The new luxury G650

Berlin (dpa) - Maybach has taken a can opener to the boxy G-Class off-roader from Mercedes-Benz to create a landaulet with a roof that can be partially opened to provide a fresh-air experience for those in the back.

The G650 Landaulet from the upmarket sub-brand is due for its world debut next month and will appear at the 2017 Geneva auto show (March 9-19). The car is designed to be chauffeur-driven and will be limited to 99 examples. Sales will start in Autumn 2017.

"With the Mercedes-Maybach G-Class Landaulet, we are now extending the Mercedes-Maybach portfolio to include the world's most iconic and prestigious off-roader," said the Stuttgart maker.

The Landaulet comes with the range-topping V12 engine turning out some 630 horsepower. There are portal axles for ample ground clearance, an electric fabric top and exclusive equipment in the rear compartment.

The safari-style rear section under the soft-top features two sumptuous seats from the S-Class limousine right down to their celebrated hot stone massage programmes.

Passengers are kept apart from the driver by a push-button-controlled partition glass which can be tinted instantly for extra privacy.

Economy is not a strong point of the G650, which is said to cope with fast roads and boulder-strewn tracks with equal aplomb.

Combined fuel consumption is given as 17 litres per 100 kilometres, with combined C02 emissions at 397g/km.

The term landaulet goes back to the era of horse-drawn carriages and modern interpretations have usually been made for heads of state and other dignitaries

Among the most exclusive of the type were the Mercedes-Benz 300 d Landaulet made from 1960, the later 600 Pullman Landaulet and the Maybach Landaulet produced from 2008. It had a sliding roof over the rear compartment.