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Mercedes relaunches premium Maybach in India

NEW DELHI, Feb 1, 2011 – German carmaker Mercedes Benz reintroduced its hyper-luxury Maybach car in India on Tuesday, pitching it at the country\’s growing number of super-rich.

The car, which can touch speeds of 275 kilometres (170 miles) an hour, will be priced at up to 51 million rupees ($1.1 million).

"There are customers out there who can afford the unparalleled luxury of this car," said Mercedes Benz India chief executive Peter Honegg at the launch, saying the company was aiming its cars at those who can afford private jets.

Last year, India\’s fast-growing economy minted 17 new billionaires, driving the total to a record 69, according to a Forbes rich list.

The company, part of Daimler AG, which last year sold 200 Maybachs worldwide, launched two models of the individually customised car — the Maybach 57 S and 62.

Honegg gave no car sales targets for India but said Mercedes sells around 20 Maybachs a year in neighbouring emerging market giant China.

Mercedes launched the Maybach initially in India in 2004 but Honegg said it "may have been too early. Now it is time for a second push."

BMW\’s Rolls-Royce and Volkswagen AG\’s Bentley are already on sale in India.

With developed markets saturated, global auto giants are concentrating on emerging markets such as India to boost sales.

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