Stunning interior in the Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten”
We are thrilled and open the door. Thanks to electrically extendable running boards, the cockpit is easy to board. Brabus does a great job in the interior. Almost every corner, no matter how small, is lined with the finest quilted leather, the rest is covered with trim parts made of carbon and red anodized aluminum.
After pressing the start button, we get a fright: the cold start roar is downright animalistic! With a light shiver on our backs and a bassy bubbling we roll off.
First it’s on country roads, to get used to it. Because that’s what it takes at a width of 2.1 meters and a height of around 2.3 meters. What feels like three floors above the other road users, estimating the distances is not easy. In “Comfort” mode, the chassis also rocks quite well, the steering is quite spongy thanks to the 325/55 tires. This is what truck driving should feel like.
What constantly swims with you is the knowledge that you have 900 hp in front of you. So we tap the accelerator lightly and are in no way prepared for what the XLP pulls off.
The transmission shifts down, the background noise increases, the entire body rears up, and the three-ton truck explodes forward like an elephant shot from a catapult. Brabus states 4.4 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h, but even at half throttle it feels faster.
Fear rules over 160 km/h
140 km/h turned out to be the optimal cruising speed. You slouch in the soft leather, the wind noise is restrained. Intermediate sprints are a lot of fun thanks to the sheer power and the fat sound including the loud wastegate hiss, and we catch ourselves wanting less power.
The city center is not his territory at all
The pick-up was actually just as little built for the motorway as it was for the city, where we are going now. On the direct route to downtown Hamburg. Where you quickly get used to the dimensions on country roads and motorways, you really become aware of the monstrosity of this vehicle.
Streets that are normally easy to drive on are mutating into narrow alleys. It feels like trying to stuff an anchor line through the eye of a needle. Every road is blocked, and there is always the fear that the outrageously expensive carbon fenders will offend someone.
Speaking of offending, we have never received so many rude gestures from cyclists with any test car. But never so many thumbs up, smartphones drawn, incredulous looks, crowds of people in parking lots.
Average consumption well over 20 liters
You can understand both sides. But we want to say this much: when cruising outside of the city in a relaxed manner, the Brabus soon feels much more normal than it first appears. After a short period of getting used to it, you will be really relaxed when you drive across country and on the motorway.
Rationally speaking, an average consumption of around 25 liters, the absurdly high price and the cabin and loading area, which are astonishingly small in comparison to the dimensions, are of course anything but good reasons to buy the Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten”. And we couldn’t test the only real purpose in Hamburg due to the lack of dunes and steep terrain. But even so, we learned two things: This car is easier to handle than it is, but no one needs it. And that’s what makes it so fascinating.