Mercedes denied Bill Gates a customized car for bizarre reason, so he got a Volvo instead

  • Bill Gates once placed a request for a customized one-off Mercedes
  • He wanted a specific model, with a specific feature
  • Mercedes said no for a reason that’s strange but also logical

Published on May 20, 2024 at 12:13 PM (UTC+4)
by Alessandro Renesis

Last updated on May 22, 2024 at 12:07 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Tom Wood

Mercedes once passed up the opportunity to create a bespoke one-off car for Bill Gates.

The reason why the automaker declined this opportunity is a little strange.

But – to be fair – it is also quite understandable at the same time.

READ MORE: Bill Gates’ billionaire success comes from ‘hidden skill’

Even though this happened decades ago, it has only surfaced now, after Terry Haigh – former manager of the Mercedes-Benz Bellevue showroom in the state of Washington – shared the story in an interview with VinWIKI, which was then reposted by LuxuryLaunches.

According to Mr Haigh, Bill Gates had been a loyal customer for years, having reportedly bought several cars from Mercedes-Benz Bellevue.

One of Gates’ representatives once showed up with an unusual request.

He told the showroom that Bill Gates wanted to buy a specific station wagon, but he wanted it to be bulletproof.

It’s certainly not a shocking request per se.

After all, if there’s one thing we know for sure is just how much the world’s top CEOs spend on personal security.

The problem was Mercedes didn’t have a bulletproof station wagon in its line-up.

And so that meant this particular request would have to be accommodated as personal one-off for Bill Gates.

So, the showroom told Gates’ representatives they would simply ask Mercedes, and after a couple of weeks, the automaker got back to the Mercedes showroom and basically said ‘no can do’.

And why? According to Haigh, it’s because they weren’t ready to take responsibility for protecting Bill’s kids.

It sounds a bit odd but actually, when you think about it, it made sense to them.

It would’ve been easy enough for Mercedes to build the car Gates wanted, certainly easier than it was to build his hydrogen yacht, but they still didn’t do it.

Mercedes was essentially saying that realistically, they could’ve done it and everything would’ve been fine but, in case something went wrong, they didn’t want to be involved.

So what did Bill Gates do?

According to Mr Haigh, he eventually settled for a Volvo.


Alessandro Renesis

Experienced content creator with a strong focus on cars and watches. Alessandro penned the first-ever post on the Supercar Blondie website and covers cars, watches, yachts, real estate and crypto. Former DriveTribe writer, fixed gear bike owner, obsessed with ducks for some reason.