconic G-class wagon. Sadly, Abloh won’t be here to see the release of Project Maybach, but his legacy will certainly live on. 

Project Maybach has numerous features in line - including all-terrain tires, an exterior roll cage, metal skid plates (in front and rear), body cladding with exposed rivets over the wheel wells in addition to a multitude of headlights and roof lights to illuminate the area around the vehicle.

At the time of writing, it is unclear as to whether Mercedes-Benz will turn Project Maybach into a production car, with the company stating that the “show car exemplifies the possibilities of future design and is the result of an ongoing cooperation with the polymath artist, architect, creative director, fashion designer and philanthropist.”

With all that said, it is certain that Abloh left behind a legacy that far surpasses Project Maybach and if the project ever proceeds, it will be one to keep an eye on.