Have you ever driven down the street and noticed a Mercedes sedan or SUV that looks different than the rest? Perhaps it had an aggressive body kit, giant wheels, and a loud exhaust. Chances are you just witnessed a Brabus tuned vehicle in the wild. But where exactly are these exotic, high-performance Mercedes models built and modified?
Brabus customizes and tunes Mercedes Benz vehicles at their headquarters and manufacturing facility in Bottrop, Germany. Receiving stock models direct from Mercedes, Brabus then outfits them with custom-built parts, personalized luxury features, and performance upgrades that enhance each vehicle’s capabilities and style.
In this article, we’ll explore Brabus’ facilities and processes to take you through where and how they transform standard Mercedes Benz models into extraordinary bespoke creations. You’ll learn about:
- Brabus’ headquarters, manufacturing, and R&D capabilities
- The customization and build process for Brabus vehicles
- The most popular Mercedes models tuned by Brabus
- Why customers choose Brabus over conventional Mercedes options
Plus more on this fascinating German Mercedes tuning company that has made a name for itself crafting exclusive high-end vehicles for over 40 years.
Table of Contents
An Introduction to Brabus
Founded in 1977 and headquartered in Bottrop, Germany, Brabus specializes in tuning, customizing, and manufacturing parts for Mercedes Benz vehicles. What started as a small shop swapping engines and tweaking performance has grown into a globally recognized company producing complete vehicles.
While Mercedes and AMG handle performance and luxury trims from the factory, Brabus takes things further. They offer performance upgrades, styling modifications, and luxury options not found even on top Mercedes models. Brabus receives new vehicles direct from the Mercedes factory and gets to work outfitting them with custom components.
Beyond just Mercedes, Brabus has also worked their magic on brands like Maybach, Smart, and even Tesla over the years. However, Mercedes remains their primary focus.
For owners looking to build a bespoke Mercedes closely aligned with their preferences, Brabus represents the pinnacle. Their creations showcase fine craftsmanship with power and style.
Brabus Headquarters and Manufacturing Facility
Brabus is headquartered in a state-of-the-art 370,000+ square foot facility located in Bottrop, Germany. This enormous space dedicated to Mercedes tuning includes:
- Manufacturing and production of custom Brabus components like widebody kits, wheels, exhausts, and interior elements.
- Research and development division that pushes the boundaries of Mercedes performance.
- Service and maintenance areas for repairs, oil changes, and inspections.
- Storage for parts inventory, vehicles awaiting upgrades, and the Brabus classics collection.
- Administrative offices for the 900+ employees that enable Brabus to function.
Additionally, the headquarters contains the Brabus Motorenmanufaktur engine manufacturing workshop. This is where Brabus crafts bespoke engines with extraordinary power outputs. Using bases like the Mercedes M177 4.0L twin-turbo V8, Brabus engineers coax out 900 to 1,200 horsepower in variants like the “Rocket” engine.
The Brabus facility creates a vertically integrated operation. Everything from R&D prototyping to manufacturing custom components to building complete vehicles takes place in one massive, dedicated complex custom tailored to Mercedes vehicles.
Where Does Brabus Actually Build Vehicles?
An important distinction between Brabus and a traditional car manufacturer is that Brabus does not actually assemble entire vehicles from the ground up.
The initial construction of the chassis, body, drivetrain, and underlying foundation of Brabus vehicles takes place on the Mercedes assembly lines alongside standard models.
Brabus receives new Mercedes vehicles in base trim levels direct from the factory. Only then does the transformation into Brabus creations occur.
This process allows Brabus to focus on their specialty–customization and performance upgrades. Without having to build full vehicles from scratch, they can devote resources to designing, testing, and manufacturing specialized components that upgrade the stock Mercedes elements.
Once the new Mercedes models arrive at Brabus HQ in Germany, the customization process involves:
- Removing stock Mercedes parts like body panels, wheels, exhausts, etc.
- Installing Brabus manufactured components including widebody kits, performance wheels and tires, intake and exhaust systems tuned for power gains.
- Adding luxury cabin elements like custom leather, carbon fiber trim, floor mats, and more.
- Tuning the engine control unit and making computer modifications to increase horsepower and torque.
- Testing and quality control to ensure optimal performance and safety is retained.
- Dyno runs, test drives, and break-in periods for vehicles with heavy modifications.
The result is a thoroughly transformed vehicle imprinted with Brabus’ signature touches. It combines the quality and engineering of a stock Mercedes with the exclusivity and performance of Brabus’ upgrades.
Popular Models Tuned by Brabus
Brabus has customized nearly the full Mercedes lineup over the decades. Today, some of their most popular projects include:
- Mercedes G-Class: The boxy, rugged G-Wagen has long been a tuning favorite. Brabus offers G-Classes with power up to 900HP, lowered sport suspensions, and exclusive “Brabus Adventure” overlanding packages.
- Mercedes S-Class: As Mercedes’ flagship sedan, the S-Class receives extravagant treatment from Brabus like a 2-tone “Brabus Masterpiece” interior with reclining rear seats. Exclusive limited-run sedans output 700HP+.
- Mercedes GLS: The GLS SUV combines luxury with 3 rows of seating. Brabus editions add carbon fiber exterior elements and V12 Biturbo engines for shocking performance.
- Mercedes CLS: The CLS receives aggressive Brabus body kits and upgraded wheel/tire packages that transform the coupe-like sedan.
- Mercedes G-Class 6×6: Brabus converted the wild Mercedes 6×6 pickup into a 700HP+ beast with even more imposing looks. Only a handful were produced.
- Mercedes-Maybach: Brabus gives the ultra-lux Maybach more aggressive styling and exclusive “Brabus Dream” cabins dripping with opulence.
And many more! Brabus spares no Mercedes nameplate from receiving their special touch, crafting builds from simple A-Class compacts to the mythic Mercedes SL Pagoda.
Why Choose Brabus Over Mercedes?
Given the high base prices of models like the Mercedes S-Class, you may wonder why customers choose even more expensive Brabus equivalents. Here are some of the key reasons:
- Exclusivity: Most Brabus vehicles are limited-production special editions not found at your average Mercedes dealer. You’re unlikely to see many others like yours on the road.
- Customization: Every aspect from powertrain to upholstery can be tailored to precisely match customer wishes during building.
- Luxury: Brabus uses higher end leathers, woods, metals, and other materials to exceed the luxury of any Mercedes model off the showroom floor.
- Performance: Massive power upgrades transform sedate Mercedes sedans into vehicles that outpace exotic supercars. Brabus unlocks performance Mercedes would never offer directly.
- Styling: From exposed carbon fiber to aggressive aerodynamic elements, Brabus styling tweaks make already handsome Mercedes models look extraordinary.
In short, for customers seeking a bespoke Mercedes that surpasses even AMG’s capabilities, Brabus delivers an intoxicating formula of personalization, luxury, and performance.
Brabus represents the pinnacle of Mercedes tuning and customization. Operating out of their headquarters in Bottrop Germany, Brabus receives new Mercedes models direct from the factory and gets to work imbuing them with upgraded Brabus-built components.
Everything from powertrain to exterior to interior can be customized during the build process to create exclusive high-end vehicles. Brabus coaxes more performance from Mercedes models while retaining the quality and engineering that makes the base cars so strong.
So for those special Mercedes sedans, SUVs, and wagons augmented with carbon fiber additions, giant wheels, and quad exhaust tips, you can bet Brabus is behind their creation. Their one-of-a-kind vehicles showcase what Mercedes models are truly capable of in the hands of master craftsmen.